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October 2015


posted Oct 1, 2015, 2:49 PM by Kristin Snell   [ updated Oct 1, 2015, 2:50 PM ]

by Diana Pasquini, San Juan Ridge Family Resource Center

“I am the Poem of the Earth, said the voice of the rain”.......Walt Whitman

There’s something inspirational about the Rain, something that stirs the pens of poets and gladdens the hearts of these dusty wretches who thirst for its grace to shower upon us. Rain is not to be taken for granted. There’s nothing like a good, solid drought to elevate the phenomenon of water falling from the sky from a humdrum, unappreciated, often reviled occurrence to the realm of mystical experience.

Bearing water lifted to the skies halfway around the world, the clouds come rolling in. Watching the skies darken, feeling the air turn heavy, catching a distinctive scent reawakens a familiar giddiness. We feel it in our bones. Then, tap..tap..tap..we hear it on our rooftops, like a whole herd of reindeers’ hooves on Christmas Eve. Is there a more sublime moment?

These are not the drama queens of spring, noisily blowing in on brash and showy thunderbolts. Autumn rainfalls make their entrance heralded by the bugling of graceful sandhill cranes. Thirsty trees raise their limbs to embrace their liquid reassurance. Squirrels scurry to their nests as we scramble for tarps.  The first rain of autumn has fallen and the world seems somehow better. 


The Return of Toki’s Fountain

posted Oct 1, 2015, 2:48 PM by Kristin Snell

by Diana Pasquini, San Juan Ridge Family Resource Center

For years rumors have been circulating about the future of Toki’s Fountain. Once a thriving business and popular spot where folks could grab a bite to eat and visit, Toki’s has been sitting empty, shuttered, and a little forlorn for years. More than a simple small town eatery, Toki’s was a local landmark. When Toki’s closed its doors something was missing from the town of North San Juan, not just a place to eat and gather, but for many, a home away from home.

Those of us who travel Highway 49 have been witnessing a transformation, as the renovation of Toki’s Fountain is clearly evident. The old brick façade has been brightened with a fresh coat of red paint and an artfully laid stone wall has been erected along the adjacent walkway. Soon the gaping hole left in the community when Toki’s Fountain closed will be filled via the diligent and industrious efforts of Allison and Michael Green (pictured above), a couple devoted to family, food, and community.

Allison explained that the resurrection of Toki’s Fountain is truly a dream come true. “When my oldest daughter Olivia, now 17, was eight years old, we walked through here (Toki’s) with Toki and talked about one day purchasing the restaurant. Toki was very excited and hoped that I would be able to. The kids were still pretty small then. Now, eight years later, the kids are older and here we are!”  Allison, Michael and their three children live only one-half mile from the restaurant.  “We’re local, a part of this community. I’m third generation from Alleghany-Pike. My mom and dad graduated from Alleghany High. My grandmother was the school cook at Pliocene Ridge School. My husband, Michael, has lived on the Ridge since he was eight years old. I told Michael, ‘We have to do this!’ and with his full support I pursued my dream. “

No stranger to the demanding life of a restaurateur, Allison has had plenty of experience as founder and co-owner of Locos Burritos and Rhythm-n-Squeeze in Grass Valley. “I ran a restaurant before and I know what I’m getting into,” she assured. “It’s still going to be Toki’s Fountain with some of Toki’s original Okinawan recipes. We will have yaki soba and the traditional American breakfast, milkshakes and burgers.” Hoping to open before the end of this year, Toki’s Fountain will combine innovation with tradition, as the Greens will be working with Mountain Bounty Farm and other local farms to create local Farm-to-Table specials.

“We’re excited to bring some more positivity to North San Juan. So many people are working diligently to improve upon our community. We’re just happy to be a part of it.”







