Patrick Ibarra

Placerville man arrested in sexual predator case

A Placerville man was booked into county jail after a 15-year-old boy said to be the intended victim of the alleged sexual predator helped the El Dorado County Sheriff’s Department set up his capture. Glenn O’Rourke, 26, was taken into custody after an arrest warrant was requested for O’Rourke through the District Attorney’s Office. On […]


In Wednesday’s Mountain Democrat, the story “Hwy 50 near EDH to close for blasting operations April 13″ listed a phone number to contact with question with the wrong area code. The phone number to contact is actually 916-599-5673.

Day Shelter closes along with Nomadic Shelter

The Day Shelter, housed within Christlike Services at 7500 Green Valley Road, will close today, in conjunction with the closing of the Nomadic Shelter, a press release from the city of Placerville stated. “The city of Placerville and El Dorado County express our appreciation to the owners of Christlike Services for their assistance during the […]

Man tries to blow up house

An unidentified male threatened to blow up his house on March 29, and as deputies arrived, an explosion within the home occurred, according to the El Dorado County Sheriff’s Office. At approximately 3 p.m., a male living in Pollock Pines called 911 with the threat, a press release from the Sheriff’s Office stated. Deputies arrived […]

Take my word for it: I don’t know everything

The only true wisdom is in knowing you know nothing. — Socrates Contrary to what I believed as a teenager, I’ve realized that I don’t know everything. Shoot, I don’t even know much of anything, really. In fact, the more I learn, the more I see how much I don’t know. Some say that ignorance […]

Take my word for it: Political speak

I attended the California Newspaper Publishers Association Governmental Affairs Day on Feb. 19 in Sacramento, and boy did I a learn a lot. It was an eye-opening experience for sure, but the thing that stuck out the most to me is that politicians, at least the ones I got to listen to, really know what […]

Take my word for it: Time to grow up

At some point in our lives we all have to make a decision. We have to decide if the choices we are making with our lives are beneficial or detrimental to those we love around us. Or, put more simply, if those we love around us are worth keeping around. When children grow into adulthood, […]

Mr. Pickle’s offers new drive-through service, same great sandwich

Mr. Pickle’s has a reputation of making one heck of a sandwich. It’s for this reason alone Owner Claude Sutherland decided to take a chance on the struggling business in Placerville when he purchased it and took it over in December of 2013. The first thing he attacked was the drive-through. “At the time we […]


The article “Martin Luther King, Jr. Day closures in effect” in Friday’s newspaper incorrectly stated that El Dorado Disposal would be closed on Monday fro the holiday. The main office of El Dorado Disposal will be open on Jan. 20.


The article “Charles Mitchell demonstrates the magic of wine” in the 2013 Secrets of Success, part 2, incorrectly states that Pizza and Lobster Night at Charles B. Mitchell Vineyards, 8221 Stoney Creek Road in Fair Play, every Friday features unlimited pizza, pasta, lobster and salad for $10. The menu is unlimited pizza, pasta and salad […]

Take my word for it: The gifts of Christmas

“Then the Grinch thought of something he hadn’t before! What if Christmas, he thought, doesn’t come from a store. What if Christmas … perhaps … means a little bit more!” ― Dr. Seuss, How the Grinch Stole Christmas! We watched the movie versions of the classic Dr. Seuss story — both the cartoon one and […]


The date given for Christmas in Coloma at Marshall Gold Discovery State Historic Park in Coloma in the El Dorado County Adventures Magazine was incorrect. Christmas in Coloma will take place Saturday and Sunday, Dec. 14 and 15 from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. at the park on Highway 49. There is an $8 parking fee. For […]

Take my word for it: Embracing the Christmas spirit … already

I was in a store last month looking to buy the finishing touches to my Halloween costume and heard a Christmas song being played in one of the aisles. I started humming along to the tune and then stopped dead in my tracks. Wait, already? It was the end of October, and this major chain […]

Take my word for it: How do we do it?

In passing, someone asked me recently, “How do we do it?” When I gave her a puzzled look, she said, “How do we do what we do? How does everyone do what they do?” She was referring to surviving, getting through life one day at a time. Most of us have stressful jobs and we […]

Best Body Shop: Stymeist Auto Body

Four a fourth straight year Stymeist has been crowned, a deserved honor for a business that continues to rack up positive feedback for its services. Steve Stymeist Auto Body Collision Center is a Direct Repair Facility shop, meaning it’s been selected as an approved repair facility in the insurance industry. It’s been through a rigorous criteria […]

October 16, 2013 | Posted in Readers Choice 2013 | Leave a reply

Best Printer: Minuteman Press

The business location has changed, but the same great service remains. Minuteman Press, now located on Placerville Drive, offers every sort of business communication service a customer could need. From black-and-white to color copies, to business cards, binding, design and even lamination, the business is a one-stop shop for anyone looking to get a message […]

