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Free tax help available at Ripon public library

Free tax help available at Ripon public library

RIPON - The Stockton-San Joaquin County Public Library is partnering with the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program to bring free 2010 income tax assistance to our community. The VITA program offers free income tax help to families earning $54,000 or less a year.

Residents interested in getting free income tax assistance must schedule an appointment with Arnetta Lee-Gray, VITA coordinator, by calling her at (209) 483-4190.

Volunteer Income Tax Assistance will be offered at 5 p.m. in the Ripon Memorial Branch Library Community Room on the following days: Fridays: March 11, and March 25 and Saturdays: March 5, March 19, and April 2.

The library is located at 333 West Main Street in Ripon. The library is part of the Stockton-San Joaquin County Public Library. For more information, call (209) 937-8221 or visit the library's website.

Olive Oil Pantry to celebrate grand opening in Manteca March 4

Olive Oil Pantry to celebrate grand opening in Manteca March 4

MANTECA - The Olive Oil Pantry announced its Grand Opening on Friday, March 4th, and Saturday, March 5th at their Manteca location. Don't miss this great event with prizes, and more.

With the rapidly growing trend of olive oil stores popping up throughout the United States, Manteca is absolutely thrilled to finally have their very own retailer of Gourmet Olive Oils, Balsamic Vinegars and Specialty Oils in the town's newest little gem; The Olive Oil Pantry and Tasting Bar. This gorgeously decorated, Mediterranean themed, culinary haven is located at 1161 South Main Street, in the Safeway shopping center. Food-lovers and cooks will rejoice at the surprisingly unique experience that this brilliant store renders.

The Olive Oil Pantry's slogan is "Fresh Packed, Healthy, and Delicious" and they certainly live up to this claim.

Manteca's future highway divides homes now

MANTECA, CA - A major road project, scheduled to begin in the distant future, is already dividing the city of Manteca.

Homeowners and farmers in the rural area off Airport Way fear the city's plan to turn McKinley Avenue into a highway will literally run them over.

"The city will put us farmers out of business entirely if this is allowed," said Arnold Rothlin, an alfalfa and goat farmer who owns 40 acres off of Airport Way.

"The new plan cuts directly across our backyard," said Dolores Wackerly, who owns property off of Fig Avenue.

The city proposed three different paths the highway could take. The latest design extends McKinley Avenue past Woodward Avenue, through open farm land, and then cuts through land between Fig Avenue and Nile Avenue. It finally connects with Austin Road.

D-III Girls Section Playoffs: (1)Sacramento 77, (16)Sierra 32

SACRAMENTO, CA - The Sacramento Dragons defeated the Sierra Timberwolves 77-32 to open the first round of the D-I Sac-Joaquin Section playoffs Tuesday night.

The Dragons (23-5) are looking to reach the championship game after falling to St. Mary's last season. Sacramento will host Galt on Thursday.

D-II Girls Section playoffs: (1) St. Mary's 97, (16) Los Banos 21

STOCKTON, CA - The St. Mary's Rams defeated Los Banos Tigers 97-21 to open the 1st round of the Division Two Sac-Joaquin Section Playoffs.

The Rams (22-2) who won the D-III Section and State Title last season will host 8th seeded Florin on Thursday.

"Eat food. Mostly Plants. Not too much."

“Eat food. Mostly Plants. Not too much.”

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Michael Pollan, in his book, “In Defense of Food.”

Tracy power plant expansion underway

Tracy power plant expansion underway

TRACY - Congressman Jerry McNerney (CA-11) Tuesday marked the start of construction on the Tracy combined cycle power plant projec. The project will expand the current power plant in Tracy into a combined cycle power plant and is expected to create nearly 400 local jobs during construction and another 17 full-time jobs post-construction.

McNerney played a key role in advocating for the project’s approval by the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC). In doing so, he wrote a letter of support to the President of the CPUC. A member of his staff also spoke at multiple meetings hosted by the CPUC and read statements from the Congressman expressing his support for the project.

"The start of construction on the Tracy combined power plant is great news for our community," said McNerney. "This project that is expected to create nearly 400 construction jobs as well as 17 full-time jobs after construction.

Tracy police provide residential crime prevention tips

Tracy police provide residential crime prevention tips

TRACY - The Tracy Police Department wants to make sure residents have security tips for landscaping and lighting around your home, to help keep you and your family safe, and prevent crime.

Residential Landscaping 
Plant materials should be trimmed so they are not any higher than the sill of the window or they have no branches below 3-feet, to create a clearance space to allow you to have a clear line of sight. If you have any overgrown bushes or shrubs, they should be trimmed and removed. At a minimum, overgrown bushes should be trimmed 1-foot from any building structure wall and should be trimmed to a height of 3-feet. If trimming a bush to that height is not possible or would potentially kill the plant, it should be trimmed up 1-foot from the ground. 

Outdoor Lighting 
It is a well known fact that lighting is an instrumental part to reducing crime.

Almond Blossom Festival kicks off Thursday

Almond Blossom Festival kicks off Thursday

RIPON - The 49th Annual Ripon Almond Blossom Festival festivities kick off Thursday, Feb. 24 with $1.00 ride night starting at 5 p.m. at Mistlin Sports Park at the carnival.

The festival gates officially open on Friday, Feb. 25 starting at 12 p.m. where there will be tons of vendors, food, live entertainment and more importantly fun!

The whole weekend is full of festival activities including two breakfasts on Saturday, Ripon Grange #511 and VFW Pancake Breakfast along with the Almond Blossom Parade downtown starting at 11 a.m.

For more information on the 49th Annual Ripon Almond Blossom Festival contact the Ripon Chamber of Commerce at (209) 599-7519 or visit www.riponchamber.org.

"The only way to keep your health is to eat what you don’t want, drink what you don’t..."

“The only way to keep your health is to eat what you don’t want, drink what you don’t like, and do what you’d rather not.”

- Mark Twain (1835-1910); American writer and humorist. Twain loved California, especially Calaveras County and the Angels Camp area. He used to come from San Francisco to Stockton by steamboat, then hop on a wagon to get to his cabin near Angels Camp.