Pictured above is the Fillmore Historical Museum where the Board of Directors hosted their annual membership meeting to elect their board of directors. Photo courtesy Martha Gentry.
Pictured above is the Fillmore Historical Museum where the Board of Directors hosted their annual membership meeting to elect their board of directors. Photo courtesy Martha Gentry.
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Submitted By Martha Gentry Executive Director of the Fillmore Historical Museum

Fillmore Historical Museum held its Annual Meeting of the membership on Saturday, February 16, 2019. Martha Gentry, Jack Stethem, Joanna Michel and Robert Morris were re-elected to the Board. Executive Director, Martha Gentry, reported that during 2018, 24 volunteers had been active donating over 2,000 hours of their time to the Museum.

After the Annual Meeting, the board of directors met and elected Martha Gentry, President; Jack Stethem, Vice-president; Beverly Hurst, Secretary; and Nancy Bowlin, Treasurer.

Museum volunteers lead school tours, welcome guests during weekly open hours and on Saturdays. They also maintain the collection and do historical research. Additionally they have presented programs about the Saint Francis Dam disaster and Rancho Sespe to schools and civic organization. It is the dedication of these volunteers that allows the Museum to keep its doors open.

The museum volunteers would like to invite members of the community to visit the museum and learn more about the history of Fillmore, Piru, Sespe, and Bardsdale. Museum hours are from 9 a.m. to noon and from 1 p.m. until 4 p.m. on Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday; 1 p.m. until 4 p.m. on Thursday; and from 10:00 a.m. until 3:00 p.m. on Saturday. The museum is located at 350 Main St. in Fillmore.

 


 
Pictured far right is Fillmore Rotary President Andy Klittich presenting a Rotary mug to the firemen who spoke at last week’s meeting about the new County Fire Station, currently in progress. This station will have six bays for trucks, fire and rescue, sleeping room, kitchen and a training room. They will be able to hold all of their training and drills there instead of having to travel to other stations. It will also have available space for staging in case of a large fire. When they do move from the Old Telegraph Road station they will lease it to the Forest Service. Photo courtesy Martha Richardson.
Pictured far right is Fillmore Rotary President Andy Klittich presenting a Rotary mug to the firemen who spoke at last week’s meeting about the new County Fire Station, currently in progress. This station will have six bays for trucks, fire and rescue, sleeping room, kitchen and a training room. They will be able to hold all of their training and drills there instead of having to travel to other stations. It will also have available space for staging in case of a large fire. When they do move from the Old Telegraph Road station they will lease it to the Forest Service. Photo courtesy Martha Richardson.
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Pictured is Fillmore Rotary President Andy Klittich with Deputy Javier Rodriguez and his K-9 Jago. Deputy Rodriguez shared with the group that he has been with the Department for 13 years and has been a handler for six months. The group learned there are only six K-9’s in the county and all have been hand-picked in Germany. Specific dogs are chosen for the area they will be working in. Each handler must train their dog and pay for all the dogs expenses, but do receive some help from the K-9 nonprofit Foundation. Jago is 19 months old and a German shepherd. He will be a working dog for 6-7 years before he is retired. Photo courtesy Martha Richardson.
Pictured is Fillmore Rotary President Andy Klittich with Deputy Javier Rodriguez and his K-9 Jago. Deputy Rodriguez shared with the group that he has been with the Department for 13 years and has been a handler for six months. The group learned there are only six K-9’s in the county and all have been hand-picked in Germany. Specific dogs are chosen for the area they will be working in. Each handler must train their dog and pay for all the dogs expenses, but do receive some help from the K-9 nonprofit Foundation. Jago is 19 months old and a German shepherd. He will be a working dog for 6-7 years before he is retired. Photo courtesy Martha Richardson.
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Derrick Wilson
Derrick Wilson

The Ventura County Public Works Agency (VCPWA) has named Derrick Wilson as Strategic Operations Manager to lead the newly formed division within the Central Services Department (CSD) concentrated on planning, execution, analysis and knowledge (PEAK) management for VCPWA.

