Gold Country Denizens

County art, brakes, coconut shells, Library, food, bread

By: Susan Rushton
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In December, county employee April Pay approached me with the news that the annual county employee art show, Placer Creates, opened in five sites in November and will run through Thursday, Feb. 28.

The county’s employees who are also artists invite you to investigate. Check out the Sunset Building in Rocklin; three sites in Auburn: the Domes on Fulweiler, the Larry Oddo Finance Administration Building and Community Development Resource Center, both in north Auburn; and two sites in Tahoe City: the Tahoe City Library and the Tahoe Administrative Center. To learn more, search online for Placer Creates 2019.

When you see Jerry Kopp — probably sitting out in front of Uptown Signs — congratulate him for getting the brakes fixed on his little red impossible-to-miss Ford Ranchero. Took him a while. His first, second and seventh thoughts had to do with how he did NOT want to buy a new truck. But when the car became more difficult to stop and steer, too unpredictable, he figured, maybe, it was time to do something. Like, maybe, you know, fix the brakes?

Undoubtedly all the Babblers (hanging out in the parking lot next to Alesci’s Barber Shop, formerly known as Rico’s) know this already, and every time he brings up his horror stories they shake their heads. They’re probably tired of hearing these tales — so you ask him to tell you his story. At least the brakes work now. Thank you, Jerry. Wish you’d done it sooner!

Don and I went to the State Theatre’s showing of “Monty Python and the Holy Grail” a couple of weeks ago. We’d never seen it. This put us decidedly in the minority, which we learned when Executive Director Janis Wykoff asked the sold-out audience how many had seen it before — and 2/3 of the house raised their hands.

Three of these sat behind us: Orlando and Judy Sandoval and their son Bryon. Orlando, brandishing his coconut shells, the reason for which we didn’t get at first (remember, we hadn’t seen the movie), told me, “We’ve had 40 years to see this movie 100 times.”

For this family, this movie is a tradition. They go camping, somebody mentions a line, and they spend the next two hours acting out the story. Accurately. Which, I figure, after seeing the movie, is more than the Python gang did.

I’m happy to report that Don and I sat behind the seat with Debra Oldjiewski’s name on it. She screened the (very silly and lots of fun) movie that night.

Celebrate Dr. Martin Luther King from 9:30 a.m. to noon on Monday, Jan. 21 in the General Gomez Arts and Event Center, 808 Lincoln Way. The event includes music, skits, presentations and a panel discussion about racial, economic and environmental justice. The celebration ends with a parade to the Clock Tower. For information, email: or

And another annual January event, one of my favorite fundraisers for one of my favorite organizations: the Auburn Library Dinner, sponsored by the Friends of the Auburn Library.

Rosie Stilwell, working with Madonna Anglin, says tickets are still available for this event, coming up on Sunday, Jan. 27 in the Auburn Library, 350 Nevada St. Doors open at 5, and the event includes appetizers, a silent auction, wonderful people and a great dinner. Tickets are $55. Better hurry — they sold out last year. Search online for menu and other information: FOL Auburn annual dinner 2019, or give Rosie a call: 530-885-1121.

Casey Conway reminds me that Auburn 49er Lions’ annual tasty event is approaching — another event I adore that keeps happening on a regular basis: Celebrity Chefs, 5:30-7 p.m. on Thursday, March 7 in the Placer Building on the Gold Country Fairgrounds. Tickets were $17.50 last year; more information as I get it. And I will, because I’ll be there with my Best Cake in the World, promoting Silver Screen, as always. I also said yes to Casey when he asked if I would be a sponsor of the event. If you want to help, too, give him a call: 530-305-6999. The deadline for sponsors is mid-February.

Sally Dawley called me Thursday morning with the news that Auburn’s “Butt Lady” has now removed 1,230,365 butts from Auburn’s streets, sidewalks and parking lots. Thanks, Sally.

One business leaves, not a wonderful thing, but it’s good that another takes its place. A sign on the door where New Dawn Bakery had its storefront (the old Hilda’s site, 1102 Lincoln Way) announces the imminent arrival of Artisan Bead Bakery, promising baked goods from The Baker and the Cakemaker. Opening summer 2019. Gee, I’m proud of these guys, a company that Pat and Pete Enochs’ kids started.

I’ve been meaning to include this for quite a while. Several months ago, walking in downtown Auburn, I crossed the street and someone honked at me. I saw a hand waving. I didn’t see the face — in shadow, as I remember — but that person certainly knew me. So I waved back. Enthusiastically, because of course I knew them. This is Auburn, after all.

That’s my town. Got any items for me? Email me at