Bat Talk and Walk

By Yolo Basin Foundation  |  2018-05-17

Meet a live Mexican free-tailed bat and watch them fly. Photo by Joy Elson

WEST SACRAMENTO, CA (MPG) - Enjoy the nightlife and meet live bats. Watch bats leave Highway 80 at the Yolo Causeway as they fly to eat crop pests and mosquitoes throughout the valley. Learn about these amazing mammals at one of the popular summer Bat Talk and Walk programs with Yolo Basin Foundation. 30 dates mid-June to mid-September from which to choose.

About 250,000 Mexican free-tailed bats call the Yolo Bypass Wildlife Area home. Each evening, in the summer, these beneficial animals each millions insects.

Following a 45-minute indoor presentation on bat natural history and meeting the live bats, the group will carpool out to the Yolo Bypass Wildlife Area to watch the “fly-out” of the largest colony of Mexican free-tailed bats in California. The bats emerge in long ribbons as they head out to hunt for insects for the night. To get to the viewing site, the group will caravan through wetlands and rice fields to an area not open to the public.

Registration required www.yolobasin.org or (530) 757-3780.

Yolo Basin Foundation is a nonprofit organization dedicated to the appreciation and stewardship of wetlands and wildlife through education and innovative partnerships. The Yolo Bypass Wildlife Area is owned and managed by the California Department of Fish and Wildlife.

“Steps to Success” Mental Health and Addiction Diversion Program Starts

Yolo County Release  |  2018-05-23

WEST SACRAMENTO, CA (MPG) - District Attorney Jeff Reisig announced today that the “Steps to Success” (S2S) Officer Assisted Diversion program has started in Davis.  During the past week Davis Police officers received training on this new program.  The project is intended to reduce recidivism and advance the recovery of people involved in the criminal justice system who have a history of mental health and/or substance use disorders.

When individuals’ behaviors that led to their criminal offense is connected to mental illness and/or substance use disorders, officers will use this new procedure.  Instead of arresting the individuals, the officer engages them to determine whether they want help with their mental illness and/or substance use disorder.  The officer assesses whether they want to work on changing their circumstances and then quickly connects them with services.  The goal is to provide assistance to these individuals when they are ready for change.

For those interested in the program, the officer will refer them into the S2S program by fast tracking their court date four weeks out instead of the normal twelve weeks.  During this four week period team members will assess these individuals using evidenced based screening tools.  Individuals with higher needs receive supportive services that include intensive case management, substance use disorder treatment, mental health services, permanent housing assistance and civil-legal assistance.  An assigned case manager will work with participants to design an individual case plan designed to address their specific needs.  At their first appearance in court, participants will be placed into a collaborative supervision with a probation officer and case managers working together with the model successfully used in Mental Health Court that reduced recidivism and hospital stays while increasing outpatient treatment engagement.  

These individuals will also participate in a Neighborhood Court restorative justice conference to resolve their criminal charges.  Successful participants will reintegrate into the community after addressing their mental health issue or substance use disorders while also avoiding criminal convictions which can often be an impediment to future employment and housing stability.

“With Steps to Success we hope to address the root cause of criminal activity,” said Reisig.  “If we can help people get healthy, they will not be in and out of the criminal justice system and we will ultimately reduce recidivism.”

CommuniCare Health Centers conducts the clinical assessments and provides case management, Empower Yolo provides housing assistance, and civil-legal services are provided by Legal Services of Northern California.

Karen Larsen, Director of Yolo County’s Health and Human Services Agency, stated “Steps to Success is an exciting opportunity for our County partners to come together across systems and address some of the gaps that hinder the success of our residents struggling with mental health and substance use disorders.”

This project is funded by a Proposition 47 grant of nearly $6 million, to be spent over a 38-month period, with the goal of expanding the County’s Neighborhood Court diversion program. The project is a collaborative effort between the Yolo County Health and Human Services Agency, District Attorney’s Office, Probation Department, and the Public Defender’s Office.  The Officer Assisted Diversion component will expand to the other police agencies in the near future.

“The Yolo County Probation Department is proud to be a part of the multi-year collaborative effort,” said Probation Deputy Chief Zachary Grounds.  “This program will enhance our current continuum to provide early, efficient, and accurate treatment for those with mental illness or addiction and is another step that the Yolo criminal justice system has made toward closing service gaps and providing rehabilitation.”