Prior to serving as VCPWA’s Strategic Operations Manager, Wilson began his career with VCPWA’s Water and Sanitation Department managing staff and services in the Integrated Waste Management Division. Wilson’s new role will focus on agency-wide organizational excellence and continuous process improvement. He will oversee a variety of agency-wide activities which include implementation of the agency’s strategic plan, tracking and reporting performance metrics, leading the Business Quality Council, and assisting departments with completing, documenting and reporting process improvements.

“Our new strategic Operations Manager is by far one of VCPWA’s most important roles. Our agency operations require our full team working together with great expertise and passion to keep our communities safe, through all of our many public works projects and our immediate response to emergencies through our five departments,” said Jeff Pratt, Director of VCPWA. “Derrick’s key position will keep us extremely efficient and cost effective as we work on behalf of Ventura county. The safety and quality of life of our community is paramount to VCPWA.”

With a combined 27 years in public service, 10 years at the County of Santa Barbara and 17 years with the County of Ventura, Wilson has successfully led teams and completed enterprise-level initiatives employing process improvement, business process redesign, change management and project leadership skills.

 


 
Pictured is Rotary President Andy Klittich with Rotary Member Joe Ricards who presented to the club about being a certified scuba instructor in several specific areas. He brought along his most recent equipment, a rebreather which allows him to stay underwater for up to three hours at 130 feet. He described his dives and places he has gone, and his passion for the sport. Photo courtesy Martha Richardson.
Pictured is Rotary President Andy Klittich with Rotary Member Joe Ricards who presented to the club about being a certified scuba instructor in several specific areas. He brought along his most recent equipment, a rebreather which allows him to stay underwater for up to three hours at 130 feet. He described his dives and places he has gone, and his passion for the sport. Photo courtesy Martha Richardson.
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The Rotary program watched a presentation given by Ag teachers Veronica Lemos, Pam Klittich and the FFA Officers. Each student described various FFA activities and events to go with the slides they shared with the club. Some events like Ventura County Fair, Farm Day and the 91st FFA National Convention have passed already this year, but they are looking forward to a Plant Sale Mother’s Day weekend and various competitions. The most exciting event will be the new two story Ag building which will begin construction in Fillmore in the summer. Photo courtesy Martha Richardson.
The Rotary program watched a presentation given by Ag teachers Veronica Lemos, Pam Klittich and the FFA Officers. Each student described various FFA activities and events to go with the slides they shared with the club. Some events like Ventura County Fair, Farm Day and the 91st FFA National Convention have passed already this year, but they are looking forward to a Plant Sale Mother’s Day weekend and various competitions. The most exciting event will be the new two story Ag building which will begin construction in Fillmore in the summer. Photo courtesy Martha Richardson.
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Free Rides Offered to Somis Passengers during First Month of Service

The Ventura County Transportation Commission (VCTC) will begin offering bus service to Somis via its East-West Connector bus route on Jan. 14, 2019. This marks the first time that Somis, a community in unincorporated Ventura County between Camarillo and Moorpark, has been served by public transit.

To celebrate the milestone, VCTC will offer free bus rides to all passengers who board or exit at the Somis stop during its first month of service, Jan. 14-Feb. 15.

“We are thrilled to be able to provide regular, convenient transit service to Somis for the first time in the community’s history,” said Linda Parks, VCTC Board Chair and Supervisor to Ventura County’s second district, which includes Somis. “It gives people in this more rural area an opportunity to leave their cars at home and take the bus.”

The new Somis stop is located at Somis Rd. and Rice St. The stop is served by VCTC’s East-West Connector, a bus line linking Simi Valley and Moorpark with Somis, Camarillo, Oxnard and Ventura. All VCTC buses include bicycle accommodations for cyclists. To view the full East-West Connector schedule, visit https://www.goventura.org/home-2/upcoming-schedule-changes/.

The addition of the Somis stop is one of several schedule and fare changes that will go into effect Jan. 14. More information about upcoming service changes is available at www.goventura.org.

About the Ventura County Transportation Commission
The Ventura County Transportation Commission is the regional transportation planning agency committed to keeping Ventura County moving. Program information is available at www.goventura.org.