Got Cars?

posted Oct 1, 2015, 2:47 PM by Kristin Snell   [ updated Oct 1, 2015, 2:50 PM ]

by Diana Pasquini, San Juan Ridge Family Resource Center

Almost daily someone asks what can be done to help the Family Resource Center. Here is one simple way in which you can help the FRC, the San Juan Ridge Community Library, the Ridge community, and the entire universe. If you have a car, truck, or other vehicle that you no longer need, just one phone call to the Center for Car Donations will start a very easy process that will enrich both the library and the FRC. The Center for Car Donations will arrange for a FREE towing. The vehicle will be auctioned; and the Library and FRC will split 80% of the total auction price. The car does not need to be running. In fact, a 1996 GEO Prism (pictured) was just donated after not having run for over five years. You don’t even need the title, just the vin number. If you’d often wondered what it would be like to liberate a poor little patch of earth from the encumbrance of a rusty Camaro or beat up F-150, call the Center for Car Donations at 877-411-3662 and tell them that you want to donate a vehicle to the San Juan Ridge Community Library. It’s good for everybody!


A Place for Young Artists

posted Oct 1, 2015, 2:19 PM by Kristin Snell   [ updated Oct 1, 2015, 2:57 PM ]

by Diana Pasquini, San Juan Ridge Family Resource Center

On Monday afternoons preschool-aged boys and girls meet on the Oak Tree Campus with Mariana Worden, a teaching artist who encourages young children to be creative and have fun. Children learn about shapes and color as they experiment with a variety of media, make new friends, and let their imaginations soar.


I really enjoy teaching kids! They’re full of creative ideas and come with their own stories. They’re extremely creative. Young kids make the projects their own, with no limits to their expression.”

Mariana Worden

Teaching Artist



“I like painting the best! I painted a red moon and a blue moon.”    

                                                        Ishan Morris

                                                        ~4 years~



“I like to play with my friends and do floppy skeletons.  This is my painting of a pumpkin.”

Bodie Clark

 ~4 years~


“I liked making my beautiful rainbow.  It’s hiding behind a big blue cloud.  I like painting and I like playing.”         

                                            Iris Briar                       ~3 years~


For more information, or to enroll your 3-5 year old child in this class, please call San Juan Ridge Family Resource Center at 292.3174.




Grizzly Hill Happenings

posted Oct 1, 2015, 2:13 PM by Kristin Snell

Submitted by the Grizzly Hill Parent Teacher Club


Wednesday, October 21st * 5-7 pm

Featuring soup and stew, salad, bread and dessert



“The Good Food Program”

We are raising money to offset the higher cost of purchasing   organic meats for our organic school lunches. 

       Eating Healthy is very important to our school!

      Sponsored by the Grizzly Hill PTC



Wednesday, October 28th * 5-7 pm

Haunted House, Games, Pizza, Prizes & Goodies

Bring the Whole Family for a Night of Fun

Wear a Costume if You Dare!


Fire Prevention Open House

posted Oct 1, 2015, 2:10 PM by Kristin Snell

Saturday, October 10th

10 am-2 pm

Station #1 on Reservoir Street in NSJ 

Refreshments, fire hats, stickers and other goodies for kids, 9 volt batteries for smoke alarms, and door prizes including carbon monoxide/ smoke detectors and     chimney sweep service. 

292.9159 for info. 


Eighth Annual Autumn Shindig

posted Oct 1, 2015, 2:09 PM by Kristin Snell

From the web at:

11:30 am Gates Open — kid’s games, vendors, food and drink
12:00 pm
 Pumpkin Carving and Pie Making — entries due for judging
12:30 to 1:15 pm 
Holler Tree
1:15 to 1:45 pm 
Pie Winner announced, Beard and Mustache Contest
1:45 to 2:30 pm
 George Schroder 
2:30 to 3:15 pm
 Lawn games — sack races, three legged race
3:15 to 4:15 pm
 The Ruckrich Family Band
4:15 to 5:00 pm
 Hot Pepper Eating Contest, “Tug of Peace”, Community                             Photo
5:00 to 6:30 pm
 Belfry Brothers

The Autumn Shindig Harvest Festival is a reliable harbinger of the fall season. For the last eight years, this fun, family-focused festival has become an increasingly popular annual event to benefit the North Columbia Schoolhouse Cultural Center on the San Juan Ridge.

