Community
October 23, 2019
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Bark After Dark... bringing back the memories Graton Rancheria gives grant to SSU Rancheria Learning Center Broadway under the stars Honoring the women of Cotati A functioning sawmill near Sebastopol Learn to write obituaries Community Events Calendar October 18, 2019 through October 31, 2019 Dance for good! Would you like to shop for the Cottage families? Volunteer's Corner Farm animal rescue in Cotati provides much needed services Peace and Justice Center Awards & Fundraiser Maher will provide free care during Nov. Community Events Calendar October 11, 2019 through October 24, 2019 It’s the time of year for fall curbside cleanup Dancing in the bubbles Volunteer's Corner Bark after Dark Archive crawl/open house Kinsey Sicks in Cotati Abbleskiever breakfast at Penngrove The free Sonoma County Bookmobile Hub Cyclery celebrates another year Aliotti graduates from Lackland Community Events Calendar October 5, 2018 through October 18, 2018 Community Events Calendar January 11, 2019 through January 24, 2019 Community Events Calendar October 4, 2019 through October 17, 2019 Let’s talk Turkey Recipes sought for B’nai Israel cookbook Help keep the leaves and grass out of storm drains Community Events Calendar September 28, 2018 through October 11, 2018 Community Events Calendar December 28, 2018 through January 10, 2019 Welcome to a new year of reading and writing Back to school supply challenge Rivers of Life Community Events Calendar August 31, 2018 through September 13, 2018 Community Events Calendar October 19, 2018 through November 1, 2018 Local author donates to Wildfire Relief Charities LIME Foundation partners with local organization Community Events Calendar July 26, 2019 through August 8, 2019 Volunteer's Corner Gore in tune Community Events Calendar October 12 through October 25 Over 100 volunteers wrapping toys Community Events Calendar January 4, 2019 through January 17, 2019 Sonoma County Library Photography Exhibit 2019 Volunteer's Corner Free conservation toolkits at your local library JavAmore, Caprara’s Pizzeria hold fundraiser Save Rancho Adobe FPD Sonoma Clean Power partners with Uber Homeless veterans receive greatest gift Volunteer's Corner Back to school bag of tricks Community Events Calendar August 9, 2019 through August 22, 2019 Luther Burbank Memorial Foundation is awarded three new grants RP Expressway improvements Remo is ready for dessert SSU’s Sakaki names Griffin-Desta as new Chief of Staff Haute Flash takes the stage 2019 Graduation in full swing Volunteer briefs Photography show at library Earle Baum Center celebrates 20 years Community Events Calendar August 10, 2018 through August 23, 2018 Get your hula on for the Penngrove luau A day at Thomas Page Academy Elves clowning around Burton Recreation Center gets a new look How past superintendents impacted CRPUSD Successful approach to fireworks in RP SCP and Country Summer raise donations for local food bank She serves Cotati well Community Events Calendar September 14, 2018 through September 27, 2018 Pastis visits the Ranch A Cotati home has the Christmas spirit 2nd Annual Sweethearts Fairytale Dance Educator Dolkas retires Free backpacks and school supplies for kids Support program delivers items to firefighters Community Events Calendar September 27, 2019 through October 10, 2019 Bands and DJs playing great music in Cotati Photo exhibit by Penngrove artist sheds light on disability community Free Advance Care Planning workshop Jan. 15 SSU Outreach and events coordinator changes Cycle Without Limits in action again at SSU Library summer reading program Pastor George Russell 30 years with the Assembly of God Church Japanese students experience American culture, English language Hawaiian luau Penngrove style Military basic training graduates Cotati’s early morning breakfast Cotatians turned out in droves Sat. to celebrate Oliver’s Market 30th anniversary party Bark After Dark: Dinner and auction to help save animals Enrollment event at SC airport Would you make a great foster parent? RCHS ‘sold out’ crab feed Vacation Bible School in Penngrove Agreement reached with homeless advocates Kindergarteners get a first taste of school The People’s Choice award winner Sonoma State presents the first-ever production of ‘Origin Story’ Community Events Calendar August 24, 2018 through September 6, 2018 Community Events Calendar October 26 through November 8 Community Events Calendar November 9 2018 through November 22 2018 Rohnert Park students to learn bike safety Genealogy library hosts open house in Santa Rosa NorCal Honor Band accepts Analy High