 
On Thursday, December 20th at about 3:30pm a group of Christmas carolers from the Boys and Girls Club stopped by the Fillmore Gazette and sang some classic Christmas songs for the entire office to enjoy. Their goal was to walk around to the local businesses and bring them Christmas cheer.
On Thursday, December 20th at about 3:30pm a group of Christmas carolers from the Boys and Girls Club stopped by the Fillmore Gazette and sang some classic Christmas songs for the entire office to enjoy. Their goal was to walk around to the local businesses and bring them Christmas cheer.
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On Friday, December 14th at the Greenfield Care Center located at 118 B St. in Fillmore they hosted their Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony. From 6pm – 9pm employees, their families and everyone from the community was welcomed to come and enjoy jolly jumpers, games, hot chocolate/ coffee, craft & food vendors, music and more. Even Santa & Mrs. Claus made an appearance. The event was hosted by the Fillmore Country Club & Greenfield Care Center. Pictured is some of Greenfield Care Center staff along with their kids enjoying the festivities.
On Friday, December 14th at the Greenfield Care Center located at 118 B St. in Fillmore they hosted their Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony. From 6pm – 9pm employees, their families and everyone from the community was welcomed to come and enjoy jolly jumpers, games, hot chocolate/ coffee, craft & food vendors, music and more. Even Santa & Mrs. Claus made an appearance. The event was hosted by the Fillmore Country Club & Greenfield Care Center. Pictured is some of Greenfield Care Center staff along with their kids enjoying the festivities.
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A huge thanks to all who participated in the down town trees! We really have such an extraordinary community here in Fillmore. A few years ago I was up in Sonoma for the holidays, and hearing they had trees down town, I thought I would see their event. Every tree was gorgeous, perfectly coiffed and lit spectacularly...it was really something to see in all its perfection, yet I walked away from it with an odd feeling of 'huh?'....

But walking down the street the other day I finally figured out what was bothering me then...as I passed the trees in our down town, each unique, most homemade, all put up with obvious joy...I realized what made ours different then the Sonoma production...our trees beauty came from our hearts, and to the hearts of our community!

The only 'rules' for our tree tradition are no glass, no electricity, and no flocking- and if you can make the ornaments homemade all the better...but recycling is also honored! Then it is keeping your tree 'spruced up' until they come down around New Years. This tradition had never been about the money, only the heart. I talked to Marie Wren to get the history of the Christmas trees downtown and up until 1950 there were two giant trees put on both sides of downtown- right in the middle of the intersections. But then someone crashed into a tree, so after that the Chamber of Commerce started the trees down the side walks. Some time in the early 1970s they just disappeared.

A few years back some friends were reminiscing at a FHS Alumni Banquet about 'the old days' and we wondered what happened to this tradition...so it was decided to get it up and going again. Every year it gets bigger and bigger in heart and in number of trees- so we hope to see more clubs, classrooms, churches and individuals participating next year!

A special shout out to Moon Nursery in Piru, who loans us the trees, drops them off and picks them up too- we couldn't have done it without your generosity! To Otto and Sons Nursery who is always there to help the details! And to Bank of Sierra who is always the first to take a tree, and also copies all the flyers for us. And to all of you who brought smiles to so many with a tree you decorated- you are why the community of Fillmore is so beloved!