The District Attorney’s Neighborhood Court program is seeking volunteers to participate in the restorative justice conferences.  Individuals with loved ones suffering form mental illness or substance use disorder are particularly encouraged to participate.  For additional information on this program, please visit www.yoloda.org/nc, email Nicole.Kirkaldy@yolocounty.org or call 530.666.8378.

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Bumgarner Expected to Make Rehab Start Saturday in Sacramento

By Sacramento River Cats  |  2018-05-23

Photo by Barry Sibert

San Francisco Giants’ Ace is Scheduled to Begin Rehabbing His Broken Left Pinky Finger

WEST SACRAMENTO, CA (MPG) - Four-time All-Star, three-time World Champion, and 2014 World Series MVP Madison Bumgarner is expected join the Sacramento River Cats Saturday, May 26 as he begins his Major League rehab assignment. The Giants’ ace is scheduled to start Saturday night as the River Cats host the Albuquerque Isotopes.

Bumgarner is rehabbing a broken pinky finger on his left hand, an injury he sustained when he was struck by a comebacker in a Spring Training game on March 23. As part of his rehab, Bumgarner threw a batting practice session this weekend at AT&T Park in San Francisco and threw a simulated game to Giants hitters on Tuesday in Houston. The lefty is expected throw about 45 pitches on Saturday, and make at least two starts before rejoining the Giants’ rotation.

The 28-year-old was drafted by the San Francisco Giants in the first round (10th overall) of the MLB June Amateur Draft in 2007. He made his Major League debut on September 8, 2009 and was a key contributor in the Giants’ 2010 Postseason run. Bumgarner made history during the 2014 Postseason, throwing a record-setting 52.2 innings, including a historic five-inning save in Game 7 to clinch the Championship for San Francisco.

Bumgarner’s rehab assignment in Sacramento is scheduled to begin this Saturday, May 26 as the River Cats host the visiting Albuquerque Isotopes at Raley Field. First pitch is 7:07 p.m. and gates will open at 5:00 p.m. Tickets and ticket packages are still available at rivercats.com. For more information, please call 916.371.HITS (4487) or visit rivercats.com.

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SMUD, CDFW Stock Thousands of Trout in Reservoirs

By SMUD  |  2018-05-22

Some of the 10,000 pounds of trout being delivered to Union Valley Reservoir while a television news photographer shoots video. This is the fourth of 50 summers SMUD and CDFW will stock three Crystal Basin Recreation Area reservoirs with at least 25,000 pounds of fish. The fish stocking effort helps SMUD meet conditions of operating its federal license to operate its Upper American River Project hydroelectric facilities. Photo courtesy SMUD

SACRAMENTO REGION, CA (MPG) - SMUD and the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) are again stocking three Sierra reservoirs with rainbow trout. The fish planting will run through August with 25,000 pounds of fish stocked into Union Valley, Ice House and Loon Lake reservoirs in El Dorado County. The amount of fish stocked can number as high as 50,000 pounds in a given year, depending on matched stocking by the California Department of Fish and Wildlife. This is the fourth consecutive summer SMUD and CDFW have combined efforts to stock the reservoirs.

The trout planting is intended to enhance angling opportunities for the public. According to surveys, fishing tops the reasons folks visit the Crystal Basin Recreation Area. On average, the stocked trout weigh one to two pounds each, with a handful of trophy fish included. This year SMUD is working with the owners of the Ice House Resort to install a board where anglers can post pictures of their catch from Crystal Basin reservoirs.  The “Crystal Basin Bragging Board” will offer anglers the opportunity to show off a photo of any catch they think is worthy. A scale will be made available as well if anglers wish to weigh their catch and claim biggest fish bragging rights. 

SMUD proactively works to improve the quality of life in El Dorado County, where many SMUD employees call home and work, and where the electric utility owns and operates the Upper American River Project (UARP), a system of hydroelectric generation facilities.

In 2014, SMUD was awarded a new 50-year license by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to continue operating the UARP, which provides nearly 700 megawatts of low-cost, clean, non-carbon-emitting hydro power, enough to provide about 15 to 20 percent of SMUD’s energy capacity during an average year. The fish-stocking effort helps SMUD meet conditions of operating its FERC license for the UARP.

SMUD will coordinate six separate trout plantings from June through August. Union Valley, the largest of the three reservoirs, will get 10,000 pounds; Ice House, 8,750 pounds; and, Loon Lake, 6,250 pounds. The fish provided by SMUD will come from Mount Lassen Trout Farms of Payne’s Creek. The company also stocks SMUD’s Rancho Seco Lake, which annually hosts the very popular Trout Derby.

Fishing licenses are available for purchase from more than 1,400 license agents throughout the state and can also be obtained online at wildlife.ca.gov/licensing.

For more information about UARP and associated projects as well as current reservoir and stream release conditions, please visit smud.org and the Community and Recreational Areas Web pages.

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SACRAMENTO REGION, CA (MPG) -  Seven Sacramento area museums will participate in Blue Star Museums, a collaboration among the National Endowment for the Arts, Blue Star Families, the Department of Defense and more than 2,000 museums across America to offer free admission to all active duty military personnel and their families starting the Saturday of Memorial Day weekend (May 26) and continuing through Labor Day (September 3), 2018. The seven local museums participating in Blue Star Museums include the following: Aerospace Museum of California, California Automobile Museum, California Museum, Crocker Art Museum, Fairytale Town, Powerhouse Science Center and the Sacramento History Museum.

This year’s participating Blue Star Museums represent not just fine arts museums, but also science museums, history museums, zoos, nature centers and children’s museums. The free admission program is available to any bearer of a Geneva Convention common access card (CAC), a DD Form 1173 ID card, or a DD Form 1173-1 ID card, which includes active duty military (Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, Coast Guard), National Guard and Reserve members and up to five immediate family members.  
 
Before planning a visit, please contact the individual museums for hours of operation and note some are normally closed on Mondays and in observance of holidays such as Memorial Day and Labor Day. For more information or a complete list of participating Blue Star museums, please visit https://www.arts.gov/national/blue-star-museums.For more information about upcoming activities offered by Sacramento area museums, “like” them on Facebook atwww.Facebook.com/SacMuseums, follow them on Instagram and Twitter @SacMuseums or visit the user-friendly website at www.SacMuseums.org.
 
About Blue Star Museums
Blue Star Museums is a collaboration among the National Endowment for the Arts, Blue Star Families, the Department of Defense, and more than 2,000 museums across America. The program runs from the Saturday of Memorial Day weekend, May 26, 2018 through Labor Day, September 3, 2018. The free admission program is available for those currently serving in the United States Military - Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, Coast Guard as well as Active Duty and Reservists, National Guardsman (regardless of status), U.S. Public Health Commissioned Corps, NOAA Commissioned Corps, and up to five family members. Qualified members must show a Geneva Convention common access card (CAC), DD Form 1173 ID card (dependent ID), or a DD Form 1173-1 ID card for entrance into a participating Blue Star Museum.Follow Blue Star Museums on Twitter @NEAarts and @BlueStarFamily, #bluestarmuseums.
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Railroad Museum to Dazzle & Delight during a “BIG Weekend of Small Trains” on Father’s Day Weekend

By T-Rock Communications  |  2018-05-21

About the California State Railroad Museum Foundation
The mission of the California State Railroad Museum Foundation (CSRMF) is to generate revenue and awareness on behalf of its destinations, while supporting the preservation, interpretation and promotion of our railroad heritage. The Foundation provides funding for ongoing support of numerous programs, both at the museum
SACRAMENTO REGION, CA (MPG) - The California State Railroad Museum & Foundation have exciting plans to dazzle and delight visitors with a special “BIG Weekend of Small Trains” on Father’s Day weekend - Saturday, June 16 and Sunday, June 17, 2018. 
 
This family-favorite small train extravaganza showcases a magical assortment of trains, hundreds of feet of track and an array of buildings and accessories. For the “BIG Weekend of Small Trains,” local organizations and devoted enthusiasts will set up shop in the Museum, filling the Roundhouse with delightful model and toy train layouts of every description while being surrounded by impressive full-scale locomotives. Visitors of all ages will marvel at the variety of locomotives that pull pretend passengers and scaled-down shipments through all kinds of scenery, whether modeled on real places or created in the imaginations of the collectors.
 
“BIG Weekend of Small Trains” visitors are also encouraged to explore the Museum that is home to 225,000 square feet of exhibits and beautifully restored railroad cars and locomotives that illustrate railroad history in California and the West.
 
All “BIG Weekend of Small Trains” activities are included with Museum admission: $12 for adults; $6 for youths ages 6-17; free for children ages 5 and under. For more information about this special event or the California State Railroad Museum in general, please call 916-323-9280 or visit https://www.californiarailroad.museum/
 
Subscribe to California State Parks News via e-mail at info@parks.ca.gov or via RSS feed.
 
