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PREGNANT WOMAN FOUND DEAD IN JOSHUA TREE

Following up on a report of a dead body, Sheriff’s deputies were dispatched to the 6800 block of Mt. Shasta Avenue in Joshua Tree at about 9:30 a.m. Monday morning. Deputies found a 35-year-old woman who was seven months pregnant lying face down inside a Winnebago parked at the location. Others at the location reported last seeing her alive at about 4:30 a.m. The body was released to the coroner due to her age; her name is being withheld pending notification of next of kin.


“YOU’LL SHOOT YOUR EYE OUT” “A CHRISTMAS STORY” CONTINUES AT THEATRE 29

In “A Christmas Story” at Theatre 29, young Ralphie Parker may shoot his eye out, but he still wants a BB gun for Christmas. Tickets for this popular story are going fast. Reporter Rebecca Havely has more…
“A Christmas Story,” the classic, heart-warming family movie, has come to life in Twentynine Palms as one of America’s most popular holiday shows. Set in Indiana in the 1940s, Christmas is coming and one mischievous, bespectacled little boy named Ralphie Parker wants an official Red Ryder BB gun, despite repeated and infamous warnings of “You’ll shoot your eye out!” Directed by Eric Ross, “A Christmas Story” unforgettably captures the essence of holiday wonder. All your favorites are here, including the infamous “Major Award” leg lamp, a pink bunny suit, a frozen flagpole, and an exploding furnace. This show is fun for the entire family, reserve your seats before they’re gone and find out if Ralphie gets his holiday wish.
Tickets for “A Christmas Story” are available for purchase at theatre29.org, or by calling the Theatre 29 Box Office at 760-361-4151. Tickets are $15 regular admission; $12 for seniors and military, and $8 for students with ID or children under 12. 


“ADOPT-A-CHILD” PROGRAM HELPS KIDS OUT OF THEIR HOMES FOR THE HOLIDAYS

The Basin Wide Foundation needs help in making sure that children, out of their homes through no fault of their own, have a happy Christmas. Children in the Child Protective Services program are often found during the holidays in temporary homes or foster care. The Basin Wide Foundation sponsors an “Adopt-a-Child” program that gives residents the opportunity to be their Santa and to bring smiles to many little faces. It’s easy; you’ll be assigned a child or family, and given their first name, age, and any special requests. You’ll be asked to spend between $35 and $40 per child you “adopt.” Drop off the gifts by December 16 at the Basin Wide Foundation office, located inside the California Welcome Center in Yucca Valley. For more information, or to “adopt” a child, email kellyc@basinwidefoundation.com or call 760-365-7219.


READY SB COUNTY APP AIMS TO HELP IN NATURAL DISASTERS

The state of California and San Bernardino County have set up websites and apps to help residents in case of natural disasters and emergencies. The California Office of Emergency Services, caloes.ca.gov, has tips for individuals, families, businesses, and schools and teachers, on how to prepare. Kirby Davis has more information about a free phone app developed by the county…
San Bernardino County has prepared a new app for smart phones to help residents prepare and plan for disasters. The Ready SB County app allows users to share their status with selected contacts with the push of a button, receive critical emergency alerts, locate the county’s emergency shelters, view up-to-date evacuation route maps, get the latest news and weather for San Bernardino county. The app also creates a personalized emergency preparedness plan that includes what you’ll need for an emergency supply kit, an emergency food supply shopping list; an emergency communications plan, and critical information to prepare your home for a disaster. This free app is available for both Android and iPhones and can be used with or without an Internet connection.
For more information, call Marjorie Smith at 760-820-1168 or Sunny Evans at 760-831-7672.