October 16, 2013 | Posted in Readers Choice 2013 | Leave a reply

Best Men’s Shop: Combellack’s

A business doesn’t last over 125 years without providing a quality product several generations in a community can thoroughly enjoy. That’s what Combellack’s has done on Placerville’s Main Street, attracting young and old to shop and enjoy a bit of history in the process. Voters seem to be attracted to the clothing the shop offers, […]

October 15, 2013 | Posted in Readers Choice 2013 | Leave a reply

Best Meat Market/Butcher Shop: Archer’s Butcher Block

Top-quality cuts of meat can be found at Archer’s Butcher Block in Placerville as soon as you walk through the door. From choices of beef, pork and chicken, the meat market and delicatessen is a meat-lover’s paradise. But that’s not all it has to offer. The shop also offers an amazing selection of exotic meats, from […]

October 16, 2013 | Posted in Readers Choice 2013 | Leave a reply

Best Floor Covering Store: Dick’s Carpet One

Locally owned and operated since 1964, Dick’s Carpet One started as a small store in Camino but has blossomed into a big one in Diamond Springs including a 10,000-square-foot showroom. A member of America’s largest specialty flooring retailer, it provides customers prices and extensive warranties only a big organization can offer, but with a local […]

October 17, 2013 | Posted in Readers Choice 2013 | Leave a reply

Best Heating/AC: Gilmore Heating-Air-Solar

“It’s all about trust.” It’s a motto Gilmore has built a foundation around, and a mentality that customers have learned to rely on when shopping for their heating, air and solar needs. From highly efficient central air units to heat pumps, propane heaters and solar systems, Gilmore provides stellar service and reliable products. Highly trained technicians […]

October 16, 2013 | Posted in Readers Choice 2013 | Leave a reply

Best Ice Cream/Frozen Yogurt: Whistle Stop

Given the Small Business of the Year award by the Sierra Economic Development Corporation for 2012, the Whistle Stop Yogurt Shop on Main Street in Placerville keep things tasty in 2013, swaying voters in its direction for Best Ice Cream/Frozen Yogurt shop. “Our yogurt is a real individualized treat and people can be as creative as […]

October 15, 2013 | Posted in Readers Choice 2013 | Leave a reply

Best Auto Repair: The Toy Shop

“Toyota and Honda specialists” in Shingle Springs, staff at the Toy Shop have earned the trust of locals looking for fairly priced repairs of their vehicles. Voted “Best Auto Repair” by readers, the Toy Shop keeps customers satisfied with results on both customers’ vehicles and pocketbooks. The full service and repair shop and its ASE […]

October 09, 2013 | Posted in Readers Choice 2013 | Leave a reply

Best Stove/Fireplace Store: Stoves ‘N’ Stuff

Stoves ‘N’ Stuff is a one-stop shop offering wood, pellet, gas or electric hearth products. The staff has over 75 years of combined experience, and a wealth of knowledge to handle any customer’s stove or fireplace needs. It’s been around since 1988 and is once again to top spot for voters looking for a stove […]

October 09, 2013 | Posted in Readers Choice 2013 | Leave a reply

Best Oil Change: Country Lube Express

There are lots of options in the county for an oil change. One place has voters continuing to praise its name. Country Lube Express is that shop, and it has a lot to offer customers. The full-service maintenance and auto repair center in Diamond Springs specializes in car care services, brakes, general services, undercar services, […]

October 09, 2013 | Posted in Readers Choice 2013 | Leave a reply

Best Bicycle Store: Placerville Bike Shop

“Family owned, family oriented.” The sentiment is what Placerville Bike Shop prides itself in, and what it aims to continue to provide in service to the community. It’s no wonder owner Bob Molinari and wife Barbara have owned the shop since 1977 and why you’ll find their sons Jeff and Andrew working at the store […]

October 15, 2013 | Posted in Readers Choice 2013 | Leave a reply

Best Art Gallery: Gold Country Artists

A true collaborative gallery, Gold Country Artists on Main Street in Placerville showcases the talents of a wide range of artists in the area. From artistic gourds to wood, glass, oils and acrylics, the art in the gallery is unique. There’s even jewelry, mixed media, pastels, photography, pottery, water-color art and more from a who’s […]

October 15, 2013 | Posted in Readers Choice 2013 | Leave a reply

Best Kennel: Uppity Pup

Uppity Pup was voted Best Kennel for the fourth straight year, appreciated by readers for continuing to provide a “second home” for their dogs. The indoor facility, which houses dogs in high-quality enclosures and offers a large play and exercise area with equipment to stimulate and exercise pets, continues to provide exceptional care and personal […]

October 15, 2013 | Posted in Readers Choice 2013 | Leave a reply

Best BBQ: Back Forty Texas BBQ

At the heart of Back Forty Texas BBQ’s success in Shingle Springs is mouth-watering food smothered in award-winning sauce. Offered are a pound, half-pound or quarter-pound of pork ribs, beef ribs, whole chicken, chopped beef, pulled pork, sliced beef, sliced pork and sliced turkey. Soups and salads are also on the menu, along with desserts […]

