A Joshua Tree family lost their home in a fire Saturday. County Fire Battalion Chief Mike Snow said firefighters were called to the Joshua Tree Mobile Estates in the 64200 block of 29 Palms Highway at 5:42 p.m. Crews arrived to find heavy smoke and flames erupting from the double-wide mobile home, which were also threatening adjacent homes. The residents had evacuated from the home prior to the arrival of the firefighters. Firefighters had the fire out in about 20 minutes. Snow said the fire started near a bathroom and bedroom and is believed to be electrical in nature. There were no injuries. The structure and contents are valued at about $75,000 and are a total loss.
The Morongo Basin Municipal Advisory Council holds a special meeting tonight with safety on the agenda. Reporter David Haldane has the details…
Do you feel close to meeting your Maker while driving down Highway 62? If not, you probably should because you’re three times more likely to die in a crash there than on the average California road. That, plus public outrage over a recent pedestrian fatality in Joshua Tree, has sparked an ongoing discussion between Caltrans and the Morongo Basin Municipal Advisory Council on possible solutions.
The conversation continues at a special meeting tonight. So far, the transportation agency has suggested creating continuous left-turn lanes, as well as narrowing the highway as it passes through Joshua Tree’s business district. Other proposals include carving out a dedicated bike lane and reconfiguring parking from parallel to diagonal.
More details are likely to emerge at tonight’s meeting, which gets underway 5 p.m. at the Joshua Tree Community Center on Sunburst Avenue.
A Twentynine Palms woman was arrested Thursday, accused of child endangerment. Limited information is available, but deputies went to a home in the 71600 block of 29 Palms Highway about 9:30 a.m. Thursday for a welfare check. The conditions at the home were unacceptable, and Jeanie Johnson, 39, was arrested for investigation of child endangerment. Jeanie Johnson was booked into the West Valley Detention Center with her bail set at $100,000.
A Twentynine Palms transient was arrested last week, accused of trying to break into an occupied home. According to a Sheriff’s report, deputies were sent to the 72200 block of Sunnyslope Drive just after 4 a.m. Monday, February 20. The resident reported that a man, later identified as Rene Barrera, 27, had jumped her chain-link fence, pushed on front windows, and pulled on the front door, attempting to gain entry. When deputies arrived, Barrera was seen jumping the fence in the back yard and running into the desert. After a short pursuit, Barrera was taken into custody. A records check determined that Barrera was on active parole for burglary. Rene Barrera was arrested for investigation of attempted burglary, and for violating his parole, and booked into the Morongo Basin Jail.
A Twentynine Palms woman who was named military spouse of the year for the Combat Center, has also been named as the Marine Corps Military Spouse of the Year. Managing editor Tami Roleff shares the good news…
Jessica Rudd of Twentynine Palms has seen many different aspects of military life, as an active duty Marine and as a spouse to an enlisted Marine who is now a commissioned officer.
“I am a veteran; after doing my four years in the Marine Corps, I decided it was time to trade that for a new venture.”
Rudd, 30, is now a stay-at-home-mom who works remotely for Apple, getting up at 4:30 a.m. to work before her three children wake up. She also homeschools her children, serves as a volunteer Family Readiness Assistant for her husband’s unit, and coordinates several physical fitness groups.
Rudd was one of 170 spouses who were nominated by a friend for the honor of Armed Forces Insurance Military Spouse of the Year, sponsored by Military Spouse magazine. Through online voting by the general public and judging by two panels of judges, Rudd advanced to the next round of Military Spouse of the Year for the Combat Center in Twentynine Palms. She then was one of three spouses competing for the Marine Corps Military Spouse of the Year, which she won on Friday.
“Just to keep moving forward with this nomination process is kind of surreal…. Get out there and vote!”
Voting for the final round will be March 2 at: http://msoy.militaryspouse.com/vote/
The overall Military Spouse of the Year will be announced May 12.
The Animal Action League will be offering low-cost vaccine and microchip clinics in March 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 March 4, 6, 15, 16, 22 and 29, in Desert Hot Springs’ Wardman Park on March 22. All clinics are held from 10 to 2 and are cash only. Visit animalactionleague.us for more information. To make an appointment for spay or neutering, call 760-366-1100.
