A sharp-eyed Sheriff’s deputy recognized two felons who were wanted on warrants and arrested them at a grocery store Wednesday. According to Sheriff’s Sergeant James Porter, Deputy Erdem Gorgolu was at the Twentynine Palms Stater Brothers store about 10 a.m. when he saw Joshua Rhodes, 25, of Twentynine Palms, who was wanted on two warrants for drug possession. After placing Rhodes under arrest, Gorgolu found heroin and brass knuckles on Rhodes. As Rhodes and Deputy Gorgolu were leaving the store, Gorgolu saw another man he recognized who had a felony warrant out for his arrest. Storm Ogle, 23, was arrested on his warrant for drug possession. Joshua Rhodes and Storm Ogles are being held at the West Valley Detention Center.
A Joshua Tree man was arrested Wednesday evening, accused of stalking a woman. According to a Sheriff’s report, Jimmy Canez, 46, first approached the victim at a grocery store about two months ago and told her he knew her and knew where she lived. The woman told deputies she did not know him. Canez then went to the woman’s work place about two weeks ago. Then Wednesday evening, the man went to the woman’s home in Joshua Tree about 7:30. The victim called police, who located Canez at another residence near Demesne and Olympic Road. Jimmy Canez was arrested for investigation of stalking and for violating his felony probation. Canez is being held without bail at the Morongo Basin Jail.
A Marine was severely injured when he was thrown off his motorcycle yesterday morning, following another crash on Adobe Road in Twentynine Palms. According to Sheriff’s Sergeant Steve Wilson, Jean Saylors, 22, was driving northbound on Adobe Road toward the main gate of the Combat Center about 6:30 a.m. when, for unknown reasons, he veered off the road and hit a fire hydrant just south of Indian Trail. He was not injured. As fire fighters were trying to turn off the water spraying from the hydrant and keep people from speeding through the standing water, a motorcycle rider, who has not been identified, rear-ended a Toyota 4-Runner about 6:44 that had slowed down. The motorcycle rider was thrown from his bike and suffered severe injuries. He was flown by Mercy Air to Desert Hospital in Palm Springs.
On the whole, there was a more upbeat tone to the MUSD Budget Report than has been the case in recent years. Reporter Dan Stork attended a workshop session on the subject, and lists some ups and downs…
In a workshop study session preceding the regular meeting of the Morongo Unified School District Board of Education, Assistant Superintendent Dave Price briefed the board on the second interim budget report for the current school year. He told the Board that projected revenues are pretty closely tracking the first interim report that was produced in October. Deviations along the way in projected revenues have been due to frequent changes in the “calculators” that have been issued for implementing the Local Control Funding Formula, Governor Brown’s innovation in school funding planning. Special education funding had been affected by several hundreds of thousands of dollars by federal sequestration, despite early assurances that that would not be the case. The amount projected for teachers’ salaries has increased by about $1 million, due to the addition of teachers to meet class size reduction goals. Enrollment losses in the east end of the District are starting to be balanced by growth in the west end, which augurs well for enrollment-based funding. The projected budget shows about $10 million more in expenditures than in revenues for the current year, with a corresponding decline in the ending fund balance. Despite that, the tone of Price’s report was more positive than it has been in recent years. He said that cash flow is good, since the state has cut way back on deferrals of funds owed to districts, and the projections for the following two years show the draw-down in the ending fund balance leveling off.
Spring forward, fall back. Don’t forget to set your clocks ahead one hour Saturday night before you go to bed as we spring forward into Daylight Saving Time. And with the time change, your local fire stations remind you to change the batteries in your smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors in your homes.
It’s Second Saturday in Joshua Tree this weekend. Many downtown Joshua Tree businesses will be open late every second Saturday of the month. Art galleries, restaurants, music events, and shopping, will be open from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. Check each month’s event announcement on the Joshua Tree Chamber of Commerce Facebook page for the most recent event info and business hours.
The iconic boulders of Joshua Tree National Park are just one of the ways the desert “rocks.” There are sparkling gemstones, swingin’ music, and—of course—those notorious earthquakes. Life on the faultline inspires creativity in many ways, and the Twentynine Palms Visitor Center is using “The Desert Rocks! Life on the Faultline” as the theme for its new show. Managing editor Tami Roleff has the details on how artists can submit artwork…
Artists are invited to submit one original piece of art that captures the theme—“The Desert Rocks! Life on the Faultline”—for possible inclusion in the spring art show. Artists are encouraged to submit three-dimensional work such as assemblage, sculpture, ceramics, or fabric art as well as well as more conventional mediums, including painting, drawing, watercolor, photography, and mixed media. Artwork must be turned in Friday, March 28, between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. An opening art reception will be held Friday, April 4, from 5:30 to 7. The Twentynine Palms Visitor Center and Art Gallery is located on the highway in downtown Twentynine Palms. For more information, call Jon Beard at 760-367-7562 or email email@example.com
The Morongo Basin Municipal Advisory Council will meet at 5:30 p.m. Monday, March 10, in the Joshua Tree Community Center. The Council will begin the meeting with a closed session, in which it will be given instruction on the Brown Act. When the Board reconvenes into open session, about 6:30 p.m. the Council will hear reports from the Sheriff’s Department, California Highway Patrol, and the San Bernardino County Fire Department. On the action agenda, the Council will send its recommendations to the County’s Land Use Committee about making the land use application process more transparent. The Council will also be asked to approve a resolution in support of Bighorn-Desert View Water Agency taking over customers who currently receive their water from the County.
