Disaster Preparedness – Neighbors Helping Neighbors

Last week’s Petaluma City Council meeting (7/6/15) featured a two part presentation by members of the Fire Department related to Emergency Preparedness.  You may want to also see my earlier post Can Sonoma Communicate?. Part I of the meeting reviewed what was learned from the recent Napa Earthquake, and Part II reported on the city’s current readiness in the event of a major disaster. Here is the video segment of the city’s meeting on this agenda item:

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Disaster Preparedness - Neighbors Helping Neighbors 1 One important point expressed was that citizens should be prepared to react and to be prepared to be self-sufficient because they could be on their own for three-to-five days without assistance from the city’s first responders. Over the past several years, there have been various Disaster Preparedness programs offered by local groups and organizations that address these needs.

One major concern of this blogger has been how will neighborhoods communicate with one another when all power is out and normal means of communication by Because of the large of volumes of callstelephone, cell phone, computer, etc. are not available. This concern motivated a group of local licensed amateur radio operators to form a Neighborhood Ham Watch (NHW) network that been has conducting weekly Ham radio check-ins, as well as monthly face-to-face meetings for education and training.

There are three main NHW purposes: (1) Get on your radio and talk to other operators from other neighborhoods, and thereby ease tension and isolation associated with an Firefighters Presentation of Disaster Preparednessextended power outage; (2) establish a NHW net and communicate with local Emergency Operation Centers (EOCs), and (3) send welfare traffic at the request of neighbors to extended family outside the stricken area to relieve concerns and reduce clogging of telephone systems that might still be functioning.

Hopefully, this blog will attract the attention of licensed Hams in the 94952, 94953, and 94954 zip code areas, and motivate them to register their name, call sign, and e-mail address with the Petaluma NHW network. Please e-mail Bill Hammerman, KI6GOO, at [email protected]

VIDEO: Petaluma’s Draper Dayton Wins USA Fencing’s Summer Nationals

An eighth grader at Sonoma Country Day school Draper Dayton, who has been fencing since the age of seven, recently switch coaches and now working out four days per week at the Massialas Foundation’s The M Team Fencing club in San Francisco.  That change must have benefited him as he just won the youth 12 division at the national championship in San Jose at the USA Fencing Summer Nationals.

According to the Press Democrat he had entered the tournament as a second seed fencer in his division and he had to beat the number one seed Brian Li of Boston to win the championship.

Here is how the match played out Dayton is on the left and Li is on the Right:

Celebrating 300 Posts!

Since launching our website mid last year, we have shared 300 positive posts about Petaluma! We only show the 10 most recent posts on our main page.  So we thought it would be helpful in sharing 4 helpful hints on how to navigate and find earlier posts.

300 is a lot to go through if you are trying to find something.  But we have made it easy and here are a few tricks can do right now to find what you are looking for on our site:

1. Use the Search Bar.  This is located on the top right next to the social media icons.  Click on the magnifying glass and a place to enter your keyword search term will appear. Simply type in any subject, in this example we are searching for any posts on the Butter & Egg Days Parade, and hit <enter> key on your keyboard.  Any post mentioning Butter & Egg Days will show up.

Positively Petaluma Search Bar

2. Use the Category drop down on the lower right sidebar.  This is great if you want to follow any one contributor or subject.  Maybe you want to read Bill Hammerman’s posts on his Our Favorite Rivertown Town. Maybe you just want to read about Petaluma food or wine.  Simply click on the drop down and click on the category to read a series of articles:

Categories on Positively Petaluma



3. Use the Archives dropdown.  Click on Positively Petaluma Archives dropdown and select which month you wish to view.  This is great if you were on vacation and unplugged in any time frame and you can choose the month and year to get caught up on posts you missed.

Positively Petaluma Archives By Month


4. Click on Older Posts button you can find after the last post on the main page. Simply click the Older Posts >> button and it will show you the next 10 most recent posts.

Older Posts Positively Petaluma

We hope that you found this information useful.  We wish to thank our followers for believing in what we are trying to do here.  We have over 150,000 views of our website since starting and it’s growing faster than ever (65% of those views just over the past 5 months).  Thanks in advance for sharing our website with your friends and family. Our best to you and have a wonderful day.

VIDEO HIGHLIGHTS: Petaluma Valley Wins Big at District 35 Championship

12-year old Majors Division Little League Championship were played last night at Rincon Valley Little League Park in Santa Rosa. The teams came into this competition with one loss each hoping to take one more step on the road to Williamsport.

Petaluma Valley wins big! Here are the highlights of courtesy of Youth Sports Network:

Petaluma is Plugged In Thanks To Two Petaluma Artists

PG&E Plug-10The power building downtown is actually a historic site built in the 1920s.  PG&E wanted to give the building a face lift so they did a fantastic job giving it a new clean coat of paint. They also wanted to work in cooperation with a local artist Joel Jones of Basal Ganglia Studio to do something, well… different. Ganglia worked with structure fabricator Shawn Thorsson of Thorsson & Associates Workshop to build a gigantic plug and electrical outlet on the side of the building. So literally, at least in appearance, Petaluma is plugged in.

PG&E Plug-11Yesterday the area was coned off for an artist reception held in the adjacent courtyard with live music.

PG&E Plug-12


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What In The Heck Is That?

Rhino Vehicle Petaluma

UPDATE August 8, 2015: Check out also Petaluma artists prep for Burning Man, By Yovanna Biererich, Argus Courier Staff.