California State Parks Mission
To provide for the health, inspiration and education of the people of California by helping to preserve the state’s extraordinary biological diversity, protecting its most valued natural and cultural resources, and creating opportunities for high quality outdoor recreation.
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New Mental Health Program Targets Pre-teens

By Sac County News  |  2018-05-17

​​SACRAMENTO REGION, CA (MPG) - The Mental Health Services Oversight and Accountability Commission has awarded Sacramento County Behavioral Health Services more than $2 million dollars in grant funding as part of Senate Bill (SB) 82 Investment in Mental Health Wellness Act third round crisis triage grant funds. ​

Sacramento is one of 11 counties to receive this third round grant funding aimed at increasing mental health services in schools for youth ages 11-14 years. 

“As we continue to build out our services continuum, we are including more services targeted at youth,” says Uma Zykofsky, Sacramento County Behavioral Health Director. 

This funding will allow Sacramento County to position three, two-person mental health service teams in three targeted middle school campuses within Sacramento County. Sacramento County’s Children and Youth Crisis Service Needs Assessment revealed gaps in the existing service continuum on school campuses for students, including a lack of awareness of mental health issues for children and crisis services. This program aims to​ close these identified gaps. 

The new program, Safe Zone Squad, will consist of a Youth Advocate Mental Health Worker and a Mental Health Counselor. Each team will have designated and consistent office hours to support walk-in crisis needs and to create a dependable presence. Each middle school campus will have a dedicated team so that students see the same team members throughout their days. The teams will work with students, faculty and parents to help demystify and destigmatize mental illness, provide education on managing escalating stress and learning how to identify and help someone who is distressed. 

"This grant is very important to Sacramento County. We are making great strides in creating a more complete responsive continuum of care for our community,” adds Zykofsky. “This grant helps bring education and behavioral health services together."

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WEST SACRAMENTO, CA (MPG) -  All are welcome to attend the Friends of the Davis Public Library’s Annual Meeting on Sunday, May 20, 2018 at 2:00 p.m. when State Librarian, Greg Lucas will be the featured speaker. The event will be in the Blanchard Room of the Mary L. Stephens Davis Branch Library, located at 315 E. 14th Street in Davis.  Light refreshments will be served following the meeting.

Gov. Jerry Brown appointed Greg Lucas California’s 25th State Librarian in May 2014. Previously, Greg was the bureau chief for the San Francisco Chronicle and covered politics and policy at the State Capitol for nearly 20 years.  Greg has a degree in communications from Stanford University, a Masters in Professional Writing from the University of Southern California and recently completed his Masters in Library and Information Science at San Jose State University in January 2018.

The Yolo County Library has received grants from the State Library to fund programs such as the Book Bike and Books by Mail, which both improve access to library resources for individuals that are unable to visit the library.  The Yolo County Library recently received a grant from the State Library to provide all K-12 students with library cards and training on resources at the beginning of each school year.  The program will be piloted with the Esparto Unified School District in the 2018-19 school year.

In addition to Lucas speaking, the Friends of Davis Public Library will hold their annual meeting to reflect on the year’s accomplishments and to elect new officers for the coming year.  Non-members are welcome to attend the meeting and information on joining the Friends will be available for those interested.  Annually, the Davis Friends contribute around $100,000 to the Mary L. Stephens Davis Branch Library and the South Davis Montgomery Branch to provide for monthly programs, the annual summer reading program and additional funds for the library’s book and resources collection.  The Davis Friends also run the Logos Book Store, located at 513 2nd Street in Davis.

No reservations are required and all programs are free to attend. The Mary L. Stephens Davis Branch Library is accessible for persons with disabilities.  For more information regarding this event, contact Scott Love at (530) 757-5595 or scott.love@yolocounty.org.  For more information about the Friends of the Davis Public Library, visit: www.davislibraryfriends.org.  For more information about Yolo County Library visit: www.yolocountylibrary.org or connect with the Library on Facebook at: www.facebook.com/yolocountylibrary.org.

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The Force Holding Animal Abusers Accountable

By Sac County News  |  2018-05-16

SACRAMENTO REGION, CA (MPG) - Animal abuse, neglect and cruelty is more prevalent in our region than most people know. Local animal regulation agencies work cases every day, pulling animals out of precarious living conditions or caring for animals that were victims of abuse or neglect. 

