Descanso Gardens Hosts a Celebration of Water

Descanso Water Speakers

Foothill Municipal Water District is co-sponsoring “Wet and Wonderful: Celebrating Our Precious Water,” an event featuring talks from water experts, a mulch giveaway and a rain barrel sale between 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 23, at Descanso Gardens.
Speakers and performances include:
• Lisa Novick, of the Theodore Payne Foundation, at 9:15 a.m. at the Center Circle. The LCF resident will lead a Native Plant Garden walk and talk, offering insight about plants residents can use in their own yards to attract pollinators, birds and other wildlife.
• Dallas Raines, KABC-7 meteorologist, will speak from 10-10:30 a.m. at Van De Kamp Hall.
• Cindy Berglund, Rain Barrels International, will discuss rain barrels between 10:30-11 a.m. at Van De Kamp Hall. She will share barrel basics and explain how to apply for rebates.
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Final Comments Due on Devil’s Gate ‘Big Dig’ Challenge

The deadline is today, Sept. 7, to submit comments regarding the recirculated portion of L.A. County’s Devil’s Gate Sediment Removal and Management Project plan. Still, opponents hope residents continue to contact officials with concerns about the project, which seeks to remove 2.4 million cubic yards of sediment from the reservoir.
The Arroyo Seco Foundation and the Pasadena Audubon Society filed a petition in court in 2014 challenging the Final Environmental Impact Report regarding what they call “The Big Dig.”
This April, L.A. Superior Court Judge James Chalfant temporarily halted the project and ruled that the Department of Public Works needed to modify its EIR before it could move forward with its plan, which is aimed at maintaining adequate downstream flood protection.
The judge asked the Flood Control District to provide evidence to support a 1-to-1 mitigation ratio in regard to biological resource impacts and that it find ways to reduce cumulative impacts.
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La Tuna Fire Spurs Community to Action

Photo courtesy Rora Melendy
At about 11 p.m. Friday night, the growing La Tuna Fire appeared to be just behind the hills near Rora Melendy’s home.

Rora Melendy was at Los Gringos Locos on Friday afternoon when she looked up and wondered, “Is that smoke?” A quick check of the “LCF Community Watch” Facebook page confirmed it — a brush fire was burning in the Tujunga area. The La Tuna Fire had begun.
About 1,000 firefighters from agencies across Southern California battled the blaze over a steamy Labor Day weekend as it scorched more than 7,000 acres; temporarily closed a significant stretch of the 210 Freeway, jamming Friday traffic; destroyed five homes and led to 10 injuries. In La Cañada Flintridge, Sunday’s final Music in the Park concert was canceled, as was the La Cañada High School home football game. An investigation into the fire’s cause is underway, authorities said.
In LCF, the community watched anxiously, remembering the Station Fire that began just a few miles north of the city in 2009. For more than 50 days, that fire burned a county record 161,189 acres and took the lives of two firefighters. It also destroyed 215 structures and accounted for more than $95 million in damage, all told.
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LCF Amateur Golf Star Takes Aim at International Glory

Photo courtesy UC Berkeley men’s golf
La Cañada High School graduate Collin Morikawa was selected to represent the United States at the Walker Cup, the most prestigious amateur event in golf, this weekend at Los Angeles Country Club.

Brent Kuszyk said he stopped Collin Morikawa when he spotted him at Brookside Golf Course this summer because he wanted to ask one of the world’s top amateur golfers for a tip or two that might benefit his own golf-obsessed son, Nolan.
Morikawa was in the midst of preparing for the U.S. Amateur Championship, but he gave Kuszyk a half hour, happy to share insight he’d gleaned about golfing life since he picked up a golf club for the first time as a 2-year-old, barely able to walk.
“What a great opportunity for a golf dad, to hear from someone who’s been in it,” said Kuszyk, who sits on La Cañada Unified School District’s Governing Board. “I kept saying, ‘I don’t want to keep you from practicing,’ but he just stood there, answering my questions. He’s just a really nice representation of La Cañada.”
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Superintendent Sinnette’s Contract Extended 4 Years

Likening her to basketball great Michael Jordan, the five members of the La Cañada Unified School District Governing Board heaped praise on Superintendent Wendy Sinnette at Tuesday’s meeting before voting unanimously to extend her contract for four years.
She is to earn $255,800 annually through July 31, 2021.
Previously, the board agreed to increase Sinnette’s minimum annual base salary from $185,000 to $225,800 for the 2015-16 school year, $240,800 in 2016-17 and $250,800 for 2017-18. Her base salary when she took over for retiring Superintendent Jim Stratton in 2011 was $161,000.
“Wendy continues to deliver an exceptional level of leadership,” board member Ellen Multari said. “There isn’t a day that goes by when your core values don’t shine through — your mantra, ‘What’s best for the students?’ is just emblazoned in my mind.”
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Perrantes Leads St. Francis to Victory in Season Opener

Photo courtesy Eric Danielson St. Francis junior quarterback Darius Perrantes threw for 322 yards, six touchdowns and an interception in his debut last week, leading St. Francis to a 48-21 win over Mira Costa of Manhattan Beach.

By Charlie Foy

During the second half, the St. Francis High School student section loudly sang “Sweet Caroline,” A fitting song because Golden Knights football never seemed so good as the varsity team cruised to a 48-21 victory over visiting Mira Costa of Manhattan Beach last week.
In the first half, new quarterback Darius Perrantes, a junior transfer from Encino Crespi, initially started off slow but everything started to click after his first touchdown. Near the end of the first quarter, senior Greg Dulcich broke away from the Mira Costa corner, and Perrantes completed a 38-yard touchdown pass, and there was no looking back for the St. Francis offense.
The Mustangs (0-1 overall) quickly responded with a touchdown pass of their own, and it seemed as if both teams were evenly matched.
On the ensuing drive, Perrantes completed another touchdown pass to Dulcich and later connected with Isaac Cordova for a 64-yard touchdown.
The Mustangs didn’t give up and kept the game within reach after a touchdown midway through the second quarter, cutting St. Francis lead to 21-14 at the half. Continue reading “Perrantes Leads St. Francis to Victory in Season Opener”