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THEATRE 29 OPENS “SECRET GARDEN” MUSICAL FRIDAY NIGHT

Theatre 29 announces the gala opening of the musical “The Secret Garden,” sponsored by Friends of the Twentynine Palms Library and The Gladys Carol Scholarship. Reporter Rebecca Havely has your invitation… “The Secret Garden” opening night festivities Friday, August 26, begins at 6 p.m. with hors d’oeuvres and a silent auction. The curtain will rise at 7 p.m. with deserts and door prizes at intermission. Based on the beloved Burnett novel, “The Secret Garden” set in India, 1905 tells the story of young Mary Lennox, who after the sudden death of her parents is sent to live with an unknown uncle at the bleak Misselthwaite Manor. She finds solace in a hidden garden, and with it, a path to rebirth, proving that hope can bloom from the darkest of places. Tickets for the gala only on Friday, August 26, are $25 and can be purchases by visiting the Twentynine Palms Library or by calling 760-972-7205 or 760-586-2185.
“The Secret Garden” will run Friday and Saturday nights at 7 p.m. through September 24 with 2:30 Sunday matinees on September 4 and 18. Tickets for performances other than opening night are from $8 to $15 and are available now at theatre29.org, by calling the Box Office at 760-361-4151.


JOSHUA TREE NATIONAL PARK CHIEF RANGER TO RETIRE

After 32 years of service to the National Park Service, Chief Ranger Jeff Ohlfs will retire August 31. Ohlfs has served at Joshua Tree National Park for 26 years. He started his career with the Park Service as an intern in 1981 at Pinnacles National Monument, and has worked at national parks, recreation areas, and monuments at Crater Lake, Whiskeytown, Redwoods, C&O Canal, and Hot Springs, before moving to Joshua Tree National Park. He said he never planned to work at a desert park, but grew to love the beauty of Joshua Tree. In his retirement, Ohlfs plans to continue traveling and visiting all of the country’s national parks. Ohlfs and his wife Deb will continue to make their home in Twentynine Palms.

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BIGHORN DESERT VIEW WATER AGENCY BOARD MEETS TONIGHT

The Bighorn Desert View Water Agency will hold their monthly meeting tonight. Reporter Mike Lipsitz checks the Landers area water supplier’s Board agenda…
The Bighorn Desert View Water Agency Board of Directors holds the regular monthly meeting at 6 p.m. tonight. Directors are expected to update and establish reserve account criteria including increasing the figure and make changes to adopt to new software. Directors are also expected to approve $20,000 to replace a pump and motor at Goat Mountain Well #3. And under “information only” the board will receive an update on this year’s Water Wise Landscape Tour by the Morongo Basin Conservation Association, and on efforts to reason with the Bureau of Land Management and their attempt to squeeze the agency for lease revenue when water pipes cross their property.
These items and others all under consideration under the old water tower on Cherokee Trail in Landers.


JOSHUA BASIN WATER SPECIAL MEETING TONIGHT

At tonight’s special meeting of the Joshua Basin Water District board, the board will meet for closed session labor negotiations for represented employees. There are no other items on the agenda. Tonight’s meeting starts at 6 p.m. at district offices on Chollita Road in Joshua Tree.


JOSHUA TREE CLEAN TEAM OUT TOMORROW MORNING

The next regular meeting of the Joshua Tree Clean Team is tomorrow, August 24, at Hwy. 62 and Neptune on the south side. The volunteers will be meeting from 7:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. Neptune is located between Border and Center. There will be gloves, bags, and grabbers to make the job easier. They will meet afterward at the Park Rock Cafe for coffee and conversation.


