SANTA VISIT IN PLACERVILLE: Santa will be at the CandyStripe Emporium at 398 Main St., Placerville, on Dec.14 from 1 to 4 p.m. If desired (but not required) photos with Santa will be available for purchase from HeraCain Photography.
TOYS FOR TOTS UPDATE: The very last chance to donate a new, unwrapped toy to the Marine Toys for Tots program is Sunday, Dec. 15, at 451 Main St., Placerville. The Creekside Place merchants are the last scheduled pick up before the 2013 toy drive ends. You can bring your new, unwrapped toys to Polished Nail Salon or the Levee, on Dec. 15, between 11 a.m. and 4 p.m. For more information, call Sue Henderson at 530-344-9384.
ROTARIAN OF THE MONTH: Cameron Park Rotarian Vickie Christensen was recently honored with the “Rotarian of the Month” award. The Rotary newsletter noted the following regarding Vickie: “Vickie is instrumental with encouraging our community and our members to become involved with our clubs community projects. Through social media, Vickie does an outstanding job in keeping the community aware of what is being done not only within our own community but internationally. Thank you so much, Vickie, for all you do for Rotary!”
SWEET TOOTH INFORMATION: Mother Lode Lions Club continues to sell See’s candy to support the Lions Club efforts to help those in need in our community. The “candy shack” is located in the parking lot of the club at the corner of Missouri Flat Rd. and Pleasant Valley Rd., Diamond Springs. The candy shack is open every day (including weekends) from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Special orders are accepted.
P.J. STORYTIME: “P.J. Storytime” at the Placerville Main Library, 345 Fair Lane, is normally on the 4th Wednesday of each month at 6:30 p.m. Because Christmas falls on the 4th Wednesday, the December session will be on Dec. 18. Bring the little ones in their P.J.’s. For more information, call 530-621-5547.
BRAIN BREAKFAST: A class titled “Brain Connections” meets on the 3rd Friday of each month at 10 a.m. at the El Dorado Hills Senior Center, 990 Lassen Lane. You can nourish your body and your brain by enjoying breakfast with this group. After breakfast, you and other attendees will identify practical ways to increase memory and stay mentally sharp. Reservations are a must! Call 916-358-3575 to reserve your spot. The class fee is $5. Judy Bakke is the facilitator.
REMEMBERING THE CHILDREN: “Community Gift Trees” contain the first names of children, their ages and their Christmas wishes. You can select a name or two, and provide Christmas gifts to children from low-income families. Community gift trees are located at the following locations through Dec. 9: El Dorado Hills Library, Placerville Library, and Placerville Main St. Court House. For drop-off options of gifts, call Kathy at 530-676-0707 or Liz at 530-295-2305.
SUPPORT OUR FIREFIGHTERS: For our plan-aheaders, the following information is offered: The Pioneer Volunteer Firefighters Assoc. will offer their annual crab banquets. The banquets will be held at Perry Creek Winery on Saturday, Jan. 11 and Jan. 18, and at Skinner Winery on Jan. 25 and Feb. 1. Additional information and option of buying tickets for the events are available by calling 530-306-4852 or pioneervolunteerfire.org/crab-banquet. The website also includes links to local lodging options if needed. This is an event you do not want to miss!
QUIT SMOKING SERIES: Marshall Medical is sponsoring classes titled “Smoking Cessation Series” on Mondays, Jan 6 through Feb. 17, 5:30 to 7:30 p.m., in Placerville. This is a seven-week series designed to help you become smoke free, based on American Lung Association curriculum. Scholarships are available for the class fee, thanks to the Marshall Foundation for Community Health. Pre-registration is required. To register, call 530-626-2990.
ADVICE FROM A TURTLE: John Chapman provided the following “Advice from a Turtle” T-shirt statement: “Come out of your shell * Be well-rounded * Slow down * Know when to stick your neck out * Log time with friends * Home is where your heart is * Snap out of it!
ALL ABOARD! Weather permitting, you can ride the train on Sundays from noon to 4 p.m. On Dec. 15, the train will be at the El Dorado Station at 6000 Oriental St., town of El Dorado (next to the El Dorado Community Hall). A $5 donation is requested for ages 9 and up. A $3 donation for kids, age 3 to 8, is appreciated.
DAY TRIP TO LAKE TAHOE: On Sunday, Dec. 22, a day trip is scheduled to South Lake Tahoe from 9:15 a.m. to 7 p.m. The charter bus departs and returns to Raley’s parking lot in El Dorado Hills. The trip fee is $37. Pat Thomsen is the trip escort. A $20 slot voucher and a $7 lunch voucher to Harrah’s/Harvey’s is available to “Players Card” holders. If you need a card, one will be supplied. Registration deadline is one week prior to Dec. 22. To register, call 916-358-3575.
FREE CAREGIVER SUPPORT GROUP: A free caregiver support group meets on the second Tuesday of every month from 2:30 to 4 p.m. at the Greenwood Community Center, 4401 Highway 193. Free respite care is available to qualified caregivers. Pre-authorization is required for respite services. For more information, call 530-621-6151.
BINGO! On Mondays and Thursdays from 12 to 1:30 p.m., Bingo is played at the El Dorado Hills Senior Center, 990 Lassen Lane. Local grocers, Raley’s and the Nugget, offer discount purchases of their $5 gift cards, which players can win. You pay $3 for 2 bingo cards. Drop-ins are always welcome.
A DALAI DILLY: The “Insight from the Dalai Lama” calendar notes the following observation: “When I consider the lack of cooperation in human society, I can only conclude that it stems from ignorance of our interdependent nature.”
DON’T DEPEND ON OTHERS: Clara Neilsen gave me the book, “Live and Learn and Pass It On,” which offers the following life lesson: “I’ve learned that if you depend on others to make you happy, you’ll be endlessly disappointed.” – Age 60
READ THE SIGN, LADY! Jewel Blair-Smith forwarded the following “Gains and Snickers” statement: “I was in the six item express lane at the store, quietly fuming. Completely ignoring the sign, the woman ahead of me had slipped into the check-out line pushing a cart piled high with groceries. Imagine my delight when the cashier beckoned the woman to come forward, looked into the cart, and asked sweetly, ‘So, which six items would you like to buy?’ (Wouldn’t it be great if that happened more often?)”
ADVENTURE BOOKS: Our libraries have a pamphlet titled “I Love Adventure Books!” Stop by and check out the list of over 35 adventure books available at the library.
Send your jokes and event items for Heard Over the Back Fence column three weeks in advance to Bob Billingsley at the Mountain Democrat, PO Box 1088, Placerville 95667, or drop them off at 2889 Ray Lawyer Dr. First and last name of contact person are required. Phone 530-344-5036. Follow @BBillingsleyMtDemo on Twitter.