Cinnabar Theater is setting the stage for an exciting future as it celebrates over 40 years of presenting a wide variety of plays, musicals, operas and concerts for arts lovers in southern Sonoma County.
Cinnabar’s board of trustees has announced the appointment of a full time executive director to lead the Sonoma County non-profit into a new era delivering exceptional professional performing arts and arts education programs.
Diane Dragone joins Cinnabar Theater to work hand in hand with long serving Artistic Director Elly Lichenstein. Diane brings to Cinnabar a wealth of knowledge and experience in business, along with an undying passion for the arts.
As a long time Bay Area arts entrepreneur and presenter she is an avid advocate for the Arts and the vital role they play in our culture. Together she and Elly will continue Cinnabar’s commitment to provide sophisticated shows for local audiences and irresistible arts education for young people in the community.
“I immediately recognized Diane could be for us,” said Elly. “Her quick mind and her passion for the arts and arts education complement her very open demeanor and collaborative spirit. She’s fearless and joyful at the same time. And she recognizes the intense value of our work, and what it will take to support it. A hard worker!”
Diane has a Masters in Nonprofit Administration from the University of San Francisco and for many years she operated a chain of retail music stores in San Francisco where Diane produced weekly concerts by local artists that were free to the public. Most recently she has consulted with numerous Bay Area not-for-profits including Peninsula Women’s Chorus, Living Jazz, Oakland Jazz Choir, and Oakland Interfaith Gospel Choir where she managed development efforts and developed advertising, public relations, social media campaigns and formed strategic alliances.
“I am excited and thrilled to be become part of the Cinnabar family”, says Diane. “I look forward to working with Elly, the Artistic Director; our professional staff; co-founder Jan Klebe; and all the volunteers. I love the opportunity to give more people the unique and magical theater experience that only comes in such an intimate setting. In addition, I am eager to connect with the Cinnabar audience along with members of the Petaluma community to raise the awareness of our singular ‘little theater on the hill’.”
Audiences have flocked to performances in this intimate setting since 1972, when Marvin and Jan Klebe established an arts center for the community. Along with their four sons, they transformed a charming 1908 schoolhouse into a jewel-box theater that has hosted successful shows for four decades.
“I am delighted to be able to turn the day to day operating responsibilities over to Diane, confident that she will be able to build on the strong footing that the theater now enjoys,” said Cinnabar board member and interim Executive Director Stephen Hamilton. “Diane joins the theater at a critical time in its life as it looks forward to celebrating its fiftieth season and beyond, bringing professional theater and first rate arts education programs to the entire community.”
Cinnabar Theater is located at 3333 Petaluma Boulevard North, just off Highway 101 and only minutes from historic downtown Petaluma. There’s ample parking up on the hill… and a friendly herd of goats grazing in the neighboring field. For more information on Cinnabar Theater, to purchase tickets or subscriptions for upcoming shows, or to make a tax-deductible donation in support of Cinnabar’s mission, call (707) 763-8920 or visit www.cinnabartheater.org.
Heritage Homes of Petaluma presented 11 Preservation Awards recognizing local home and business owners who restored historic structures, as well as to a contractor who restores older buildings and has played a role in the Heritage Homes organization. The event was held at the Petaluma Woman’s Club on Sept. 20.
Awards of Great Merit were conferred upon Jim and Annette McElroy for the rehabilitation of a Victorian-style rental at 317 Seventh Street; Caroline Hall and Brad Villeggiante for their work on their 1920s home at 416 English Street; Martin and Julia Forage for extensive repairs on their 1920s residence at 910 D Street; and Terry Kosewic and Ko-Ri Inc. for reconstruction of 100-year-old business property at 428-430 Petaluma Blvd. North that had been slated for demolition.
Award for Talent in the Building Industry was given to Terry Kosewic of Kozy Homes Construction, who specializes in restoring structures built before 1920 and has lent his knowledge and workmanship to fix up many Petaluma structures.
Individual Recognition for Leadership and Service for involvement in Heritage Homes was earned by the same Terry Kosewic, a past president and board member for 33 years years, including work on Heritage Homes’ Biennial and Holiday Parlour Tours and many other important tasks that contributed to the success of the organization.