School musicians Volunteer's Corner Sonoma Clean Power seeks participants Scholarships help foster youth SoCo. Bicycle Coalition needs board members Community Events Calendar August 23, 2019 through September 5, 2019 Sonoma County schools hold International walk and roll to school day CPI North Bay fire recovery Sonoma Raceway hosts food drive American Sign Language and police departments Volunteer's Corner Community Events Calendar January 18, 2019 through January 31, 2019 Community Events Calendar February 1, 2019 through February 14, 2019 School’s out – time for camp! Credo High Graduates RP Club serves breakfast and lunch Miss Central California performs at Friday Night Market Petaluma native serves at naval communication center Alumnus Teixeira educational fund with endowment Pumpkin night is a magical time Photography Show Newest report finds new growth on rare Cotati albino Chimera Tree The work behind “The Art of Resistance” SRS has affordable family concert, Jan. 27, 3 p.m. RP Health Center ensures all children in school district receive dental care Volunteer's Corner Volunteer’s Corner Community Events Calendar May 10, 2019 through May 23, 2019 FREE Movies In The Park CRPUSD needs hands-on leader Community Events Calendar July 12, 2019 through July 25, 2019 Community Events Calendar July 19, 2019 through August 1, 2019 Community Events Calendar August 2, 2019 through August 15, 2019 Volunteer briefs Meaningful Sayings Community Events Calendar September 21, 2018 through October 4, 2018 A Veteran remembers Veterans SSU to buy 90-unit Petaluma complex for workforce housing Decker waves the baton at a concert Richard Crane fourth graders harness the wind Collaborating Together for Peace May the 4th be with you at La Plaza Park Community Events Calendar June 7, 2019 through June 20, 2019 Granny units in local area Nonn talks with Waldo and Tech neighbors Walking in the Cotati Kids’ Day parade Volunteer briefs Quite a dance performance at the Accordian Festival Analy fall music festival It takes a village to honor its past Veterans story Mark Weston Volunteer's Corner Young accepts ‘prez’ of the RP Historical Society Community Events Calendar December 21, 2018 through January 3, 2019 Local nonprofit to host Santa Rosa fundraiser for homeless veterans Hansel receives honorary doctorate A lesson from Wafflemat Tom with his bucket Farmers’ markets kick off Volunteer's Corner Borrow more materials from more libraries Charitable program linking foster families and churches A new strategy for the Cotati Chamber of Commerce The Native Daughters host CA Admission Day Veterans Day 2018, Rick Norman Community Events Calendar November 23, 2018 through December 13, 2018 A lighter, brighter Cotati Vandalism at Gold Ridge Community Center Community Events Calendar December 14, 2018 through December 27, 2018 Community Events Calendar January 25, 2019 through February 7, 2019 Community Events Calendar March 29, 2019 through April 11, 2019 Volunteer's Corner Enter the Penngrove Parade Community Events Calendar June 14, 2019 through June 27, 2019 Community Events Calendar June 28, 2019 through July 11, 2019 Deliver food to seniors House managers and ushers needed Community Events Calendar August 16, 2019 through August 29, 2019 Be prepared for a medical emergency Discrimination and bullying in our schools Volunteer City of Cotati offers Thanksgiving week fun for kids Saving on energy and giving youth jobs DUI/Driver’s License Checkpoint Volunteer's Corner Community Events Calendar February 8, 2019 through February 21, 2019 Cotati chicken BBQ returns Race volunteers and DJ needed Annual senior art show The Sonoma-Marin fair is giving away $35k in awards & scholarships Volunteer's Corner Library offers free summer lunches to youth NPR author Corrigan to speak at RP-Cotati Library Volunteer briefs Rancho: some things old, some things new Volunteer's Corner RP Founders’ Day Oct. 6 30 years for Danny's vacuum shop Volunteer’s corner Home Instead partners with local businesses Large affordable housing project breaks ground in Rohnert Park Is your Carbon Monoxide detector chirping? Volunteer’s Corner RP celebrates “I Heart RP” Feb. 10 Volunteer's Corner I can do it! Exposición anual de arte para personas mayores RP-Cotati Library to feature award-winning performance artist Thirteen reasons to fold American flag Fireworks update Kids day in Cotati Friday, 7/19/19 Hometown Headliners Petaluma native serves as member of U.S. Navy Community Events Calendar September 6, 2019 through September 19, 2019 Exhibit commemorating LGBTQ+ history on display at SSU Backpack drive event this Sunday Who you going to call? Adapting to