The Hi-Desert Medical Center Board has called a special meeting for this Tuesday, March 11, at 4:00 p.m. After public comments, the board will interview three candidates who have applied for the open seat on the board caused by the resignation of Paul Hoffman. The board will interview Joseph Sullivan, Michael McBride, and Marge Doyle.
It’s a birthday party tomorrow at the Twentynine Palms Library tomorrow. Reporter Taylor Thacker has your invitation…
There is fun to be done at the Twentynine Palms Library on March 8, with a celebration for Dr. Seuss’ birthday. Theodor Seuss Geisel was born over 100 years ago on March 2nd. Every year, millions of people gather to celebrate his birthday the first week in March. On Saturday, March 8, at 2:30 PM, the Twentynine Palms Library is inviting the public to celebrate Dr. Seuss’ birthday. The celebration will include Dr. Seuss themed crafts, cross word puzzles, word searches and of course birthday cake! This celebration is free and no reservations are required! For more information call 760-367-9519.
The Joshua Tree Veterans of Foreign Wars Post will be serving up a fish and shrimp dinner, tonight from 4:00 to 6:00. Sunday breakfast is chicken fried steak. And don’t forget Taco Wednesday from 11 to 1.
Food for Life will serve a hot, nutritious meal at Little Church of the Desert Community Hall on Saturday, March 8, from 3 to 5 p.m. The Board for Food for Life will be serving tamales, Spanish rice, vegetables and dessert.
Desert Congregational Church in Twentynine Palms will hold a bluegrass gospel festival Saturday, March 8, from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Slated to appear are the Bost Family Tradition, Cinder Mountain, Bluegrass Brethren, the Haining Family, and Jason Donne and the Open Graves. The festival will all be held indoors, and food concessions will be available. Admission is free, but donations will be accepted. Desert Congregational Church is located on the corner of Sunrise and Two Mile Road. For more information, call 760-367-9429.
The softball team at Twentynine Palms High School is ready for their new season. ROP Broadcast student Brianna Borja looks ahead…
The Twentynine Palms High School softball team are currently training hard for the upcoming spring season with the help of Coach Mintz, Coach M, and Coach Stanford, who are gearing up the gals to face new challenges and new opponents. These ladies are ready to dominate the field with their fellow members with the determination of a Wildcat. Home games are located at Luckie Park. Away games time will vary. Last year, varsity girls went up against Shadow Hills and our school rivals, Yucca Valley. These Knights and Trojans were not to be messed with as they did bring the game. Hopefully this year the upcoming games will be filled with competiveness and also courtesy.
The City of Twentynine Palms Recreation Department is currently accepting registrations for the 2014 spring teen basketball league. Girls and boys in seventh through twelfth grades are eligible to register. The fee is $20 per person and includes a jersey. Register online at 29palms.org or at the recreation office in Twentynine Palms through Friday, April 4. For additional information call Ricky at 760-367-7562.
Yesterday, the Twentynine Palms High School Wildcats boys’ tennis team traveled to PGA West in La Quinta to compete in their second pre-season tournament against Coachella Valley High School Arabs. Wildcats put up a strong fight against the Arabs. The tournament ended in a 9 sets to 9 sets tie. It came down to counting games won and the ’Cats lost 78 games to Arabs’ 80 games. Coach Larry Batle said Jarod Burks won all three sets in his first season sweep. Edgar Sosa and his doubles partner Scott Clinkscales won two out of three sets…Sam Choi and partner Vincent Thomas won two out of three and Marcus Simon and partner Brain Gaddis won two out of three.
Coming up in high school sports tomorrow, the Yucca Valley High School and Twentynine Palms High School girls’ softball team will be in the second day of a two-day tournament in Palms. Springs.
The Twentynine Palms High School track team will participate in the Grizzly Invitation at Los Osos. The meet starts at 8 a.m.
