Tag Archives: local news

‘Corn Festival’? ‘Hemp Festival’? Your ideas for an annual West Sac celebration


  EDITOR’S NOTE: The News-Ledger recently got to wondering whether West Sacramento ought to take another stab at coming up with its own annual festival to celebrate. So we posted the following question on our Facebook web page, and received the suggestions below:

“All right: so Woodland has a tomato festival (coming up on Aug 11). Isleton has a crawdad festival. Sacramento has a jazz festival. What should West Sac celebrate with a festival?”

  Billy Mistler: a Whitey’s Special festival.

  Gloria Pedroza-Madrid: Nice, Billy! But I will work with you, how about Whitey’s Peach milkshake festival!!!

  Sarah Wilson: Rice. Port of Sacramento.

  Cynthia ‘Cindi’ Islas: Corn festival.

  Denice Seals: How ‘bout a weekly Farmers Market! (Editor’s note: Denice heads up the local chamber of commerce, which happens to sponsor a Thursday-night farmers market!)

  Joshua Williams: Beer Cheese and Wine Festival!

  Katie Adams: beer festival!!

  Eve Westvik: A tamale festival.

Mary Brookins: Rice!

  Nathan Mccully: a drug and alcohol recovery festival and watermelon.

Dillon Stenholm: Hemp fest.

Pj Hargrove Bonfield: Something to highlight the Port.

  Debby Fricano: Corn festival!

  Julia McMichael: The Jazz Society is West Sacramento. Duh.

  David Prescott: West Sacramento Free Adult Vaccine-Preventable Diseases Festival.

  Yes, you can support local journalism, support this website, and see all the News-Ledger’s articles every week! Subscribe to the News-Ledge newspaper. It’s only $20 per year within West Sacramento – once a week, delivered to your mailbox.

  You can even try it for free for two months if you live in West Sacramento. Just send your name and mailing address to FreeTrial@news-ledger.com (offer open to new subscribers in West Sacramento ZIP codes 95691 & 95605).

Copyright News-Ledger 2012

‘Mountain Lions’ move to Raley Field


West Sacramento will get another “minor league” sports team:

  The Mountain Lions of the United Football League announced Friday they will begin playing their home games at Raley Field, current home of the River Cats baseball team.

The field will be reconfigured for American football when the Mountain Lions play in West Sacramento on Sept. 28, Oct. 10, Nov. 2 and Nov. 7.

The team previously played at Sacramento State.

In other news for Raley Field, the ballpark announced yesterday that it will host a soccer game from Mexico’s First Division League on Sept. 8.

Club Atletico Monarcas Morelia will face the San Luis FC in an 8 p.m. game, with tickets going on sale Thursday at Raley Field at at ticketmaster.com. It will be an exhibition match sanctioned by U.S. Soccer.

Copyright News-Ledger 2012

Blood drive today at city hall


You’re invited to drop off a little of the red stuff during a City of West Sacramento blood drive on Wednesday, Aug. 15, at city hall.

A Sacramento BloodSource mobile coach will be in the parking lot at 1110 West Capitol Avenue from 9:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. for appointments (call Kryss Rankin, 617-4500). Walk-ins taken when space is available.

Copyright News-Ledger 2012

Boxing champ runs for council

OLEG MASKAEV (2007 by D. Warnbolt/Wikipedia for public domain)


The first challenger has “pulled papers” to enter the West Sacramento Council race — and it’s a face that’s new to local politics, if not new to the public eye.

Oleg Maskaev, a former WBC heavyweight boxing champion who lives in Southport, West Sacramento, has taken the first step toward entering the race against that includes incumbents Oscar Villegas and Bill Kristoff.

Maskaev was born in the former Soviet Union and has lived in the U.S. since 1999, becoming a citizen in 2004, reports the online site Wikipedia.

Deadline for Maskaev or other candidates to file their paperwork for the race is this Friday, although that deadline will be extended if either of the incumbents fails to file.

His campaign manager, David Joyce, identified himself online as affiliated with the “Tea Party” faction of the Republican party.

No other challengers have picked up candidacy paperwork for either the mayor’s race (against incumbent Christopher Cabaldon) or the council race, reported the city clerk yesterday.

UPDATE AUG 13, 2012: The deadline closed Friday for candidates to file their paperwork to enter either the West Sacramento city council or mayoral campaign.

  Maskaev did complete his campaign candidate paperwork, reported the West Sacramento City Clerk. But no other challengers emerged to face city council incumbents Bill Kristoff or Oscar Villegas, or to face mayor Christopher Cabaldon.

  Yes, you can support local journalism, support this website, and see all the News-Ledger’s articles every week! Subscribe to the News-Ledge newspaper. It’s only $20 per year within West Sacramento – once a week, delivered to your mailbox.