Awards of Merit were granted to Mike Deverell and Susan Muscatell, owners and residents at 100 Sixth Street, for a new garage compatible with surrounding historic buildings; and Terry and Alena Kosewic, owners of rental property on 400 and 412 Bodega Avenue, for restoring a Victorian farmhouse and its numerous outbuildings.
Honorable Mention Awards went to Harry Clifford III and Isabel Beardsworth for their restoration of another Victorian rental at 29 Fifth Street; Daniel and Madeline Backman for their work on their 1895 residence at 609 B Street; and Angela DeCarli for the transformation of a circa 1920s medical office at 127 Fourth Street into the Pacific Union Real Estate office.
Petaluma Heritage home appreciators — mark your calendars for the 2015 Holiday Parlour Tour, Sunday December 6th.
The annual Holiday Parlour Tour will be held from 5 to 8 p.m., tickets will be $15 advance, or $20 night of the tour. Tickets will be available at the Petaluma Museum, 20 Fourth Street, and Rex Hardware, 313 B Street. Anyone who would like to volunteer either their home or to serve as a docent, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
I'm taking my first flight out of Sonoma County Airport in the new year and I'm happy to hear that more flight options are in the works for North Bay residents looking to avoid the added hour to two hour journey down to SFO or Oakland.
Direct flights from Orange County into Sonoma Wine Country will begin on March 16, 2016, according to Alaska Airlines.
Flights from Orange County will depart at 12:15 p.m. and arrive in Santa Rosa at 1:46 p.m. Flights from Santa Rosa will depart at 12:40 p.m. and arrive in Orange County at 2:11 p.m. John Wayne Airport will be the second airport that offers non-stop flights from the Los Angeles basin. The other is LAX. Other destinations are Portland, San Diego, and Seattle.
John Wayne Airport will be convenient for travelers from beach cities of Huntington Beach, Newport Beach and Laguna Beach, as well as the inland areas of Irvine, Orange, and Anaheim.
The new route will be served by Horizon Air’s 76-seat Q400 aircraft, which it currently uses on all flights to Sonoma County.
Charles M. Schulz Sonoma County Airport (STS)
Oh, by gosh, by golly! It’s time for mistletoe and holly!
Ever since I had my first home in England, many moons ago, I've enjoyed a winter's forage around the evergreen growth in the area, gathering holly and ivy and seasonal greenery for natural decoration.
Mistletoe, though, I left to the mysterious professionals who magically mustered it up by the barrowful for winter sales in small, beribboned swags.
Growing up in the UK, we always had a sprig of mistletoe suspended from a central doorframe or light fixture. A quick kiss, be it a peck on the cheek in passing or something more romantic (when mutually agreeable) has been a Christmas tradition in the British Isles for centuries.
I never gave much thought as to where mistletoe grows and how it's harvested. The knowledge that lots of charities raise lots of money each year in mistletoe sales around the world was good enough background info for me.
It was during my research for my second book, "Fog Valley Winter" that I discovered, much to my delight, that celebrated Victorian-era American botanist, horticulturist and pioneer in agricultural science, Luther Burbank left behind a particularly fascinating find for me amidst his long-lasting and extensive legacy of more than 800 strains and varieties of flowers, fruits, grasses, grains and other plants.
Luther Burbank was of English decent. I'm sure he was raised (back East) with mistletoe in the family home come Christmas-time.
Not content with the native mistletoe here in California, Burbank introduced European mistletoe (Viscumalbum) into the Sebastopol area around 1900. Seemingly, no one took a lot of notice until a Dr. John Thomas Howell of the California Academy of Sciences first reported its introduction in scientific literature, in 1966 (the year I was born!).
The only other place that European mistletoe is found in North America is in Canada's Victoria, British Columbia.
Here in Sonoma County, European mistletoe spread around a radius of seven and a half miles from its point of introduction. It can be found today, in large, heavy balls high up in 23 different deciduous tree types in Sebastopol, Graton, Santa Rosa, Fulton, Cotati, Forestville and Occidental.
It's most commonly found on silver maple, apple, black locust, red alder and Fremont cottonwood trees.
European mistletoe is more openly branched with narrower leaves in comparison to the native plant, which has denser branching and more oval-shaped leaves.
Scientists believe that European mistletoe spread was restricted to such a small area due to the fact that to the west there is mainly coniferous forest and to the south mostly open grassland with scattered Eucalyptus groves and few potential hosts.