The festival is a daytime affair beginning at 11:30 a.m. and going until dusk. It features live music, local crafts, games for kids and adults alike, and various contests. Volunteers will be serving gourmet stew with locally sourced ingredients donated by Mountain Bounty Farm and BriarPatch Co-op as well as cold drinks, cotton candy and pies at the “sugar shack” throughout the day.

Admission for the festival is free. Attendees can purchase wooden tokens to spend on the food and game booths. Local craftspeople and farmers, including MonaMe Pottery, Kelly Patton Illustration and Sierra Seeds, will also have booths with goods on sale throughout the day.

Autumn Shindig returning favorite Bev Robinson will emcee the main stage this year. Local musicians generously sponsor the event by playing pro bono. The Ruckrich Family Band will be joined by Holler Tree and George Schroder. The Belfry Brothers will close out the night.

Anyone entering the pie-making and jack-o-lantern competitions must enter early at 12:00 p.m. for judging. The winners will receive a gift basket with donations from local businesses. A beard and mustache (real and fake) competition, sack races, and other lawn games will be held throughout the day.

Sweetland Garden Supply, Mother Truckers, Jernigan’s Tap House and BriarPatch Co-op are all providing assistance as Gold Sponsors for the Autumn Shindig this year. Many other local businesses provide additional sponsorship to help this vital part of the San Juan Ridge continue to thrive.

For more information, please call the North Columbia Schoolhouse at 265-2826 or visit us on the web at:


Community Legal Empowerment Project

posted Oct 1, 2015, 2:08 PM by Kristin Snell

by Erin Noel, Attorney at Law

When:                Friday, October 9th, 2-5 pm

Where:              San Juan Ridge Family Resource Center,  18847 Oak Tree Road ~ North San Juan

What:                 Legal and Mediation Clinic                        

Cost:                  Free, donations welcome

Need a lawyer, but want more of a say in the legal process?  Need help, but cannot afford an attorney?  Not sure which form to download, or can you use a form?  Have a dispute but don’t want to go to court?  Want to enjoy instead of tolerate the legal process?  This clinic is for you!


Do you have a dispute that you do not want to bring to court?  A need to understand more about the law before you make a binding agreement?  Need help resolving a landlord/tenant issue, code enforcement, easement or property law issue, need help with legal issues you do not understand?

Visit our monthly legal clinic!  Erin Noel is the clinic attorney, who has experience with court mediation, property and land use law, landlord/tenant law, and other areas of law.  If she does not have expertise, she may be able to refer you to another free or low cost lawyer, and help you to prepare the questions you have.

Walk in, or MAKE AN APPOINTMENT so we can better serve you. 

To make an appointment, please contact Erin Noel at 265-3425.

This clinic is staffed by volunteers, and is not affiliated with PARTNERS Family Resource Centers, Twin Ridges Elementary School District, or Nevada County Superintendent of Schools.


Need Heat?

posted Oct 1, 2015, 2:07 PM by Kristin Snell

by Diana Pasquini, San Juan Ridge Family Resource Center

Thanks to some very generous community members the San Juan Ridge Family Resource Center will soon have firewood available for those who need it. Once fire season is officially over, those who need wood may access several wheelbarrow loads during regular FRC hours. Although we now have a full woodshed, we are unable to provide households with a season’s worth of firewood. We encourage anyone who could use a little help with energy needs to call 1-888-524-5705 for assistance. There are now funds available for firewood, propane, heating oil, and other utilities. If you could use some help (Most of us can!) please don’t hesitate to call. These funds are distributed on a first-come-first-serve basis and will not be available forever.


Tip of the Month

posted Oct 1, 2015, 2:06 PM by Kristin Snell

by Ned Russell, Drug Free Coalition

Tip – Asset #12 – School Boundaries – School provides clear rules and consequences

Children cannot learn when they don't feel safe, and boundaries are one component of creating a safe learning environment for your child. Help your child understand school rules. Ask to see the school’s policy on bullying and whether ALL adults on the campus have been trained on how to respond to bullying when they see it, know of it, or it is reported to them.

To learn more about the 40 Developmental Assets (Got40?), call 271-5617 or send email to or


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