Whether you’re a player or a sponsor, everyone’s a winner at the Copper Mountain College Alumni Association’s upcoming Casino Nite. Reporter Mike Lipsitz says win or lose, it doesn’t matter when it’s all for fun and for a good cause …
Attention high rollers, card sharks, lucky beginners and everyone in between. Dust off your good luck charms and save the date, March 4, for the Copper Mountain College Alumni Association’s Casino Nite. And for area businesses, clubs and service organizations sure thing sponsorships are available now at three levels: $250, $500, and $1,000. Sponsors can see their names on decks of cards, poker chips, casino cash and tickets. Bell Center doors will open at 6 p.m. gaming is from 6:30 to 9 p.m., and prizes and an auction come up at 9:15 p.m. Event tickets are $50 and include a cocktail and snacks, raffle ticket, and $500 in casino cash.
The deadline for 2017 Grubstake Days rodeo vendors and sponsors to sign up is this Wednesday, March 1. The rodeo will be held May 27 and 28 at the Homestead Park in Landers. Produced by the National Police Rodeo Association, this year’s Grubstake Rodeo, co-sponsored in party by Z107.7 Radio, will thrill attendees with a crowd- pleasing traditional rodeo as well as family fun and attractions before and after the main event. To sign up to as a vendor and or a sponsor contact Missy Buchanan at email@example.com or call 760-218-1980.
St. Joseph’s Episcopal Church of Yucca Valley will host a Shrove Tuesday pancake supper. Reporter Rebecca Havely has your invitation…
Come hungry and bring the whole family to St. Joseph’s Episcopal Church for their annual Shrove Tuesday pancake supper. Everyone is welcome Tuesday February 28. Pancakes, sausages and coffee will be served from 5 to 7 p.m. for just $5 each or $15 for families of 4. Cash only please, tickets sold at the door. The church is located at 56312 Church St. in Yucca Valley. Some proceeds will go towards a theater curtain for The St. Joseph’s Players all-volunteer community theatre troupe.
In a fast-paced thriller of a game, the Twentynine Palms High School boys’ varsity basketball team beat Hesperia High School Friday in the CIF Division 3A semi-finals. D’Shaun Barrett hit a fade-away three-pointer in the final moments of overtime to eliminate Hesperia 65-64, and advance Twentynine Palms to the championship game. Hesperia was up by two and had just missed a free throw with about 20 seconds to play. Twentynine Palms grabbed the rebound and Barrett hustled the ball up court and let it rip for the win. He hit the shot with 11 seconds left and Hesperia’s final chance didn’t connect. D’Shaun Barrett finished with a game-high 27 points despite collecting his fourth foul with about 30 seconds left in the third quarter. He stayed in the game while Twentynine Palms had three players foul out.
Travelers who plan to take “the back roads” to Las Vegas in March, take note: several roads will be closed to all traffic between noon and 10 p.m. between March 2 and March 18 while Union Pacific upgrades the railroad tracks. The Kelbaker Road crossing at Kelso will be closed March 2, 3, and 4. Drivers should use I-15 or US Route 95 instead. The Cima Road crossing at Cima will be closed March 6, 7 and 8; use Kelbaker Road to drive between I-40 and I-15. And the Ivanpah Road crossing, nine miles south of Nipton Road, will be closed March 17 and 18.
The deadline to volunteer for the San Bernardino County grand jury for 2017-2018 has been extended. Kirby Davis explains who can apply, what a grand juror does, and how to apply…
To be eligible for selection to the county grand jury, a person must be at least 18 years of age, a citizen of the United States, and a resident of California and the County of San Bernardino for at least one year prior to appointment. Service as a grand juror involves an average of three to five full working days per week in San Bernardino, starting July 1, for one year. Compensation is $25 per day plus meals and appropriate mileage. The county grand jury investigates all aspects of county, city and special district government, and may hear information on certain criminal investigations. Interested citizens can complete the application online at the Grand Jury’s website at www.sbcounty.gov/grandjury. The deadline to apply has been extended to March 17.