“SOLAR CHALLENGE” LOOKS FOR IDEAS TO SPREAD LOCAL ACCESS TO SOLAR

Solar energy innovators, your help is needed. Reporter David Haldane tells us about a cash-yielding contest open to your ideas…
Want to do something to help spread solar energy in the Morongo Basin? The federal government wants to hear from you! The U.S. Department of Energy has announced an 18-month prize competition aimed at expanding solar access to all Americans, especially those in low-to-moderate income areas.
Dubbed the Solar in Your Community Challenge, the contest is open to teams working to develop portfolios of solar projects aimed at extending access to the underserved. It’s also open to experts, including consultants and coaches, willing to assist those teams.
More than $5 million in cash prizes and technical assistance will be awarded to contestants developing projects or business models capable of being replicated nationwide. The deadline for entry is March 17, 2017.
You can learn more by clicking at http://www.solarinyourcommunity.org/en/page/how-to-en


YUCCA VALLEY SENIOR CENTER MEETING TOMORROW

Calling all seniors 60 years and older, you can have a say in what you want at your Yucca Valley Senior Center. Come join the monthly meeting of the Senior Club of Yucca Valley, 9 a.m. Thursday, December 1 at the Senior Center in the Yucca Valley Community Complex. All Morongo Basin seniors are welcome.
 


STEWARDSHIP EVENT IN SAND TO SNOW MONUMENT THIS SATURDAY

Pitch in this Saturday with the BLM and Mojave Desert Land Trust as a way to discover the Sand to Snow National Monument and improve it for others. Reporter Mike Lipsitz explains …
The Mojave Desert Land Trust and the Bureau of Land Management Barstow Field Office have organized a stewardship event in the Sand to Snow National Monument this Saturday, December 3 from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Volunteers will pick up trash in the vicinity and restore habitat damaged from illegal off road vehicle use. Bring a brown bag lunch and be prepared to work outdoors. Snacks and water will be provided. To RSVP contact Missy Boyd at Missy@MDLT.org or 760-366-5440.


HIGH SCHOOL SPORTS

The Yucca Valley High School Trojan wrestling varsity team won a dual match at home 51-19 against Cathedral City Tuesday night. Coach Larry Giron said the next home meet for the Trojans is Wednesday, December 14 at 5 p.m. versus Rancho Mirage High School.
The three quickest pins of the night were Trevor Scott taking out his opponent in 1:12; Aaron Alexander, 47.6 seconds; and Chris Worrell pinning his opponent in 20 seconds.
Three more pins were Damien Vasquez, Andrew Reyes, Kian Koedel with more points scored by Gabe Conteras beating his opponent 9-5.
The girl wrestlers both won their Dual matches rounding out the night with pins from Cheyenne Hallabrin, Fernanda Macías.
JV rounded out the night with quick pins by Tim Harris and Trinidad Soto.
  
The Yucca Valley High School Lady Trojan basketball team couldn’t overcome a cold shooting fourth quarter and lost 48-38 against Redlands East Valley last night in a second-round game at the West Valley Mustang tournament in Hemet. Coach Jess Geeson said the tournament continues with a 4:30 p.m. game on Thursday against Beaumont.
Trailing 33-32 in the fourth quarter, the local girls were outscored 15-6 in the final eight minutes and saw their record drop to 1-1 on the season.
Junior Savannah Beasley led the scoring with 12 points, while junior Kloee Scaccionoce and sophomore Angie Reutgen each added 10 points.
 
Monday, the Twentynine Palms High School girls’ varsity basketball team defeated San Jacinto High School in the first game of the West Valley Tournament 54-23.
Leading scorers for the Wildcats were: Lindsey Scamman with 15 points, nine rebounds; Tatiyanna Mackall with 13 points, seven assists, and six steals; and Makya Bullion with nine points, five rebounds, and seven steals. 
  
Tuesday, the Twentynine Palms girls’ varsity basketball won their game over Murrieta Mesa High School at the West Valley Tournament 69-53. Coach Tim Stanford said the Wildcats’ defense held Murrieta Mesa to 16 points in the first half.
Standouts for the game were Lindsey Scamman with 18 points and 17 rebounds; Tatiyanna Mackall with 18 points and eight rebounds; Destiny Dedmon with 11 points, five rebounds and five steals; Makya Bullion with eight points, seven steals, five rebounds, and three assists; and Hope Culver with seven points, five rebounds, and five steals.