One of the most popular recent situations was the puppy Thomas, found on the side of the road – clearly injured. X-rays showed he had been struck in the skull with a blunt object, shattering his skull causing severe injury to his head and eyes. 

The Bradshaw Animal Shelter, where Thomas was brought by a kind citizen after finding him, immediately began lifesaving treatment to manage his pain and treat the infection spreading in his body. Meanwhile, the shelter went public with Thomas’s story – asking for any information about Thomas. No one came forward with information and Thomas’s abuse/cruelty case is still unsolved. 

The good news is that through the generosity of the shelter’s non-profit, T.E.A.M. (Teaching everyone Animals Matter), Thomas was able to get brain surgery and is now living a nearly normal life. 

Thomas is just one example of hundreds the area animal shelters see every year. Because of the serious nature of the crimes seen, the Sacramento County District Attorney’s office launched an Animal Cruelty Task Force – comprised of representatives from each animal shelter in Sacramento County and the Sheriff and Police Departments. ​

Together, these agencies are working to identify, investigate and prosecute those responsible for abuse, neglect and cruelty to animals. Research shows that the link between animal abuse and crimes committed against persons is strong. Often, animal abuse is a gateway to crimes against humanity. With the help of the task force, Sacramento County Deputy District Attorney Hilary Bagley is looking to put a stop to this progressively violent behavior. 

Deputy District Attorney Hilary Bagley on why she felt this task force collaborative was critical:

“For too many years in Sacramento it has been the worst of scenarios for animals.  Prosecution relies on both law enforcement and animal control to make animal abuse investigation more of a priority within their agencies.​

Law Enforcement more often than not, doesn’t receive training in animal abuse.  Like any other crime, animal abuse constitutes violations of the Penal Code and law enforcement is responsible for investigating them.  ​

At the same time Animal Control agencies have lacked training their officers as investigators.  The officers all need to develop the ability to take statements, write reports and understand their responsibilities to develop and investigate cases.  Our community expects that both animal care and law enforcement officers are performing their duties so that violators are accountable.  

We have formed the task force to unite these agencies, share successes and learn from failures.  Many on the force share an affinity for animals.  We can only improve by communication, working together and joining all forces.”

 

The Animal Cruelty Task Force is just one example of progressive collaboration efforts across County agencies and across jurisdictional lines – all with the goal of creating a Sacramento Countywe all love. 

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Kings Draw Second Pick in NBA Draft Lottery

Rich Peters, MPG Editor  |  2018-05-16

SACRAMENTO, CA (MPG) - In what will be arguably the most important draft in Sacramento Kings history, the odds have already bounced in their favor. They made the biggest jump in Tuesday night’s lottery, moving all the way from the projected seventh overall pick to the second slot behind the tank-happy Phoenix Suns. It is the first time in the modern lottery era that the kings have held a top three pick.

But with a long, dismal history of draft selections recently highlighted by Jimmer Fredette, Thomas Robinson, Ben McLemore and Nik Stauskas, does it even matter at all? For what it’s worth, this is a deep draft class headlined by Deandre Ayton out of Arizona, Luka Doncic out of Real Madrid, Jaren Jackson out of Michigan State, Marvin Bagley III out of Duke and Trae Young out of Oklahoma, to name a few. The talent is definitely there.

The Suns appeared to have their sights set on Ayton all season long as they gloriously tanked. He looks ready to make an immediate impact in the league and keeping him in the state of Arizona makes sense. However, Suns new head coach, Igor Kokoskov, was Doncic's head coach when he won the 2017 EuroBasket title and is big on his guy. This may change things in the Kings’ favor yet again heading into the draft.

The Kings have a lot of options, but if Ayton fell to the number two pick Sacramento would have no choice but to take him. The 7’0”, 260 pound, 19-year-old averaged 20.1 points, 11.6 rebounds and 1.9 blocks in his freshman year. “Elite physical tools, soft touch at the rim and a promising jump shot make Ayton the likely top pick,” according to SI’s latest Top 100 Prospect Rankings. “His sheer size and strength presents a matchup problem for most any defender, and he may be the most athletic 7-foot prospect to come along this decade.”

Ayton would be a no brainer for Sacramento, as it is extremely rare to find a 7-footer with his arsenal. But it surely won’t be that easy, it never is for a Kings organization that hasn’t reached the playoffs or finished with a winning record since 2005-2006.

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