MOJAVE DESERT LAND TRUST MOVIE SHOWING TONIGHT

A special screening of the Documentary film, “Dam Nation” will be hosted by the Mojave Desert Land Trust tonight. Managing editor Tami Roleff tells you where to bring the popcorn…
The Mojave Desert Land Trust will host a special showing of the movie “Dam Nation” tonight. The movie, which has been screened and received awards at several film festivals, documents the steep price that building dams has inflicted on rivers and the animals who depend on them. The film will be preceded by a discussion by Dr. Tim Kranz, a professor of environmental studies at the University of Redlands. Doors open at 7 p.m. at the Mojave Desert Land Trust office on Highway 62 across from the cemetery in Joshua Tree; the lecture starts at 7:30 and the movie at 8. For more information, call 760-366-5440.


DISH NETWORK PROBLEM AFFECTS SOME MORONGO BASIN TELEVISION VIEWERS

Some Morongo Basin residents were without television reception Monday. According to Mark Lundquist, the field representative for Third District County Supervisor James Ramos, the problem is with DISH Network. The county’s Special District Department is working with Dish to resolve the problem. For more information, call Special Districts TV at 760-367-1833.


MORONGO UNIFIED SCHOOLS START TODAY, DRIVER SAFETY REMINDERS

Today is the first day of school for the Morongo Unified School District. According to the National Safe Routes to School program, more children are hit by cars near schools than at any other location. Now that Morongo Basin schools are open, drivers must be more cautious than ever in or near school zones. Reporter Mike Lipsitz reminds us of safe driver practices in school zone…

Back to school means it’s time for drivers to observe extra caution. If you drive children to school:

• Don’t block visibility by double parking.
• Let children out on the same side as the school.
• Carpool to reduce the traffic volume.

And for all drivers:

• Don’t block the crosswalk when stopped at a red light or waiting to make a turn. This forces pedestrians to go around you and can put them in the path of traffic.
• In a school zone when flashers are blinking, stop and yield to pedestrians crossing the crosswalk.
• Always stop for a school patrol officer or crossing guard holding up a stop sign.
• Watch for children in school zones, near playgrounds and parks, and in all residential areas
• Don’t honk at pedestrians, even if you have the right of way.
• Never pass a vehicle stopped for pedestrians.
• In general, use extra caution around pedestrians wherever they may be, no matter who has the right of way.


SHARE THE ROAD WITH SCHOOL BUSSES

School days bring congestion on neighborhood streets. Reporter Rebecca Havely shares some tips on sharing the road with school busses…

It’s never more important for drivers to slow down and pay attention than when kids are present, especially before and after school. Yellow school busses are picking up students, there are kids on bikes, and harried parents dropping their kids off before work. If you’re driving behind a bus, allow a greater following distance than if you were driving behind a car. It is illegal to pass a school bus that is stopped to load or unload children. Never pass a bus from behind. The area 10 feet around a school bus is the most dangerous for children, so stop far enough back to allow them space and always be alert as children can be unpredictable.


MANDATORY EVACUATION ORDERS LIFTED FOR BLUE CUT FIRE

Mandatory evacuation orders for the Blue Cut Fire in San Bernardino County were lifted Sunday for all communities affected by the fire. The fire, which is just over 37,000 acres, is now 89 percent contained, and firefighters are mopping up, securing, and reinforcing containment lines. Fire officials announced a preliminary damage assessment of 105 single family homes burned, 216 outbuildings were destroyed. The initial report also shows numerous vehicles, including boats, RVs, trailers, and water tanks, damaged or destroyed. Initially, 34,500 homes were threatened, and 82,000 people were forced to evacuate. Sheriff’s deputies arrested three people Thursday, accused of looting in the burned-out area. In addition, the Sheriff’s Department is asking people to report anything suspicious they may have seen between 10 and 11 a.m. last Tuesday near the Cajon Pass.


