Lorraine’s Lowdown: Return of a star | TheUnion.com
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Lorraine’s Lowdown: Return of a star

By Lorraine Jewett | Special to The Union

Longtime Locals Were Delighted to see the star brightly shining over the holidays on the old Canon ranch barn. The star was once again illuminated on the rustic barn in a field on the east side of the Golden Center Freeway between GeeVee and NevCity. Back in the day, Don Canon created one plywood star, made two more, then added a myriad of steel Christmas decorations. Brothers Vern and John Canon decided to light the star this year in memory of Don, who passed away in November 2019. “The star has been up on that barn for more than four decades,” says John. “Don was always passionate about Christmas.” Adds Vern, “Don loved making things, such as trains, angels, American flags and stars…”

The Canon family barn is emblazoned with a shining star, bringing joy and hope to our humble hamlet.
Submitted to The Union

More Meaningful than a Christmas Bonus, Sierra Nevada Memorial Hospital President and CEO Brian Evans wrote a tribute to hospital staff and volunteers. Here is a small sample of the admiration and respect he has for his team…

So as we gather ourselves, for what lies ahead,



The pandemic, or fires, or some other dread.

Know that I appreciate you, for all that you do,



Little things. Big things. And medium things too.

You’re the best team I’ve known, working with you is a thrill,

You are Great Sierra Nevadans. All of you. In this beacon on the hill…

Kudos to SaveMart. Instead of reducing the price of Christmas trees in its lot as the holiday approached, the grocery store offered trees to shoppers at no cost…

Much Appreciation to Staff at GeeVee and NevCity, and the towns’ respective chambers/downtown organizations, for cheery holiday decorations. When decorations were ordered long ago and even when they were later installed, no one knew whom, if anyone, might venture out to enjoy them. Optimism and hope won again…

Hind Sight is Actually Now 2020, and none too soon. Dave Williams, owner of Williams Stationery, says 2021 calendars and almanacs are hot ticket items: “They are selling like there’s no tomorrow! We’ve already sold out our entire stock of almanacs.” Some folks, reluctant to hope the New Year will be better than the last, insist, “I’m not buying a 2021 planner until I see a trailer” and “I worry that 2021 may mean 2020-won.” Keen community observer Tom O’Toole notes, “Comparing 2020 to a luxury cruise ship, there are no longer passengers aboard. Everyone has already jumped ship and are waiting to be rescued by the New Year…”

The Tradition of NORAD tracking Santa Claus on Christmas Eve started with a wrong number. From the agency’s website: “NORAD has been tracking Santa since 1955 when a young child accidentally dialed the unlisted phone number of the Continental Air Defense Command (CONAD) Operations Center in Colorado Springs, believing she was calling Santa Claus after seeing a promotion in a local newspaper.” The Colonel on duty that night assured the child that Santa was safely en route from the North Pole. Last week, 15 million people from 200 countries tracked Santa’s progress via NORAD’s website and social media (http://www.NoradSanta.org). NORAD volunteers also fielded more than 130,000 telephone calls from children around the world…

A child mis-dialed the number listed on this Sears advertisement 65 years ago, and the tradition of NORAD tracking Santa Claus on Christmas Eve began.
Submitted to The Union

The Pandemic Has a Silver Lining for Habitat for Humanity of NevCo. H4H usually builds one or two homes at a time, but last month the nonprofit started building three homes at once. The goal was to allow space for volunteer work crews to socially distance, but there are additional benefits. “It’s a more efficient use of labor and materials,” says H4H Development Director Jim Phelps, “and the end result will be more quickly getting people into the homes they’ve helped build.” Adds H4H board member and construction liaison Andy Kramer, “We are fortunate in Nevada County to have buildable lots, approved house plans, and an experienced workforce able to tackle multiple construction projects at the same time…”

Keith and Shirley Porter are proud of their daughter Chris whose lilting voice is among those in a performance at http://www.TheLightOfHopeReturning.com through Jan. 6. “It’s a virtual concert, sung by ‘Women Sing,’ a choir in which our daughter sings,” explains Pleased Papa Keith. “It’s augmented with a second women’s choir in Vancouver and with some incredible visual animation artistry added.” The music was composed and arranged by noted composer Shawn Kirchner…

A Friend Trying to Lose a dozen COVID-inspired pounds noted that she was now within three or four pounds of her goal weight. Another friend congratulated her with the observation, “That’s within the margin of error between weighing yourself in the evening or the morning…”

As the Conversation progressed, we googled diet fads including the “Chew Until Liquefied” plan, which requires masticating 722 times before swallowing. Other past wacky diet ideas embraced a deliberate tapeworm infestation, ingesting tasteless but non-fattening cotton balls to satiate appetites, wearing blue-tinted glasses because the color suppresses appetites, and shunning swamps. Seems at the turn of the century, scientists noted many overweight people lived near swamps; hence, the swamp-avoidance diet…

“An Optimist Stays Up until midnight to see the New Year in. A pessimist stays up to make sure the old year leaves.” – William E. Vaughn (1915-1977), American columnist and author…

Staying or leaving, coming or going, please send your musings to LorraineJewettWrites@gmail.com.



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