the weather changes SC Public Library Foundation needs directors Athena sits in ‘artsy’ Cotati Community Events Calendar December 7, 2018 through December 20, 2018 Cotati hosts award dinner Volunteer's Corner Free care planning workshop Credo’s Dolcini power rowing to Portland Free, fun, family activities, Sat. Junior League presenting Ride-a-Rig Armed Forces News Strickland becomes president of Rotary Club So. Co. 2019 homeless count shows reduction Rise in young people experiencing homelessness Boys & Girls Clubs is now Boys & Girls Clubs of Sonoma-Marin Volunteer briefs Writing is powerful 2019 Farm Bureau Foundation of SoCo Grant Program accepting applications SC nonprofit arts and culture generates $80.4 M Community Events Calendar November 2, 2018 through November 15, 2018 Multiple Commission, Committee and Board appointive terms expire Dec. 2018 – We have seats to fill! Community Events Calendar November 30 through December 20 Volunteer's Corner Coffee with Cotati cops ‘Just Between Friends’ mega kids’ event Creative Sonoma supports artists impacted by fires Everything bunny in Rohnert Park Cotati Rotary hosts first Humanitarian award Walk the labyrinth in D park Two teachers receive the Lou Colby award RP’s 36th annual fishing derby Looking for SoCo artists An antediluvian house on the hill Newspaper spring-ups through the years Empire graduates Devil Pups, A 10-day Leadership Camp for teens Child passenger safety week Community Events Calendar September 7, 2018 through September 20, 2018 SAY launches One Cold Night Devil Pups set a new goal Celebrate the holiday season responsibly  Tips for a Grinchless holiday season Church of the Oaks crab feed Feb. 8-9 Miss SC Scholarship competition Local winner at art show Bailey So. Co. Woman of the Year Credo High School to speak at WE conference So. Co. Community Dev. Commission seeks equity in housing Tech High athletic awards ceremony Eureka! Students strike gold! Special Olympic Torch run going through Cotati Community Events Calendar July 5, 2019 through July 18, 2019 Sonoma Raceway to host high speed blood drive Neary starts new business Kenneth Bradley, a local photographer showcasing Community Events Calendar August 17, 2018 through August 30, 2018 Staying safe on our local trails North Bay Construction Corps receives statewide recognition Don’t be a victim of a charity scam Be a resource for fire survivors Poetry Out Loud Sonoma County contest Community Events Calendar March 1, 2019 through March 14, 2019 Rancho Cotate Varsity Girls Basketball receives recognition The “Disney” concert in the TAG building Community Events Calendar April 19, 2019 through May 2, 2019 La Comisión de Desarrollo Comunitario del Condado de Sonoma An invitation to the Peace garden dedication Rancho Cotate High School students for May Free seminars for disabled veterans and surviving spouses claim benefits Library to eliminate fines for 80,000 patrons The National Heirloom Exposition celebrates a world of flavor! Community Events Calendar September 20, 2019 through October 3, 2019 Service dog dreams come true for heart attack survivor 20/30 club & Kohl’s outfit students Annual Sonoma County hunger index: 1/3 of residents went hungry in 2017 Volunteer's Corner Fun-filled Cotati stroll Celebrate Black History Month Heavy rain takes toll on drivers Transgender Day of Visibility Community Events Calendar April 5, 2019 through April 18, 2019 Volunteer's Corner SOMO Village vibrant with painted faces and bling Community Events Calendar May 24, 2019 through June 6, 2019 Monte Vista Spring Fling Community Events Calendar June 21, 2019 through July 4, 2019 Civil War days returns to Duncans Mills Volunteer's Corner Free Lacrosse clinics at M Park Garbage rate increase may keep compostable materials in county Sonoma County reads ‘Kindred’ Be a resource for fire survivors STEM at SSU Community Events Calendar February 15, 2019 through February 28, 2019 Japanese Internment Remembrance Day Credo students demand strong environmental action Coffee with a Cop  Free family bicycling workshop Learn about water-wise gardening this weekend Volunteer's Corner Inaugural construction trades training class prepares to graduate Volunteer's Corner Free workshop for adults 60+ Big bounce cancelled Volunteer's Corner Community Events Calendar August 3, 2018 through August 16, 2018 A warm day with dancing and good food Community Events Calendar November 16, through December 6, Volunteers needed to ring a bell Volunteer's Corner Volunteer's Corner  Senior art show registration for artists age 60+ One Planet Youth Summit and Credo High School United Way ensuring community gets fair share in 2020 