Botanist discusses Sierra area |

Botanist discusses Sierra area

Did you know that early Spanish missionaries named “La Sierra Nevada,” and that the range is more than 400 miles long?

If you want to know more, join the Redbud Chapter of the California Native Plant Society at 7 p.m. Thursday at Hennessy Elementary School. Sierra College botanist Joe Medeiros will talk about “Superlatives of the Sierra Nevada.”

This slide-illustrated celebration of the Sierra will spotlight the many aspects, biological and physical, that make our nearby snowy rage the breathtaking beauty that it is. Learn about this home of the world’s largest trees, glacially carved granite peaks and deep-soiled foothills.

Medeiros is a former state vice president of CNPS and a popular Sierra College teacher. For more information, contact Richard Hanes at 477-0643. The meeting is free and open to the public.

The Independence Trail Spring Fling Work Party is March 23 from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. This is a BYOW event: Bring Your Own Wheelbarrow – or maybe just a trash bag. Families, youth groups and individuals welcome. The purpose of this party is to groom the trail for the Easter rush. (I didn’t make that up. Do Easter bunnies use this trail for basket deliveries?)

The smooth trail is uniquely engineered with gentle slopes, enabling it to be wheelchair accessible.

To find the trail and join in the fun, take Highway 49 six miles north out of Nevada City to the trail entrance. Bring rakes, shovels, and don’t forget the wheelbarrow or trash bag. For more information, call Nita at 271-0450.

Today is Child Safety Day at the Imaginarium. The Gold Country Kiwanis and the Nevada County Sheriff’s Explorers are sponsoring this event from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Meet McGruff the Crime Dog. Receive a free personalized identification card, complete with photo, fingerprints and personal information for your child.

The Imaginarium is at 161 Nevada City Highway.

Neil Bledsoe, executive director of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Nevada County, announces the results of Bowl for Kids Sake. This year’s fund-raiser was held over two weekends at Gold Bowl and Prosperity Lanes. The first installment on Feb. 23 raised $9,400, with 27 teams bowling. More than 50 teams bowled on March 9 and raised $17,300. Local business sponsors kicked in $8,500, making the total a whopping $35,200 raised during the entire campaign. We’re calling that one very successful fund-raiser!

On March 9, Big Brothers Big Sisters had many of their “Waiting Littles” (children waiting to be matched with a Big Brother or Sister) bowl with the participating teams. Several bowlers expressed serious interest in becoming a Big Brother or Sister. Bledsoe, bowled over by the results, says, “Thank you, Nevada County, for investing in your youth today. You make a difference!”

Pam Fortner is a free-lance writer in Grass Valley. Her column on nonprofits appears each Saturday. Deadline for information is 5 p.m. each Monday. The column will appear in the following Saturday edition. Send information to Pamela Fortner at The Union, 464 Sutton Way, Grass Valley 95945; e-mail to

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