The following is an editorial opinion by Z107.7 reporter Dan Stork, occasioned by a school board meeting he covered recently…
A few years ago, a policeman in Orange County stopped me after he saw me running across a street against a red light. He said, “I’m not going to give you a ticket for jaywalking. I want you to think about the example you’re setting for a child who might see you doing that.” This lesson came back to me after the Board of Education meeting Tuesday night.
I have always had a strong sympathy with labor unions and, as a long-time teacher myself, I have an appreciation for and understanding of the dedication and sacrifices of most teachers and others who choose to work with children. I say this to make it clear that the point of this editorial has nothing to do with the issues raised by school district employees at the Tuesday meeting. It has to do with civility and setting an example for children. It was commendable and appropriate that a large number of teachers and classified employees came to the meeting, and supported their colleagues who spoke during the public comment opportunity with cheers and applause and posters. But, turning their backs to the Superintendent en masse while she spoke was just plain rude. Even more appalling to me was the shouting and interruptions that went on while the Board members tried to discuss the business of the school district. I am glad that that night’s proceedings were not televised. If they had been, the children of this community would have seen some of the people who serve as their most frequent models of adult behavior acting as a mob. Please, act like grownups. Children may be watching.
Speaking for myself, I’m Dan Stork.
It ain’t over ’til it’s over. The effort to build a Dollar General retail store in Joshua tree has been halted—at least for now—by a San Bernardino County court. Reporter Dan Stork explains what the judge agreed with, and what he didn’t…
According to court minutes released Tuesday morning, Judge Donald Alvarez granted the petition to overturn the County’s approval of a planned Dollar General retail store in Joshua Tree, with regard to the mitigated negative declaration and the conditional use permit, on the grounds of the failure to properly analyze the project’s impacts on the environment in the area of economic impacts resulting in urban decay. The county is required to undertake an Environmental Impact Report for the proposed project. The Joshua Tree Downtown Business Alliance, which had filed the suit against Dynamic Development and San Bernardino County over the project approval, applauded the ruling. The court did reject other grounds that the JTDBA put forward in its suit: traffic impact, land use consistency, and the failure by the developer to identify the store as a Dollar General.
The County Coroner’s office has identified the victim of Sunday night’s shooting in Twentynine Palms. Marine Corporal Steven Kohus, 26, was a motor transport mechanic attached to 1st Battalion, 7th Marine Regiment. The Marine accused of killing Kohus, Brock Myers, 22, is a motor transport operator with 1/7. On Sunday, about 9:20 p.m., Sheriff’s deputies went to a home in the 7300 block of Saladin Avenue where they found Kohus dead from a gunshot wound. Myers was still at the scene and arrested without incident. Brock Myers pleaded not guilty to murder in Joshua Tree Superior Court Wednesday and is being held without bail in West Valley Detention Center.
The hilarious “Farndale” comedy opened last weekend at Theater 29 and runs through March 29. Managing Editor Tami Roleff offers this review of the comedy…
How do you review a play that’s SUPPOSED to be badly acted? In Theatre 29’s current production, the Farndale Avenue Housing Estate Townswomen’s Guild Dramatic Society Murder Mystery, directed by Marty Nieder, you are watching the Society’s four incredibly incompetent women—and their poor stage manager who is roped in at the last minute—try to put on a murder mystery play while playing the parts of at least a dozen different characters. In this play within a play, everything that can go wrong, does go wrong, to hilarious effect. I haven’t heard such laughter from the audience in a long time. It’s not easy for talented and accomplished actors and backstage hands to perform badly—missing cues, getting the lines wrong, forgetting props, and more. All the actors—Mandi Pushkar, Amanda Winters, Char Childs, Leonard Weber, and Donette Swain—are good enough to portray bad actors trying to perform a bad play really well, and are accomplished at slapstick: falling, tumbling, being dragged, and all the bumps and thumps. And don’t forget the stage hands, Brianna Sears and Curtis Mohn, who bring lots of laughs of their own. Donette Swain absolutely sparkles as Phoebe Reece, whose last death scene (yes, she “dies” several times) takes the art of a slow death to new levels. There were several times during the play when I wondered whether Mandi Pushkar’s effort to keep a straight face was part of her act, or if she was seriously trying to not burst out laughing at her castmates. Leonard Weber is a riot in his role of Inspector O’Reilly, a very bumbling, Closeau-like character. Amanda Winters’ role as the Colonel brings guffaws, and Char Childs plays the glamours Miss Farndale, whose muttered snarls turn into smiles for her audience. Marty Nieder directs this play with humor and tongue in cheek, making Farndale an entertaining and enjoyable romp.
Performances are Friday and Saturday nights at 7:00 p.m. through March 29. A matinee performance will be this Sunday and March 23rd at 2:30 PM. Tickets are $8 through $12 and are available at theatre29.org or by calling the Theatre 29 Box Office at 760-361-4151.