census RCRPC hosted Annual Community Award night Rancho Cotate HS students for the month of April- Perseverance Cotati Chamber hosts music festival Community Events Calendar May 31, 2019 through June 13, 2019 A new feature at the Cotati Farmers’ Market Rohnert Park teacher wins summer Fellowship Community Events Calendar August 30, 2019 through September 12, 2019 Bringing Mediterranean culture to the community Mobility is freedom…with a Purple Heart truck run Train as a coach to help older adults prevent falls Rotary District 5130 provides multiple fire relief grants A New Coalition: Forming alliances for barn owls Grand opening at Acme Burger Penngrove buries time capsule Volunteer's Corner Libraries = strong communities Community Events Calendar May 3, 2019 through May 16, 2019 Tech elects new student body for year 2019-20 Volunteer's Corner Green Music Center presents its annual fundraising event Connect to nature Seniors are targets for telescammers CTE Foundation invests in local schools Our invisible but critical water source Future leaders of the community Rohnert Park Democratic Club Free job fair matches local employers and job seekers TAG building ribbon-cutting/dedication ceremony Creating a teacher recruitment and retention plan K/1 students to present a jobs and business expo An invitation to attend “Avenue of Flags” Educator Friedland retires after 35 years 6th annual luau fundraiser Zero Waste Sonoma and Bye-Bye mattress team up SSU named one of the nation’s “Most promising places to work” Community Events Calendar February 22, 2019 through March 7, 2019 Mayor Belforte reads at Monte Vista A new student center in RP Nor Cal Aging, Disability and Advocacy Expo Transgender march and rally RP Easter egg hunt Volunteer's Corner Color is fun Jones receives proclamation Flags are a beautiful sight Stockham of Cotati named Global Scholar Greater Farallones Marine sanctuary seeks Maritime Advisor New Entrepreneur in residence at Sonoma State University Sonoma County STEAM Showcase Transgender day in the square Apply to represent So County’s older adults Community Events Calendar March 22, 2019 through April 4, 2019 McLea’s receives AAA banner SonomaFi coming to local libraries Letter carriers stamp out hunger Woolery loves a clean environment A library luncheon becomes a birthday party Mayors challenge Cougars Sonoma and Mendocino selected for regional electric vehicle charging No fault of their own Cross and Crown celebrates 50th Anniversary Monthly CalFresh benefits to arrive March 1 Community Events Calendar March 15, 2019 through March 28, 2019 SSU to screen ‘Big Sonia’ to honor Holocaust and Genocide survivors Volunteer's Corner Showing off their talents Creative Grants for Summer Arts Youth Programs RP seeking applicants for leadership program Volunteer's Corner Thousands of PG&E customers could benefit from monthly energy discount Community Events Calendar September 13, 2019 through September 26, 2019 Explore foster parenting talk Feb. 25 Cross and Crown Church reaches the big 50 Looking through the glass at Arch’s for 55 years Senior center prom Community Events Calendar April 12, 2019 through April 25, 2019 Paparazzi day... Let the egg hunt begin… Rotary clubs of Rancho Cotati and Rohnert Park are hosting the dedication of a Peace Park Today’s children, Tomorrow’s leaders Sonoma County Mayors’ award breakfast Crew does a fine job It’s “American” History Volunteer's Corner SSU to sign landmark commitment to sustainability Volunteer's Corner SSU takes top honors at United Nations conference Cal Ripken celebrates opening day Making Rohnert Park age friendly Learn more about CASA’s impact Clover Sonoma supports free concerts for youth Residents give high marks to Cotati living Event volunteers needed Free LGBT awareness training for caregivers RCHS Guard and drumline competition Sgt. Thompson named So. Co. bike commuter of the year Happiest sprint on the planet Librarian Kleban retires CASA Volunteers SSU Library presents ‘Alchemia’ exhibit Community Events Calendar March 8, 2019 through March 21, 2019 Art students big on art Space for reflection Community Events Calendar April 26, 2019 through May 9, 2019 Tech. upgrade for Cotati sewers/water Duckett all set to install tile Choosing to man their table Volunteer's Corner Rancho Cotati Rotary Club visited Thomas Page Academy Artists showing off their works Join us on Easter Sunday Caregivers offered free awareness training Sweetman explains expo The Rohnert Park Sister City Committee is in full swing Parkour Speed competition Volunteer's Corner Ranger retires after 36 years Community Events Calendar May 17, 2019 through May 30, 2019