October 15, 2013 | Posted in Readers Choice 2013 | Leave a reply

Best Asian: Hong Kong Inn

The Hong Kong Inn Chinese Restaurant in Placerville has voters raving about high-quality food at a reasonable price. It’s no wonder it was voted Best Asian, with mouth-watering offerings of egg rolls, wings and even Chinese doughnuts as appetizers to get you started. Fried rice of all varieties — including chicken, roast pork, beef, ham, […]

October 15, 2013 | Posted in Readers Choice 2013 | Leave a reply

Best Salon: The Look Salon

Achieve the look you’ve always wanted while relaxing in a peaceful atmosphere with this year’s winner: The Look Salon. Located in Placerville, the Look Salon offers precision cutting, expert coloring and professional styling for your hair, but also a full array of spa services to pamper customers. Trends and techniques are always changing, but The Look stays […]

October 03, 2013 | Posted in Readers Choice 2013 | Leave a reply

Best Paint Store: The Paint Spot

The Paint Spot has been serving El Dorado County for over 50 years. It’s lasted that long not simply because it sells quality Benjamin Moore and Pittsburgh paint, but because it gives its customers the attention they deserve. Proudly hosting two locations, one in Placerville and another in Shingle Springs, the paint store has professionals on […]

October 03, 2013 | Posted in Readers Choice 2013 | Leave a reply


In the Monday editorial on page A4, Greg Prada’s name was misspelled in the headline.


The tree in the picture of the front page of Monday’s newspaper was incorrectly labeled as a pistachio tree. It is a “pistacia chinesis,” commonly called a “Chinese pistache.”

Take my word for it: A lost tooth

I can’t remember how I lost my first tooth. But my daughter won’t have that problem. We have the video to prove it. On Oct. 19, my 5-year-old approached us with a problem. “Look how loose my tooth is. I want it to come out already.” She had her first loose tooth on the bottom […]

Take my word for it: Case of the Mondays

I was having a bad case of the Mondays the other day. With writer’s block all morning, and a column due by the afternoon, I started browsing the Internet for inspiration. Then I went into the break room to fill up my water bottle and ran into a co-worker who said hello. The conversation went […]

Take my word for it: Not enough hours

I heard this phrase a lot from my mother growing up: “There just aren’t enough hours in a day.” It didn’t resonate until recently, though. When I was a teen, it would drive my parents crazy whenever I’d tell them I was bored. I learned quickly to find something on my own to do because […]

Take my word for it: A dance party

As I left a Monday Night Football game to help my wife put our two rascals to bed, the dimply duo requested a dance party in the room first. These dance parties consist of multiple songs from the radio or on CD to which they, well, dance. Seeing it as an opportunity to have them […]

Take my word for it: The benefit of the doubt

“Men are wonderful. I adore them. They always give you the benefit of the doubt.” — Gene Tierney We must be suckers, because I try to always give people the benefit of the doubt. I find it’s a much better way to build relationships than assuming everyone is out to get me. Sadly, though, I’m […]

American Fire nearing 13k acres

The American Fire, a fire that began on Saturday at 4:30 p.m. near Foresthill, grew to 12,950 acres as of 11 a.m. Sunday morning, and was only 45 percent contained at that time. “Burning in heavy fuels on extreme slopes about eight miles from the community of Foresthill,” the fire spread at Deadwood Ridge and […]


A letter to the editor printed on Aug. 12 incorrectly spelled the letter writer’s name. It was by Nana Federici, and the final sentence should have read, “I am happy that I was the main one to go about getting the repair done.”

Take my word for it: Learning leadership

I graduated from the El Dorado County Chamber of Commerce’s Leadership El Dorado program on Aug. 7, and I’ve gotta say, it felt pretty good. It’s not because I didn’t expect to graduate, but because I was surprised the program would have such a profound impact on my life. Before it, I thought I’d heard […]

Take my word for it: That’s life

“That’s life, that’s what people say. You’re riding high in April, shot down in May. But I know I’m gonna change their tune; when I’m right back on top in June.” — “That’s Life” by Frank Sinatra I’m a serial complainer. When life doesn’t seem fair, I let whoever I’m talking to know my dissatisfaction […]


The photo on page A3 of Monday’s Mountain Democrat, “Open for business,” referenced an El Dorado County Chamber event welcoming a new business to town. The business was Tractor Supply at 1360 Broadway in Placerville, which officially opened its doors to the public on Saturday, July 27, and will be holding a grand opening on […]

Take my word for it: Doing my job

“All columnists should be beaten to a pulp and converted back into paper!” I laughed out loud Sunday night as I watched “Sabrina” for the first time — the 1954 version of the movie with Humphrey Bogart and Audrey Hepburn, of course, although I’ll watch anything with Harrison Ford — and heard character Oliver Larrabee […]

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