Have a beautiful Christmas!
Regina Stehly

 
Teen Challenge presenters Katie, Director Rosie Weir and Ashley gave an informative program to Fillmore Rotary Club last week. They are pictured with Rotary president Andy Klittich. Teen Challenge is a one year residential program in Ventura for women 18 and up. The program helps people become mentally sound, emotionally balanced, physically well and spiritually alive. Photo courtesy Martha Richardson.
Teen Challenge presenters Katie, Director Rosie Weir and Ashley gave an informative program to Fillmore Rotary Club last week. They are pictured with Rotary president Andy Klittich. Teen Challenge is a one year residential program in Ventura for women 18 and up. The program helps people become mentally sound, emotionally balanced, physically well and spiritually alive. Photo courtesy Martha Richardson.
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Their “inspiration was to landscape to match the outside of the farmhouse look,” said Debra. They used white birch trees, white lettuce roses, bottlebrush bushes, and freeway daisies for ground cover. They brought in rock to give it a look of a creek. “We also added no mow grass to give the look of wild grass growing on the hills,” added Debra. The Tharpe family received a $40 gift certificate courtesy of Otto & Sons Nursery (1835 East Guiberson Rd. Fillmore) from Ari Larson representing Fillmore Civic Pride. For more information on Fillmore Civic Pride and meeting times please contact Ari at 805.794.7590 or email; petenari55@hotmail.com
Their “inspiration was to landscape to match the outside of the farmhouse look,” said Debra. They used white birch trees, white lettuce roses, bottlebrush bushes, and freeway daisies for ground cover. They brought in rock to give it a look of a creek. “We also added no mow grass to give the look of wild grass growing on the hills,” added Debra. The Tharpe family received a $40 gift certificate courtesy of Otto & Sons Nursery (1835 East Guiberson Rd. Fillmore) from Ari Larson representing Fillmore Civic Pride. For more information on Fillmore Civic Pride and meeting times please contact Ari at 805.794.7590 or email; petenari55@hotmail.com
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Students for Eco-Education and Agriculture (SEEAG) has expanded its board by adding three new members.

Named to the board are Heidi Whitcomb, CEO of Ventura Rental Party & Events, Melinda Beardsley, president of Beardsley & Son and Bradley Dykes, branch manager of Morgan Stanley in Oxnard.

For Whitcomb, the decision to join the board was easy. "I have a passion for children and believe in SEEAG's mission to educate and excite children about where their food comes from," says Whitcomb. "Making healthy food choices will benefit students and their families."

The nonprofit organization helps young students and the public in general gain a better understanding of where their food comes from. Students take part in classroom presentations and free farm field trips as part of SEEAG's Farm Lab. SEEAG's new Ventura County Child Wellness Initiative educates and inspires children to eat healthy by adding locally grown Ventura County specialty crops to their diet through its Farm Fresh Mobile Classroom. SEEAG's STEM Careers in 21st Century Agriculture shows middle and high school students the diverse job opportunities available in today's agricultural industry.

Beardsley is the fourth generation in a family involved in Ventura County farming. "Agriculture is an important part of all our lives," says Beardsley. "Being a part of an organization focused on educating and encouraging the appreciation for agriculture is a privilege."

Dykes agrees, “SEEAG's work introducing thousands of students to farms, farming and the origins of their food, has a positive impact on our community and will change young lives along the way."

Mary Maranville, SEEAG's founder and CEO, says adding to the board was necessary. "Board members will be responsible for helping guiding SEEAG as it expands its educational reach further into Southern California," says Maranville.

SEEAG also hosts Ventura County Farm Day each year in November. It is a day when the public is invited to visit farms throughout Ventura County.

For more about SEEAG, go to www.seeag.org.

About SEEAG
Founded in 2008, Students for Eco-Education and Agriculture (SEEAG) is a nonprofit organization that aims to help young students understand the origins of their food by bridging the gap between agriculture and consumption through its agricultural education programming. SEEAG’s “The Farm Lab” program based in Ventura County teaches schoolchildren about the origins of their food and the importance of local farmland by providing schools with classroom agricultural education and free field trips to farms. Through this and other SEEAG programs, over 25,000 elementary school students in Southern California have increased their understanding of the food journey. For more information, visit www.seeag.org or email Mary Maranville at mary@seeag.org

 

Joseph Kern passed away this past Tuesday, December 11.

Among other things, he was a Fillmore attorney for more than 60 years, and City Attorney for 19 of those years. His public achievements were many. But Joe was also a personal friend to me, and a major reason for the Fillmore Gazette's success during the past 30 years. He defended us through a multitude of spuriously brought legal challenges and was always there when he was needed - which during the earlier years was frequently. He was always generous with his time and advice.

Joe invited me to several special events at St. Thomas Aquinas College; most memorable, a speech by the late, great, Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, and another visit by a celebrated expert on Dante's Divine Comedy. The former visit permitted me to take notes and write a short piece on Scalia's talk.

Joe always seemed to have time to meet with me over some question, legal or otherwise, though I'm sure he had better things to occupy that time. An impatient person myself, I envied his patience. I remember one special, beautifully drafted legal document he prepared for me. He was a notably gifted legal draftsman as well.