Rancho’s Top Twenty Dinner: a fifty-one-year tradition

  • RCHS - Top 20 Seniors, Lauren Allison, Guadalupe Alvarez Tovar, Sofia Franzini, Zachary Hendry, Alyiha Hernandez, Kaia Holdenreid, Riley Jones, Rita Khoury, Rylie Klingaman, Anjali Lad, Codey Nahmens, Melissa Pamatmat, Jazmin Perez Gonzalez, Carlos Perez Pacheco, Jessica Phillips, Ty Riveras, Dianna Santorineos, Mason Stalder, Sury Vega and Allison Wild. Photo by Jane Peleti

By: Lanny Lowery
May 10, 2019

One of the long-standing traditions that parallels the history of Rancho Cotate High School, the Academic Achievement Awards, lately better known as the Top Twenty Dinner, took place May 2.  The Jesus Christ Church of Latter Day Saints generously donated its hall for the venue that honored twenty Rancho students who have earned the top grade point averages.

This year’s students include Jessica Phillips, Dianna Santorineos, Rylie Klingaman, Lauren Allison, Allison Wild, Melissa Pamatmat, Sofia Franzini, Anjali Lad, Carlos Perez Pacheco, Sury Vega Jaimes, Mason Stalder, Riley Jones, Rita Khoury, Zachary Hendry, Guadalupe Alvarez Tovar, Kaia Holdenried, Cody Nahmens, Jazmin Perez Gonzales, Ty Riveras and Alyiha Hernandez.

The awards dinner really goes back sixty years when it first began with the Petaluma School District.  In 1968, Mary Golis, Camilla Gray, James Panttja and Barry Santero were honored as the “Top Four” at the new Rancho Cotate High School.  The Top Four became the Top Ten in 1975 and the Top Twenty in 1979.  Nearly nine hundred students have been celebrated and awarded scholarships at Rancho since the dinner began fifty-one years ago.