SERVICES SET FOR RAM NANDYALA

Ram Nandyala, a 30-year resident of Yucca Valley, died November 21; he was 35 years old. He is survived by his parents, Rocky and Suryamani Nandyala of Yucca Valley; a sister, Vinuta Chaudhari of LaVerne; and brother Sirish Nandyala of Yucca Valley. He was a computer professional and had completed his masters at the University of California, Riverside. A viewing will be held at Wiefel’s and Sons in Yucca Valley at 10:00 a.m. Thursday, December 1. Services will be held Saturday, December 3 at 10:00 a.m. at the Joshua Tree Retreat Center followed by a luncheon. 


SWAT TEAM CALLED FOR ARMED BARRICADED SUSPECT IN MORONGO VALLEY

The County Sheriff’s responded to a Morongo Valley home last night in what turned into an all-night standoff with SWAT team and air support. About 7:50 p.m. the Sheriff’s department received a call from the suspect’s mother after 35-year-old Luke Schrader began demonstrating bizarre and violent behavior. According to the Sheriff’s department, Schrader assaulted his elderly father who sustained a laceration under his left eye. Morongo Valley Paramedics treated and released the victim at the scene. Schrader barricaded himself into the family home in the 49200 block of Buena Vista near Juniper Road. Schrader, armed with a shotgun, refused to come out of the house. Schrader could be heard yelling incoherently or about fear of the “Mexican Mafia.” Sheriff’s evacuated neighbors, which is standard procedure whenever a SWAT team is deployed. With the home surrounded attempts to negotiate with Schrader by telephone stretched out until almost sunrise. At about 5:45 a.m. this morning tear gas grenades were deployed and Schrader surrendered. He was taken into custody without additional incident.


ONGOING WALMART CON ENDS IN ARREST

Jason Bay, 37, thought he had a good con going by bringing a receipt from the previous day to Walmart, shopping for identical items, then bypassing the cashier to fraudulently return the items for cash. Sharp-eyed clerks at the Yucca Valley Walmart return desk recognized Bay and his familiar con and contacted the Sheriff Department. Clerks said Bay had a visible knife sticking out of his pocket and made no attempt to detain him. Bay completed the fraudulent return and was still in the store when deputies arrived. Jason Bay, who listed no address, was arrested for investigation of commercial burglary, and fraudulently attempting to recover money from the stolen merchandise. He was booked into Morongo Basin Jail. His bail was set at $30,000.


YUCCA VALLEY WOMAN NEARLY FALLS PREY TO A RENTAL SCAM

A homeowner was almost the victim of a rental scam. She had listed the home in Yucca Valley for sale, then saw that her home was also being listed online as a home for rent. Managing editor Tami Roleff offers the following tips to help you avoid being the victim of a rental scam…
If you are looking for a home to rent, you can reduce your chances of being scammed in the rental market by verifying the identity of the person you’re dealing with. Renters should confirm the identity of the home owner on the county’s property tax assessor’s website. If the rent is lower than the prevailing rent in the area, chances are it’s a scam. Never rent a home without being able to go inside—with a key—to look around. If the “owner” or “landlord” insists that you wire money for the deposit or for the first and last month’s rent, chances are it’s a scam. If you find you’ve been scammed, report it to the Sheriff’s Department and to the Federal Trade Commission. Contact the website where you saw the rental ad, too.


MORONGO VALLEY MEETING TO DISCUSS FIRE DEPARTMENT STAFF CUTS TONIGHT

Staffing cuts at Morongo Valley’s beleaguered fire department are the topic at a special workshop this evening. Reporter Mike Lipsitz has details.
In Morongo Valley tonight, the Community Services District will hold a special workshop meeting at 6:30 p.m. in the Covington Park Community Building. The Board plans to look at the 2016/2017 budget and the current balance sheet to determine staffing levels going forward. Such cuts were first brought up during the June budget meetings.


COFFEE WITH THE MAYOR IN YUCCA VALLEY TOMORROW

The final edition of Mayor Robert “Bob” Leone’s “Coffee with the Mayor” series is tomorrow (Wednesday, November 30). The public is invited to join Leone and Town of Yucca Valley management staff for an informal discussion of items of interest and to learn about current events, projects, and news in the community. Bring concerns, neighborly sunshine, and your questions for an opportunity to engage with Yucca Valley’s elected officials. Coffee and donuts will be served at 8 a.m. in the Yucca Valley Community Center’s Mesquite Room.