WEDNESDAY DEADLINE FOR COMMENTS ON YUCCA VALLEY TAX MEASURES

If you want to make a written ballot comment, for or against, the proposed Yucca Valley sales tax measures, Wednesday is the deadline. Managing editor Tami Roleff tells you how to submit…

Yucca Valley residents will vote on two tax measures in November. Measure Y will enact a ½ percent sales tax for 10 years, whose proceeds will be used to provide funding for public safety and to improve the town’s roads and infrastructures. Measure Z is another ½ percent sales tax for 10 years that will help reduce sewer assessments for Yucca Valley residents. The town clerk is accepting written arguments for and against the sales tax measures to appear on the sample ballot. The arguments cannot exceed 300 words and must be submitted by a resident eligible to vote or a bona fide association of residents. The deadline to submit arguments is 5 p.m. Wednesday, August 24.

For complete information about these proposed revenue measures and submitting argument, click this link: http://www.yucca-valley.org/news/Ballot_Measure.html

In accordance with California Elections Code, the Town Clerk is currently accepting written arguments for and against these measures. One argument for, and one argument against each measure may be included in the sample ballot. Written arguments must be received by the Town Clerk by 5:00 p.m. Wednesday, August 24, 2016 to be considered for inclusion in the sample ballot. The Town Clerk’s office is located at Town Hall, 57090 Twentynine Palms Hwy, Yucca Valley.

Written arguments shall not exceed 300 words in length, must be written by any individual voter who is eligible to vote on the measure, or a bona fide association of citizens, and submitted with a completed Statement by Proponents/Authors of Arguments for this purpose. The work of anonymous authors will not be accepted.

The public is encouraged to stay informed during the election process. Additional information and future updates will be available on the Town’s website at http://www.yucca-valley.org/news/Ballot_Measure.html.

To register to vote, please visit the California Secretary of State website at http://registertovote.ca.gov/ or pick up a form at Town Hall.


FREE DIABETES EDUCATION CLASSES AT HI-DESERT MEDICAL CENTER TOMORROW

Hi-Desert Medical Center hosts free education classes for diagnosed diabetes patients. The Medical Center’s Dietary department will provide relevant tools and information that patients need to provide comprehensive training and understanding. These classes, which have expanded to four one-hour classes, are designed to allow the patient to begin education anywhere within the four-session cycle; the cycle of classes repeats each month. Classes are held at 11 a.m. on the first four Tuesdays of the month at the Helen Gray Education Center on the hospital campus in Joshua Tree. Register for classes by calling 760-366-6182.


COUNTY PUBLIC HEARING ON CONTROVERSIAL SODA MOUNTAIN SOLAR TOMORROW

The County Board of Supervisors is scheduled to hold a public hearing on the controversial Soda Mountain solar energy project southwest of Baker tomorrow. Reporter Mike Lipsitz explains why a project so many miles away has engendered intense local interest…

At tomorrow’s 10 a.m. meeting of the County Board of Supervisors in San Bernardino, the board is expected to convene a public hearing to consider the Soda Mountain solar energy project planned for over 2,000 acres of Bureau of Land Management land six miles southwest of Baker. And while that is some distance from Morongo Basin, local interest has been high. Critics object to its proximity to the Mojave National Preserve, about a half mile away. They say the facility will block a migratory route to Death Valley by bighorn sheep, as well as a number of other negative environmental impacts. Local organizations, including the Morongo Basin Municipal Advisory Council, Morongo Basin Conservation Association and the Joshua Tree Chamber of Commerce, have held letter writing campaigns; their reps plan to testify at tomorrow’s hearing. Anyone wishing to speak for or against the project may do so in person at the County Government Center in San Bernardino, or via live video link from the first floor teleconferencing room in the County Government Center on White Feather Road in Joshua Tree.


FREE FEDERAL FOOD DISTRIBUTIONS IN TWENTYNINE PALMS AND JOSHUA TREE TOMORROW

Free federal surplus food will be distributed in Twentynine Palms tomorrow from 9:00 a.m. until 11:00 a.m. The Twentynine Palms Food Pantry will be conducting the USDA give-away every Tuesday after the third Monday of the month. The distribution will be at the Immanuel Prince of Peace church at 6450 Stardune in Twentynine Palms. For more information, call 760-367-3663.