A local artist, Kevin Clark, received a grant from Black Rock City Arts to build Medusa Madness for this year’s Burning Man event.  Clark, who is also co-owner of The Shop on Kentucky St.,  is known for his restaurant design and Rhino Vehicle that rolled down the streets in this year’s Butter & Egg Days Parade.  His rhino vehicle will serve as the stage for the Rivertown Revival event on July 18. He assisted with previous year’s Burning Man temples in 2001 and 2002.  This huge Medusa head will be located in the front of the “Key Hole” in center camp giving it high status as one of the major displays at this year’s Burning Man event. Medusa’s head will sport a cobra tiara and covered with polished-mirror finished stainless steel.

Medusa-11Medusa Madness will have 25 snake heads whose bodies will be 400 ft. long and require over 800 barrels to construct. Each section has to be welded on to the structure.  Last year  we covered the Temple of Grace built for the 2014 event by local artist David Best.  Best’s project required tons of volunteers to construct.  See VIDEO UPDATE: #Petaluma’s David Best Builds 2014 Burning Man Temple In Petaluma  and Photos of the Temple of Grace Built By Petaluma Artist David Best And Many Petaluman Volunteers.  The difference with this project is it cannot use volunteers because its construction requires skilled labor.  When we were on site there were 4 active welders building the structure.

Medusa-10The snake heads will also be covered with mirrored finished stainless steel.  The heads will breathe fire requiring over 100 gallons of propane.  Their eyes will light up using 200 MRG 16 RGB LED lights.  The eyes will blink and roll.

Medusa-13Inside of the structure will serve as an atrium for people to move about inside the structure.  The entire structure will be finished in 4 to 5 weeks and will be moved to the Burning Man camp on August 22.

What’s Going On This Week In #Petaluma? July 11th through July 17th

2014 Petaluma Art & Garden Festival-22Don’t miss the 14th Annual Art & Garden Festival Sun., 11am – 5pm: Kentucky & 4th Streets. Over 100 booths with unique items, local, food wine & craft beer tasting, great music on two stages, lots of kids activities. Check out our post covering last year: 2014 #Petaluma Art & Garden Festival A Great Success.

Articulate FormsArticulate FormsClosing Reception Saturday 6-10pm at Griffin Maps Designs Closing out a great group show of local artists with a Sculptural theme. Enjoy snacks & drinks while checking out metal, wood, mixed materials, lighting artwork as well as cast jewelry.  405 East D Street Suites D&F

Historic Downtown Walking Tour – Sat. 10:30am: Costumed docents stroll you through historic downtown. Donations welcome. Free. Petaluma Historical Library & Museum, 20 Fourth St. www.petalumamuseum.com 778-4398.

Photo by BETH SCHLANKER/ The Press Democrat
Photo by BETH SCHLANKER/ The Press Democrat

Saturday Farmer’s Market in Walnut Park – Sat., 2-5:30 pm: Over 60 booths selling farm-fresh produce and local products. Live entertainment & activities in Walnut Park.  415-999-5635.

Boating at the Barn – Sun., 10am-1pm: Free kayak and row boat rides at the River Heritage Center in Steamer Landing Park. 769-0910.

max_image_7122East-Side Farmers’ MarketTuesdays, 10am-1:30 pm: Year-round, rain or shine! New Location: Deer Creek Shopping Center (Friedman’s) 429 No. McDowell.  415-999-5635.

Wednesday Evening Farmers Market – Wed., 4:30-8 pm:  Two blocks of vendors, music & fun in Theatre District.  Second, B & C Streets.

Petaluma welcomes the “Flame of Hope” – Mon., 2-5pm: The official torch for the Special Olympics will be carried through Petaluma with a ceremony at Walnut Park at 5:30pm.


Interview with #Petaluma’s Rising Star! Singer/Songwriter Em Rossi

UPDATE July 18, 2015: Em Rossi featured in Petaluma Star YOUNG PETALUMA MUSICIAN LAUNCHES BIG CAREEROur interview her her below is mentioned and linked from the star piece.

UPDATE July 16, 2015: Just 6 days after we published this post and our interview below of Em Rossi, the Petaluma Argus Courier publishes this July 16, 2015 article: Em Rossi singing her way to a career in music by Kate Hoover, Argus-Courier Intern.  We wish Em the best and look forward to her songs hitting the music charts.


Many good things come out of Petaluma and up-an-coming singer/songwriter Em Rossi is primed to be one of them. A Petaluma native, Rossi’s music is her passion and form of expression. It’s what she does to brighten a dreary day and to make the good days even better. Rossi attends Petaluma High School and at 17 years old will be a senior in the fall. Her recently release debut single, “MADNESS”  below will be playing on KSRO 1350 and FM 103.5, where Rossi is scheduled to be interviewed on August 4th.

Here is her latest single called “Madness”:

Ashley Collingwood: How did you get started singing?

Em Rossi: Singing was just kind of something that came naturally to me. From a young age my parents always said that I just made noise around the house—I would sing to the radio, I’d sing to the music being played everywhere—so around eight years old they finally decided “okay, put her in music lessons.” So after that I started being a little bit trained and then it just kind of went on from there.

Em Rossi-5
Photo By Ashley Collingwood

Ashley: What inspires your music?

Em: I would say what inspires my music is just my life experiences in the past year. You know my father passed away unexpectedly so that was a major personal change in my life. So with this new album I just focused on using that as my vent to really express the thoughts and emotions that were going through my head and just get out what I needed to say and wanted to share to people.


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VIDEO: Our Favorite #Petaluma Chef Cooking Ribs For KTVU Channel 2

Man those ribs look good!  Got to try it. Petaluma’s Laurie Figone cooks ribs for news anchor Gasia Mikaelian who holds up a bottle of Petaluma Hills beer while the camera man tries to grab the beer from her.  The World Food Dessert champ continues to show Gasia how to make a red white and blue dessert with a scoop of Petaluma’s Haverton Hill Creamery sheep milk ice cream.

Give a minute for the video to load on the screen.

Here are other related stories about Laurie Figone World Dessert Champion: