Back in town and readying for winter | SierraSun.com

Back in town and readying for winter

Norm and Alan Nicholls

Alice and I returned home early last week after spending two weeks with our daughter, Christy, in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. We also went to Charlotte, North Carolina, to watch two NASCAR races at the Lowe’s Motor Speedway.

Like most spectator sports, you can see more coverage, replays, etc. on television; but being at a race in person with over 120,000 spectators watching and partying, plus the noise of the race car engines at speeds nearing 200 mph, is indescribable. It was lots of fun!

As we were driving back to Truckee from the Sacramento airport, we began seeing the colors of fall as we began climbing into the foothills. And the colors of the turning leaves intensified as we climbed higher in elevation. The groves of aspens in the Cisco Grove area were particularly vibrant. However, the aspen trees on Highway 267, above Northstar, are still the best around in my mind!

We’ve always enjoyed fall, when we distinctly have one, due to the beauty of our mountain environment, the changing of the weather, the crispness and clarity of the air, the reduced number of visitors, two-for-one dinners, Truckee Wolverine football and so much more. It is definitely a time when you can slow down and take a hard look at the beautiful place we live in.

Yes, winter is just around the corner and it’s time to get ready for it. A few items on my list of things to do before winter: Close all my foundation vents, disconnect and store all my hoses, disconnect and winterize my sprinkler system, check my cars (anti-freeze, tires, windshield washer, windshield wipers plus apply a new coat of Rain-X to my windshields), remove pine needles from the valleys of my roof and from my decks, take in the deck furniture, tape up my trees and shrubs as needed, check my heater ducts and insulation under my home (to make sure the varmints didn’t pull anything down or apart during the summer), pull off the screens from my first floor windows and store them in the garage, and clean (replace) my furnace filters. For those of you with wood burning stoves and fireplaces, get your chimney checked and cleaned.

It is also time to prep my lawn for a long winter’s sleep as well as to get it ready for my annual “battle of the voles.” I dropped by the Villager Nursery this morning and spoke to Sarah. She suggested I wait a couple of weeks or wait for a forecast of some measurable snow, then apply Biosol fertilizer and Molemax mole and vole repellent mix generously. The Molemax mix has a castor oil base that the voles apparently do not like the smell of.

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Therefore you want a strong dose on the lawn right before it is covered with snow and when the ground freezes.

I made the mistake of not staying up with local news “on line” while I was gone. It has been very difficult to catch up on ten back issues of the newspaper. (Oh, how I miss the once-a-week publication of the Sierra Sun!)

One of the articles that caught my eye in particular was the impasse over the future of the Ponderosa Golf Course. I do hope that there still is a possible “light at the end of the tunnel” for this local golf course that was built over 40 years ago by local volunteers and contractors. It would be a shame to lose the last affordable golf course in the Truckee area. It would also be embarrassing, in my mind, to boast one of the highest densities of golf courses per square mile in Northern California, yet not have one course that the average local wage earner can afford to play on.

While I was in South Carolina I received a call on my answering machine from Yolanda Lopez. When I called her she explained that her father, Duco, and brother, Rudy, opened Don Juan’s in 1982. The Lopez family moved here from South central Los Angeles and opened the restaurant on Hill Top. The restaurant was named after her grandfather, Don Juan. His picture hung proudly near the entrance of the restaurant.

The Truckee River Bank was the bank established by local business people in the early ’80s. Apparently the local business community was not too happy with the two local banks and how they handled small business people.

According to Bonnie Seymour and Charlie White, Milt Seymour, Jim Bezzerides, and Steve Boice financed the feasibility study for a new bank for Truckee. The study results and the interest by the Truckee business community came out positive.

Original founding directors included: Seymour, White, Bezzerides, Glen Stice, Bill Stephens, Morgan Jones, Tom Watson, Pat Callahan, Jack Leonesio, Bill McClintock and Donald Strand. We will continue this local success story in our next column.

Jackie Wells was our early bird winner and called her answer in at 4:50 a.m. Other winners included Mark Brown, Jerry Blakeley, Carla Beebe, Betty Baker, Ron Rettig, Gordy Kjer, Gabi Schwarz, Sharon Cook, Keith Mickelson, Leah Krone, and Tom MacDonald.