Vendors and raffle prizes are needed for an adoption fair to benefit the Morongo Basin’s only no-kill animal shelter. The adoption fair is set for Saturday, March 4, from 11 to 2, at the animal shelter on Sunview Avenue in Joshua Tree. Businesses and organizations interested in having a booth at the fair, or in donating a raffle prize, should call Caitlyn Ruggiero at 760-902-7321.
If you’ve ever wanted to learn to square dance or line dance now’s your chance. Here’s assignment reporter Kirby Davis with class information…
The Star Twirlers Square Dance Club of Yucca Valley will hold classes to learn square and line dancing. The classes begin Thursday, March 2, but new students will be accepted through March 16. The first class is free; additional classes are $5 each for square dancing and $3 for line dancing. Line dance classes are from 6 to 7 p.m.; square dance classes run from 7 to 9 p.m. All classes are held at the Yucca Valley Elks Lodge, 55946 Yucca Trail. Classes are open to dancers ages 12 and up. Reporting for Z107.7, this is Kirby Davis.
A Joshua Tree woman and Yucca Valley High School graduate is serving in the U.S. Navy at Naval Air Station Lemoore in California. Petty Officer 2nd Class Merihia Koster works as an aviation electrician’s mate in the Commander Strike Fighter Wing, where she is responsible for the electrical components and systems of the F/A-18 Super Hornet.
Koster said, “I like that I get to work with Super Hornets. The systems can be challenging at times, but I am always learning new methods and techniques.” Koster added that leadership skills and attention to detail are two of the most important things she has learned in the Navy.
Try-outs for the 29 Elite Academy traveling basketball teams for boys between ages of 8 and 14 will be Sunday, February 26. The travel teams play from April to July. There will be one team per age group. Boys from throughout the Morongo Basin are welcome to try out in the Twentynine Palms High School gym. Try-out times for third graders is 9 a.m.; 10 a.m. for fourth graders; 11 a.m. for fifth graders; noon for sixth graders; 1 p.m. for seventh graders, and 2 p.m. for eighth graders. 29 Elite Academy is part of the Amateur Athletic Union. For more information, visit this link:
A free gospel concert will be held 6 p.m. tonight, Saturday, February 25, at the Seventh-Day Adventist Church. Curtis Wright and Friends will be the featured musicians for the concert. The church is located at 8035 Church Street in Yucca Valley.
Transition Joshua Tree has a food demo planned. Managing Editor Tami Roleff has the details…
Transition Joshua Tree will hold a food demonstration program, vegetarian meal, and produce give-away Sunday at United Methodist Church. The event starts at 5 p.m. Sunday, February 26, at the church, 6213 East Parkway in Joshua Tree. Bring your own utensils, plates, and napkins. For more information, email JTlocalfoodprogram@gmail.com. Reporting for Z107.7, this is managing editor Tami Roleff.
Morongo Basin musician Dana Larson will join Pat Michaels on the Z107.7 Local Music Showcase this Sunday at 4 p.m. for an in-depth interview and debut of Dana Larson’s new album “Desert Mermaid.” Larson, who lives in an RV in Joshua Tree, has spent four years writing and producing the ten cuts on the CD, including a successful Go Fund me campaign for production costs. Larson’s talents are regularly on display at the 29 Palms Inn, Joshua Tree Saloon, Landers Brew house, and other local venues. The new Dana Larson CD “Desert Mermaid” is available on CD Baby and iTunes.
The Star Twirlers have planned a themed dance party Saturday. Reporter Kirby Davis has the details…
The Star Twirlers Square Dance Club will hold a dance Saturday, February 25. Line dancing will be held 7 to 7:30 p.m. and between tips; square dancing is 7:30 to 10 p.m. The theme is “John Wayne,” and the club’s own “John Wayne,” Richard Brewer, will be calling squares; Linda Sande will be cueing lines. This is the club’s three-quarter dance, and all beginner CCHA class members are welcome. You do not need to be a member of the Star Twirlers to come to the dance in their best John Wayne attire. The dance will be held at the Yucca Valley Elks Lodge on Yucca Trail in Yucca Valley. Admission is $7 per person. Reporting for Z107.7, this is Kirby Davis.