And traditions have evolved within the dinner itself.  The keynote speaker has been most often a Rancho graduate such as sportswriter Dan Brown, 911 prosecutor David Feniger, filmmaker Josh Mellars, local dentist Jamie Sahouria and educator Stacie Roberts as well as Assemblyman Charles Cochran.  Monica Ohkubo, Class of 1998, was this year’s keynote speaker.

Dr. Ohkubo has worked at Santa Rosa Junior College since 2007.  Along with being the Head Athletic Trainer, she is the Sports Medicine and Athletic Training program director and also an instructor in the Kinesiology, Athletics and Dance department.  She earned a bachelor’s degree in Kinesiology at Sonoma State University, a master’s degree from San Jose State University and a doctoral degree at Rocky Mountain University of Health Professions.

A volunteer for the Sonoma County Sol Women’s semi-professional soccer team, Dr. Ohkubo was the athletic trainer for the Santa Rosa Scorchers Women’s professional football team for over five years.  She has also worked with USA youth volleyball and wrestling, professional rodeo, taekwondo, and other types of athletes.  And she volunteers in her community, advocating and supporting the movement to hire athletic trainers in all area high schools.

With modesty, Dr. Ohkubo regards being chosen keynote speaker with highest esteem.  “I am extremely honored to be speaking to the Top Twenty Rancho Cotate graduates.  It is very humbling and exciting to be asked to come back to my alma mater and share my experience.  No matter what path each of these motivated and accomplished students take, I can’t wait to see how 2019’s Top Twenty go out and change the world.”

Prior to the program, the Rancho Cotate Concert Choir, led by Rancho Music Director Tim Decker, performed.  Then dinner, catered by Pasta King, consisting of spaghetti, garlic bread and salad, was served by prospective Top Twenty students from the Class of 2020, another Rancho tradition.

A traditional program followed the dinner.  Principal Louis Ganzler spoke about the students’ accomplishments.  Then Dr. Ohkubo delivered the keynote address recalling her Rancho experience and her collegiate education.  As she discussed her career as a trainer and college instructor, she encouraged the students to each find his or her own path, not feel locked in to someone else’s standard for success.  She expressed high hopes for the Top Twenty students.

The highlight of the evening followed: the presentation of the Top Twenty students.  Teachers, administrators and community members each read a student-written life story, some humorous and some serious, but all meaningful.

The goal of the Top Twenty committee is to present each student with a $250 scholarship.  Over the years, many community members, school board members, former students and businesses have donated:  Art Hollingsworth Insurance Services, Susan Adams, Aquatic Pools, Blake’s Auto Body, Blue Apple Dental,  Leffler and Janice Brown, Anna Bachman Scholarship Fund, Class of 2006, Sanford Bessick, Codding Foundation, the Cunningham Family, Craig Davis, D.D.S., Downtown Auto Body, the Driving Connection, Matthew Fontana, Ed Gilardi, James T. Henley, D.D.S., Kid Cuts, Ricky and Lori Krist, Learning to Learn, Liberty Doors, John D. Mann, D.D.S., Christopher Morita, James and Mary Panttaja, the Pulley Family, R.J. Mechanical, Rogers Management, Carolyn Rich, Rogers Plaza, Rohnert Park Cotati Educators Association, RP/Chapter of Realtors—-Roger Farah, Jamie Sahouria, D.D.S, Meagan Pulley Wilson, Wright Contracting, Donna Yock, D.M.D & Eddie Kuo D.D.S. 

If other people would like to donate, they can send checks to Rancho Cotate High School, 5450 Snyder Lane, Rohnert Park, CA 94928.  Checks should be made out to RCHS/PTSA c/o Top 20.  This great tradition of more than a half of a century belongs not just to Rancho Cotate High School but also to the communities of Rohnert Park, Cotati and Penngrove.