The Joshua Tree community free federal food distribution that was cancelled last Monday—due to vehicle problems—has been rescheduled for Tuesday, August 23, from 9 to 11 a.m. Residents may pick up their food at the Joshua Tree Community Center, 6171 Sunburst Road in Joshua Tree.


LINCOLN CLUB TO HEAR FROM REPUBLICAN CONVENTION ATTENDEES

Two local Lincoln Club members attended the Republican National Convention in Cleveland and will share their experiences about their first convention. Becki Vowles and Jackie Gibson will be at the Lincoln Club meeting at Hawk’s Landing golf course clubhouse Tuesday, August 23, at 6 p.m. The golf course is located at 55100 Martinez Trail in Yucca Valley.


FREE HOME ENERGY WORKSHOP MONDAY

The Community Action Partnership of San Bernardino County will hold a free home energy education workshop Monday, August 22. The workshop about the Home Energy Assistance Program will be held 9:30 to 3:30 at Reach Out, 7255 Joshua Lane, Suite C in Yucca Valley. Call 909-723-1500 for an appointment.


DON’T FALL FOR IRS SCAM

Recently, Morongo Basin residents have been receiving phone calls from someone who claims to be from the Internal Revenue Service. Managing editor Tami Roleff says don’t fall for these scammers who say you owe money…
The phone rings, and the caller says he is from the IRS and that you owe taxes, and if you don’t pay up immediately, the IRS is going to file a lawsuit against you, or will send the police to your home to arrest you. Don’t fall for this increasingly common phone scam. The IRS never initiates phone calls demanding payment immediately; do not call them back and do not send them any money. Amy Nofziger with the AARP says the IRS will never involve the police or ask for money to be wired. “The IRS will never require that you use a specific payment method, such as prepaid debit card, wire transfer, money order. We’ve even heard of scammers asking for people to go and get gift cards.” If you think you are the victim of a tax scam, report it to the sources in this story at z1077fm.com. you can report it to the following sources:

•To report someone impersonating an IRS employee, contact the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration at (800) 366-4484 or www.tigta.gov

•For cases of identity theft involving state taxes, contact the California Franchise Tax Board at (916) 845-3669 or https://www.ftb.ca.gov/individuals/id_theft.shtm


ROAD CONSTRUCTION ON OLD WOMAN SPRINGS ROAD

CalTrans has announced that it will be performing road maintenance on Old Woman Springs Road Monday, August 28. From 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., lanes will be temporarily closed between Marmac Road in Landers to Midway Avenue in Lucerne Valley.


KING OF THE HAMMERS TO BE FOCUS OF TV SHOW

A 6-week television show featuring King of the Hammers will be shown on NBC Sports, starting August 25. King of the Hammers is a week-long off-road race that takes place in late January in Johnson Valley. The series, titled “Journey to the Hammers,” will feature three episodes that are focused on King of the Hammers week, including a one-hour special on the Nitto King of the Hammers, Two half-hour episodes will feature the Klim King of the Motos, Polaris RZR King of the Hammers UTV race, and the Smittybilt Every Man Challenge. The remaining three episodes will features all six of the Trail-Gear Western Regional and 4-wheel drive eastern regional races. The shows are scheduled to air at 8 p.m.


REGISTER NOW FOR MEN’S CHRISTIAN CONFERENCE

The Morongo Basin Evangelical Pastors Fellowship is sponsoring a Mighty Oaks Men’s Conference Saturday, September 17. The guest speaker will be Chad Robichaux, a former Force Recon Marine and a professional mixed martial arts champion, who will share his journey about becoming a Christian man, husband, and father. The conference will be held from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Evangelical Free Church of Yucca Valley, 6804 Mohawk Trail. Lunch will be provided. The event is free, but donations will be requested. To register, call 760-228-1747.


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