  You can even try it for free for two months if you live in West Sacramento. Just send your name and mailing address to FreeTrial@news-ledger.com (offer open to new subscribers in West Sacramento ZIP codes 95691 & 95605).

Copyright News-Ledger 2012

Three ‘cooling centers’ in West Sac


Need a place to chill out during this heat wave? Do you know somebody — perhaps an elderly person — who has trouble staying cool at his or her home when it gets hot out?

There are three West Sacramento “cooling stations” available, reports city spokesperson Art Schroeder.

Two are city-run facilities: the community center at 1075 West Capitol Avenue and the Recreation center next to River City High School in Southport. The county’s Arthur F. Turner Branch of the library at 1212 Merkley Avenue is a third location.

Details from spokesperson Schroeder:

“On the north side of town the Community Center, 1075 West Capitol Ave., will be a cooling center during business hours (M-F 8 a.m.-7:30 p.m.; Saturdays 9 a.m.-2 p.m.; closed Sundays).

“The Arthur F. Turner Community Library, 1212 Merkley Ave., will be a cooling center during its business hours, but specifically 10 a.m.-5:30 p.m. on Saturday, and 1 p.m.-5 p.m. on Sunday.

“On the south side of town the Recreation Center, 2801 Jefferson Blvd., will be a cooling center during its business hours (M-F 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Sat./Sun. 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.)

“Stay hydrated! Water is available at all sites, but bringing a re-useable water bottle’s not a bad idea. Dress in layers so you can shed layers when in the shade and add to cover skin when in direct sunlight. The cooling centers are air-conditioned, so dressing in layers would be helpful as well. Comfortable seating is available.”

Copyright News-Ledger 2012

Spare the air: free bus on Tuesday


With tomorrow’s temperature expected to reach about 112 degrees, contributing to bad air quality, a regional “Spare the Air” day has been declared. Among other things, this means some local bus service will be offered free. Here’s the full text of a press release from YoloBus in Yolo County:

“Tuesday, August 14, 2012 has been designated by the Sacramento Metropolitan Air Quality Management District as a “Spare the Air” day.   Rides on YOLOBUS and Unitrans fixed route services will be provided at no charge to riders because of this “Spare the Air Day” designation. Also, riders of YOLOBUS paratransit services will not be charged a fare on those days.

“This summer, when the Air Quality Index (AQI) is expected to exceed “127” for ozone levels, the Air District sends out an announcement at least the day before.

“Additionally, because the temperature forecast is significant for Tuesday, both YOLOBUS and Unitrans are advising passengers to stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water and  staying indoors as long as possible (until their buses arrive), particularly in the afternoon.

 “How can a rider find out if their bus is on time without being out there in the heat of the day?  YOLOBUS riders can get real time information on where their bus is simply by going to the Yolobus.com web site and clicking on “automatic vehicle location system”, or going to http://avl.yctd.org/.

“This free-ride incentive program on YOLOBUS is funded by the Sacramento Area Council of Governments and the Yolo-Solano Air Quality Management District.  Likewise, Unitrans, which serves the City of Davis, surrounding area, and U.C. Davis campus, will offer free rides on Spare the Air days as well.  This free-ride offer does not apply to Sacramento Regional Transit buses or light rail and free transfers to that system will not be issued.

“Five-day forecasts for ozone are available at  www.sparetheair.com and Spare the Air days are determined a day in advance which helps people plan to use alternative transportation, including bus, carpooling, walking and bicycling. Residents can also receive personal notification through Air Alert, a free service available by signing up at www.myairalert.net.  On declared “Spare the Air” days anyone can ride YOLOBUS for free.

“Bus schedules are available by contacting YOLOBUS at 530-666-2877 or www.yolobus.com, as well as UNITRANS at 530-752-2877 or www.Unitrans.com.”

From the West Sacramento News-Ledger 2012

Letter from the Publisher: ‘I believe I see the future of the News-Ledger’


A proposal to take the News-Ledger into the distant future — with ambitious plans and true local control.

With this edition of the News-Ledger, we begin our 49th year of service to West Sacramento. Milestones like this always cause me to reflect.

I’ve been the publisher and editor here for over 20 years (a thousand Wednesdays!) and I became the majority owner of the News-Ledger following the death of owner Michael Garten several years ago. Michael and the late Julius Feher founded the News-Ledger in 1964, and it’s been publishing “the first draft of history” in West Sacramento ever since.

Julius Feher — in case you didn’t know this — was a very remarkable man. Newspaper ink was in his blood, it seems. Julius started his first West Sacramento newspaper at age 12. It was no “kiddie” paper; it was the real thing — he wrote the news articles, sold ads, and distributed the paper himself. Julius was written up for his youthful efforts in “Boys Life” magazine and in “Ripley’s Believe It Or Not.”