I will always remember Joseph Kern as a devout Catholic, trusted friend and confidant.

Thank you Joe; may your soul rest in peace.

 
Fillmore Rotary Club donated $500 to the Fillmore Fire Foundation. Scott Beylik accepted the check from Rotary president Andy Klittich. Photo courtesy Martha Richardson.
Fillmore Rotary Club donated $500 to the Fillmore Fire Foundation. Scott Beylik accepted the check from Rotary president Andy Klittich. Photo courtesy Martha Richardson.
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Circle K Gas & Market, located at 423 West Ventura Street, Fillmore, now offers CBD products.
Circle K Gas & Market, located at 423 West Ventura Street, Fillmore, now offers CBD products.
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Rotary Club President Andy Klittich presented Dave Wareham with a special Paul Harris pin in recognition of his annual giving to the Rotary Foundation. Andy and Ari Larson also presented the Club with two banners; one for 100% membership to ‘Every Rotarian Every Year’ which means every member donated $100, and the second ‘100% Foundation Giving Club 2017-2018’. Photo courtesy Martha Richardson.
Rotary Club President Andy Klittich presented Dave Wareham with a special Paul Harris pin in recognition of his annual giving to the Rotary Foundation. Andy and Ari Larson also presented the Club with two banners; one for 100% membership to ‘Every Rotarian Every Year’ which means every member donated $100, and the second ‘100% Foundation Giving Club 2017-2018’. Photo courtesy Martha Richardson.
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Teen Challenge presenters Katie, Director Rosie Weir and Ashley gave an informative program to Fillmore Rotary Club last week. They are pictured with Rotary president Andy Klittich. Teen Challenge is a one year residential program in Ventura for women 18 and up. The program helps people become mentally sound, emotionally balanced, physically well and spiritually alive. Photo courtesy Martha Richardson
Teen Challenge presenters Katie, Director Rosie Weir and Ashley gave an informative program to Fillmore Rotary Club last week. They are pictured with Rotary president Andy Klittich. Teen Challenge is a one year residential program in Ventura for women 18 and up. The program helps people become mentally sound, emotionally balanced, physically well and spiritually alive. Photo courtesy Martha Richardson
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Karen Simpson presented a program on Camp HOPE to the Fillmore Rotary Club. This program focuses on kids who have experienced, firsthand, domestic violence and other crimes in their homes. The main purpose of the camp is to give these
kids their childhood back, by offering a fun, positive environment and helping them to find their future pathway. Photo courtesy Martha Richardson.
Karen Simpson presented a program on Camp HOPE to the Fillmore Rotary Club. This program focuses on kids who have experienced, firsthand, domestic violence and other crimes in their homes. The main purpose of the camp is to give these kids their childhood back, by offering a fun, positive environment and helping them to find their future pathway. Photo courtesy Martha Richardson.
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Submitted by Lynn Edmonds

The topic for the 2019 Speaker Contest will be “Freedom of the Press. What does it mean?”

This topic is very important and vital to our freedom and democracy evidenced by the continued fight over newspaper reporting in our daily life and discourse. Facts, opinions, fake news come up almost every day in nations’ politics and governing. Fillmore students, parents, teachers and the newspaper are thrust into daily controversy and strife over what is true and factual and correct. Youth living in the Fillmore School District area will have a chance to weigh in on this important topic during the speaker contest.

The contest will be held on Monday, February 4 at 6:45pm at the Scout House on the eastern end of Sespe Avenue. Parents, students, educators and the general public are invited to attend. The contest is open to all Fillmore area students of high school age regardless of the school of attendance (including home taught and foreign exchange students).

The winner will receive $100 and all participants $25 providing their speech is at least 5 minutes. Student should enter by contacting the Lion’s Club Chair Bill Edmonds at 805-524-4839 or Barbara Lemons at Fillmore High School. Students can also pick up the application and flyer at Walt’s Jewelry in downtown Fillmore.

Students should enter early and begin writing early as it takes time to research and prepare. Only six students can enter the contest. The first six who enter and are prepared to compete will be chosen. Good luck to all the students.