Saturday, October 11, 2014

A Beautiful Day for a Lot of Something

Hooking up with Skywatch Friday

Today is going to be hopping around San Benito County.  These are just a few of the events:

The Red Ribbon 5K is going on right now in Historical Downtown Hollister. Participants are running a 3.1 mile in the shape of an H.  Post-run festivities continue until 12:30 p.m.

The Cole Canyon Farm , a certified organic nursery in Aromas, is holding an Open Greenhouse Sale to the public, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. It's located at 1495 Cole Road. 

The San Juan Bautista Historical Society is holding an open house from 9:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at the Carl M. Luck Memorial Park in San Juan Bautista. The celebration includes a presentation of the Digital San Juan Bautista Project (hundreds of old photos of the City and its residents), used book sale, silent auction, and BBQ, among other activities. This is a free event, open to the public.

The Second Annual San Benito Olive Festival, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m, at Bolado Park in Tres Pinos, about 8 miles south of Hollister on Highway 25. The gourmet celebration features several celebrity chef cooking demonstrations, live bands, restaurant fare, artisanal food sampling, wine and craft beer tasting, and much, much more.  Tickets are still available at the gate.

Friday, October 10, 2014

Drum Reflection

The drummer is part of Mr. O's Jazz Band, a popular ensemble composed of adults and youth. The group plays at many of the local events such as last week's San Benito County Fair and tomorrow's San Benito Olive Festival.

The band is lead by Mr. Joe Ostensen who taught music and band classes in the Hollister middle schools for several decades. When he retired a few years ago, he and his wife Frances started Mr. O's Academy of the Arts. The Ostensens contine to be the strongest supporters of music in the Hollister elementary and middle schools.

Today, I'm hanging out at Weekend Reflections. Come join me by clicking here.

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Thursday, October 9, 2014

Register to Vote!

Are you qualified to vote, but haven't registered yet?

To qualify in California, you must be a U.S. citizen, at least 18 years old on Election Day, and a resident of California.  You may not be qualified if you have a felony criminal conviction or currently in a correctional facility, or if a court says you are mentally incompetent.

You'll need to re-register to vote if you moved or changed your name since the last election. Should you want to change your political party, you'll need to re-register, too.

You can register to vote up to 15 days before an election. Our next election is Tuesday, November 4. That means the last day for registration is October 20, 2014.

Three Ways to Register to Vote

You can register in person. In San Benito County, go to the Registrar of Voters office located at 440 Fifth Street, Room 206. That's the second floor of the old courthouse.

Your can register by mail. Pick up a voter registration application at the public library, U.S. post office, Department of Motor Vehicle office, or  San Benito County Registrar of Voters office.

You can register online at the California Online Voter Registration website.

There are no excuses. Go out and vote!

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

A Measure of Distance

On our way to the Burger Factory, the Husband's and my favorite mom-and-pop hamburger joint in Hollister, we drive by Furlong Alley. It's one of several one-block alleys in the downtown area. Furlong is hidden between San Benito and East Streets, running parallel with Second Street.

Until recently, whenever I saw the sign for Furlong Alley, I'd wonder what used to be there for the Navy guys who were stationed at the Naval Auxiliary Air Station during the 1940s. Was it a bar at which they hung out when they were in town? I asked the Husband if he thought that was the case. His answer: "You're thinking of furlough. Furlong is a measure of distance."


Furlong is one-eighth of a mile. 220 yards. I wonder why someone decided to name that stretch of road Furlong Alley? Could it be that once upon-a-time drivers needed that much of a running start to get their cars up Hill Street to Vista Park Hill, the highest point (about 380 feet high) in Downtown Hollister.

Today is all about the letter M at Mrs. Nesbitt's ABC Wednesday. That's where I'm hanging out. Come join me by clicking here.

Furlong Alley ends at San Benito Street.
Cross the street and you climb up Hill Street.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

The Second Annual San Benito Olive Festival

This Saturday, October 11, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., is the second annual San Benito Olive Festival, which celebrates the natural beauty and agricultural bounty of our county. I have no doubt that it will be another successful fun and joyful affair that will be attended by hundreds of people from near and far.

San Benito Olive Festival is both the gourmet event and the not-for-profit organization that plans, organizes, and brings the event together. The group's mission is to promote awareness and appreciation of the region's world-class culinary agriculture and premier artisans who make award-winning olive oils, wines, chocolates, Blenheim apricot products, and more. All net profits made from the event are donated to service, educational, and other community groups in San Benito County.

This year, the gourmet celebration is going to be at the gorgeous, historic Bolado Park, which is 8 miles south of Hollister. It's easy to find and reach on Highway 25, whether driving from the north or south.

There will be lots to eat, to drink, to purchase, and to enjoy at the festival. General admission tickets -- $20/adults and $10/children, ages 5-12 -- include the cost of entry to the festival, parking, cooking demonstrations, and entertainment. The $35 VIP ticket grants guests access to the wine tasting tent and five tastings of wine and craft beer from wineries in San Benito, Monterey, Santa Cruz, and Santa Clara counties. I'm a beer drinker myself, but I would be tempted to taste samples from places with such great names as Alicats Winery, Wild Eye Winery, Lightheart Cellars, and Graveyard Vineyards.

Six celebrity chefs are scheduled to conduct live cooking demonstrations of dishes using olives or olive oil. Starting off will be Chef Eric Carter, Director of the Culinary Arts at Cabrillo College in Aptos, at which the students run the popular Pino Alto Restaurant on campus. Following him will be Chef Dorothy McNett, the popular foodie legend of the California Central Coast, after which the chef duo Gene Sakahara and Sam Bozzo, also known as SakaBozzo, the twins separated at birth, from the Gilroy Garlic Festival will take the cooking stage. Next up will be Chef Mike Fisher, a Hollister native and local caterer who was trained at Le Cordon Bleu in Paris, and ending the day will be Chef David Boswell who is the Chef de Cuisine at Yahoo!

It's going to be a toss up for me -- watching the cooking demonstrations or listening to the live bands. I've heard three out of the four that will be performing Saturday, and just the music alone makes me realize what a bargain the festival tickets are for a great afternoon of fun. Festival guests will be hearing a range of music from jazz and big band by Mr. O's Jazz Band, doo-wop by The Flashbacks, and popular rock by Shiloh and The Retrospect.

I could go on and on about the San Benito Olive Festival, but I shall stop here. To learn more, check out the festival's website and read this article that the festival posted at

Today, I shall be hanging out at Our World Tuesday. Come join me by clicking here.



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