First edition of West Sacramento's News-Ledger, from 1964. Subscription rate was one dollar a year. (News-Ledger archives)

Feher’s newspapering career was interrupted several times, including by wartime service in the Army. But for Julius, running a newspaper that served his beloved town was always in his heart. As a reporter and editor, Julius earned a reputation as being careful with the facts and scrupulously fair, even when sharing his own opinions in a newspaper editorial.

His business partner Michael Garten had a different temperament — one full of fire. Michael enjoyed a good argument more than just about anything else. Michael once recounted to me something like this:

“After some local community meeting would go wrong, Julius would be up all night in the office, typing a great editorial,” said Mike. “He’d hold nothing back. He’d really blast the bad guys. It would be perfect — and then he’d tear it up and he’d rewrite the editorial from scratch, and the new version would be the epitome of reason and diplomacy. What a tragedy!”

JULIUS FEHER, in a photo take several decades ago. The founding editor of this newspaper was dedicated to serving his hometown. (News-Ledger archives)

This newspaper has always tried to inform the public and to serve as a local watchdog when needed, and to provide a little entertainment from time to time. We’ve been here through various developer wars, through drinking water troubles, the city’s incorporation, the master planning of Southport, casino proposals, troubles in the school district. A lot of water has flowed under the bridge in 49 years.

Since becoming the majority owner of this newspaper, I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about its past and its future. In the meantime, the world has been doing a lot of changing. Julius didn’t live long enough see either the wonders of the Internet or how it would squeeze his beloved industry, but the web is here and it has taught us some things. And the rise of other media (as well as other cultural changes and the Great Recession) have reduced the number of people who read newspapers since Julius’s day.

Yet, there is good news for us, too. We know that local papers are doing better than the big ones, and they will probably continue to do so. We know that the Internet and social media present great opportunities for a news organization to expand and attract readers.

And we know that even in this new era, people still value good journalism. If you make good, relevant news reporting easy for people to get on their smartphone or computer, or on their driveway or in their mailbox, they’ll want to read it. As a lot of websites have learned the hard way, “content” still matters.

The News-Ledger is in great position to expand its role as West Sacramento’s best-trusted source of news and local information, in print and on the web. But what the News-Ledger needs most is even more professional journalism, along with more “content” of other kinds. A great city needs at least one news source staffed professional journalists with good skills and high standards — other things can augment good reporting, but nothing has been invented to replace it.

So the News-Ledger needs to grow. It needs to be bigger, to do more, and to reach more people in more ways.

There are different ways to reach these goals. But my purpose today is to tell you about the path I’m pursuing as a first choice. It’s this:

What if we plan for the News-Ledger to be taken over some day by you? How about if we create a nonprofit organization to run West Sacramento’s newspaper (including its digital media)? What if everyone in West Sacramento could be part of this nonprofit, and each of them would have a vote on how the news organization should do its job?

The new organization would be loyal to West Sacramento because it is operated by West Sacramento — and not by some special interest group or out-of-town corporation. It would be free of the need to earn profits to send back to corporate headquarters. It would have a wide base of support from its members in the community. And it would be able to accept grant money and tax-deductible gifts to help make ends meet.

A small group of people has been helping me flesh out this idea over the past couple of years. We’re in the process of creating this nonprofit organization right now. We hope this future nonprofit will acquire the News-Ledger (and the WestSac.com website, and so forth) and build on the assets already in place. We hope it will turn a pretty good little paper into a really great bigger paper. We believe it will help knit together West Sacramento as an online information source as well as a traditional newspaper. We expect it to support local journalism classes and projects, and maybe offer a “Julius A. Feher Journalism Scholarship” someday.

As with most ventures, money matters to this project. The nonprofit will need cash. One vital way you can help is by considering a donation or a gift from your estate. The new nonprofit isn’t ready to accept donations directly, but the well-respected West Sacramento Foundation has graciously agreed to accept any gifts, donations or bequests for this venture through a new “Julius A. Feher Fund” at the West Sacramento Foundation. Contact me or the Foundation for information.

There will be other ways you can help the new organization.  We’ll keep you informed.

So what do you think?

I think that a news organization “by West Sacramento, for West Sacramento” born to serve and connect this community is a terrific idea. It’s not the only choice for the future of the News-Ledger, but it’s absolutely my first choice.

I’d be proud of this new West Sacramento community venture. And I think that Julius and Michael would be proud of it, too.

The News-Ledger
Aug. 8, 2012

  To comment on this article, please visit the same article at WestSac.com by clicking here. Your comment may be published in the News-Ledger.

Copyright News-Ledger 2012