When Sebastopol's apple orchards were in their heyday, apple trees were pruned on a regular basis, keeping mistletoe from becoming as invasive as it is today in abandoned orchards.
Fountain of knowledge in the horticultural world, my friend Susan Villa was the one to ask about Luther Burbank's surprise gift on my doorstep in writing about European immigrant holiday traditions. Though Luther was a bit late introducing the sort of mistletoe Gold Rush era settlers from Europe were used to, late Victorian homesteaders in the area certainly would have recognized it hanging in balls from trees.
Susan knew exactly where to head out in search of an early European mistletoe haul. Take a drive around the Sebastopol area yourself and keep your eyes peeled. It's not hard to find, but it's often extremely high up and requires special tools and some strength to cut.
Here's what the wood on the maple tree branch we found looks like after the mistletoe root has been removed. Beautiful, mystical and amazing.
Many thanks to the intrepid Susan and to Ellen and Martin for being such good sports in our expedition that led into their yard!
I'm planning to have my new book in print in time for fall 2016. In the meantime, if you haven't yet read the first one, last few boxes of limited edition print versions of Fog Valley Crush are still available this holiday season.
Krista Gawronski, passionate co-founder of Oprah-inspired philanthropic group, The Fabulous Women of Sonoma County, has launched into print with her first book — "Soul Purpose, Finding The Courage To Fly".
If running a busy sandwich shop, spearheading a dynamic non-profit, parenting two teenage sons and maintaining a well-earned reputation in positivity personified, Krista shows us what it means to overcome tragedy and adversity, reach for our personal dreams to the betterment of others.
Her long cherished goal of writing and publishing a book of her own does double duty in the sharing of her greatest life lessons to inspire the rest of us to get up of the couch and do something good for someone else.
"Stretch yourself, it will feed your soul," Krista encouraged a huge crowd of supporters at her book launch this fall at Petaluma Valley Athletic Club.
I've come to know and admire Krista from writing about her group's tremendous fundraising efforts for families in need over the past few years. She never ceases to amaze. I know she's not super human and like all of us, has had and occasionally still has her own unique life challenges, but I was thoroughly impressed by her impassioned speech and her willingness to share her truths and her humility with those who couldn't wait to be the first to get their hands on her book.
I read Soul Purpose in one sitting, in a couple of hours. I'm a fast reader. Dedicated to our community, her fellow Fabulous Women and her family, Krista has crafted a moving, yet refreshingly uncomplicated guidebook to getting your soul on.
"Allow gratitude and wisdom to take center stage in your life," she says. "It is then that you can start to take flight".
Krista weaves in several heart wrenching real stories of the families who the Fabulous Women have helped. Readers in Petaluma will be familiar with this author as one of our hometown heroes. Pick up a copy in Copperfield's Bookstore, Petaluma, Mr.Pickles Sandwich Shop on Lakeville or at Velvet Ice in Petaluma's Theatre Square.
For those outside of the area, there are plentiful lessons to learn from this lovely and insightful book, available on Amazon.com.
France or Italy next summer or fall? Humm, let me think? For those of us who love to travel and love to cook, Sonoma-based Ramekins Culinary Center's summer/fall 2016 excursions are particularly delicious!
Cooking with the seasons and perusing brocantes (antiques and weathered treasures) is a way of life in the French countryside. Join Ramekins for a week-long trip of cooking, wine tasting and antiquing in one of the most beautiful, lush parts of the country.
Stay at the exclusive Chateau Dumas, set upon a hill in peaceful, rolling countryside on a 22 acre private estate with a large pool and glorious panoramic views.
Click here for more info or call 707.935.8553
Piemonte is home to many of of Italy’s most prized wines - Barbaresco, Barbera, Nebbiolo and most famous of all, Barolo - and is a leading gastronomic destination.
Ramekins' northern Italy culinary excursion provides cuisine that combines richness of Italian tradition with influences from nearby France. Fine wines, excellent cheeses, truffles, hazelnuts, and succulent meats abound. Piemonte also boasts stunning medieval castles, views of snow-covered Alps, and local hospitality.
Call Ramekins' Event Team For Further Details at 707.933-5325 or email email@example.com