TWENTYNINE PALMS CEMETERY DISTRICT MEETS TONIGHT

The Twentynine Palms Cemetery District Board of Directors will meet at 6 p.m. tonight (Tuesday, November 29). On the agenda, the board will receive an update from the cemetery manager on various items. The meeting will be held in the cemetery office at 5350 Encelia Avenue.


TWENTYNINE PALMS PC: VACATION RENTALS, DRIVE-THROUGH’S, AND TAXIS TONIGHT

The Twentynine Palms Planning Commission will take up some issues of wider Public Interest tonight. Reporter David Haldane says drive-throughs downtown, taxis, and the Vacation Home Rental Ordinance are all included on the agenda…
Should you be able to buy things from your car in downtown Twentynine Palms? That’s the driving question facing the city’s Planning Commission at its regular meeting tonight. On the agenda; a public hearing on whether to amend the Downtown Economic Revitalization Specific Plan to eliminate its current prohibition of drive-through services. That prohibition, according to a staff report, may now be a hindrance to economic development. In other business, the commission will discuss taxi services, balloon signs and the city’s vacation rental ordinance. Tonight’s meeting gets underway at 6 p.m. at City Hall on Adobe Road.


TENDER LOVING CHRISTMAS VOLUNTEER MEETING IN YUCCA VALLEY TONIGHT

Tender Loving Christmas, TLC, needs you. Hundreds of volunteers are needed for TLC’s 33rd annual Christmas day event. Join TLC tonight for their volunteer meeting. There are many jobs to be done before, during and after Christmas. They need people with computer skills, program coordinators, lifters and toters, trucks and trailers, hosts and hostesses and many food service people. For information come to the Yucca Valley Community Center at 5:30 p.m. tonight. Please call 760-333-2413 if you have any questions.


YUCCA VALLEY WOMAN’S AGAPE GROUP MEET FOR MUSIC THURSDAY

Yucca Valley Women’s Agape International invites you to come and hear Bob Shurley, a singer-songwriter who will be sharing Bible-based songs along with wit and wisdom. Shurley will sing and speak at the monthly meeting Thursday, December 1 at 5 p.m. at Sizzler in Yucca Valley. Dinner will be served. Cost is $16.60 cash. For additional information call Sonya Fox at 760-369-1318.


“AN EVENING WITH SANTA” TO BENEFIT TWENTYNINE PALMS HIGH SCHOOL SELECT CHOIR

The Twentynine Palms Music Boosters are offering a night with Santa as a fundraiser. Reporter Rebecca Havely has your invitation…
You’re invited to spend “An Evening With Santa” at the Oasis Elementary School’s multi-purpose room to benefit the Twentynine Palms High School Select Choir. Friday, December 2 from 6 to 8 p.m. enjoy a spaghetti dinner for $5 presale and $6 at the door, children three and under are free. Tickets are available from Twentynine Palms High School Select Choir members, Music Boosters and at the Twentynine Palms Chamber of Commerce. Available for additional purchase are selfies with Santa, face painting, a silent auction and an opportunity drawing. Featuring a performance by the Twentynine Palms High School select choir.


JOSHUA SPRINGS HIGH SCHOOL TAKES CIF 8-MAN FOOTBALL CHAMPIONSHIP

The Joshua Springs Lightning Football Team won the championship CIF-SS game last Friday night defeating Lancaster Baptist 54 to 24. With that win the Lightning Football Team becomes the 2016 CIF-SS Div-II, 8-Man football champions. Under the direction of Coach Tom Robinson, this is the eighth time in a decade for the Lightning Football Team to emerge as champs in their division. Although this is Coach Robinson’s first year as head coach, it is the Lightning’s second consecutive year with an undefeated season. At 31 straight wins, the team has earned boasting rights for the longest running winning streak in the state.


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