The Kenwood Press
News: 09/01/2015

Village Chat

Ann Q. Peters

A Tibetan blessing for the harvest at Deerfield Ranch Winery.
Four monks of the Drepung Loseling Monastery visited Deerfield Ranch Winery on Aug. 25 to bless the harvest, those associated with the winery, and the Kenwood community. Kenwood resident and public relations consultant Lisa Pidge invited the monks. One of her clients is Tibetan master thangka (Tibetan Buddhist painting) artist Tashi Dhargyai, who works to preserve Tibetan art through his Preserve Tibetan Arts organization. Twice a year, Tashi’s gallery in Sebastopol sponsors the monks of Drepung Loseling Monastery and their Mystical Arts of Tibet Program. Money raised goes to sustain the 2,500 monks at the monastery in Southern India.

At Deerfield, the monks offered special prayers and pujas (expressions of honor and devotion), including green Tara for health and healing, Mahakala for protection and removal of obstacles, Jang-wa Puja for the transition of a dead person, Cha-sum cake offering for removing hindrances, and consecrations and blessings for new homes, places of business or new jobs. Not your typical harvest day in the vineyards, but a lovely moment to reflect and take a spiritual break from a hectic world.

Here’s a mystery for you. Steve Berg of the Bennett Valley Cemetery Association gave us a call the other day, trying to track down a missing headstone. The small cemetery is near Galvin Park in Santa Rosa, and is a Sonoma County Historical Landmark.

Missing for many years is the tombstone of Nancy A. Badger (part of the family after whom Badger Road in Santa Rosa is named), who passed away at age 11 in 1856. Steve had been perusing regarding the Badger family when he ran across a post from 2013 from someone who identified themselves as being from Kenwood, with the screen name of “jmcmahon53.” This person posted a picture of Nancy Badger’s tombstone and said it was found on his Kenwood property when it was purchased in 1994. Unfortunately, the screen name is no longer in use, so Berg has been unable to contact whoever it was through the website. That led him to search for any “jmc-mahon” in the area, which prompted him to call our office. Further calls to a few local McMahons in the Kenwood phone book have not gotten Berg any closer to locating the headstone. The marker is 20 inches tall with a rounded top and weighs about 40-50 pounds. The inscription reads in part: “Nancy A, Daughter of J.J. and L.A. Badger, Died Nov. 14, 1856, Aged 11 Y’s 4 D’s”. There is a Badger family plot at the Bennett Valley Cemetery, so if anyone has any information on how to reunite Nancy’s marker with the rest of her family, contact Steve Berg at 528-9684, or

On Sept. 6, Robert Young, choir director at St. Patrick’s Church, will give a piano recital comparing pieces by American jazzman Bix Beiderbecke and French impressionist Claude Debussy. Strange bedfellows indeed! Robert will explain what they shared musically. There is no charge, and the acoustics are great, so make sure to attend this live performance by a talented and versatile musician. The church is located at 9000 Sonoma Highway, across from the Kenwood Fire House.

Nick and Rosemarie Ramponi are proud to relate the news that their daughter Emma (age 20) just got hired as a Sheriff for Santa Cruz County, and will start Academy on Oct. 1. Congratulations, Emma!

Lloyd Wagner celebrated his 90th birthday on Aug. 23 with his family at his Kenwood home of 51 years. His daughter Cathy Fletcher related one of Lloyd’s favorite Kenwood memories. It was a day in 1936 when his parents sent 11-year-old Lloyd and his cousin from Alameda to Kenwood. They started off at the Fruitvale Station in Oakland, traveling by train to the Oakland Mall, where they jumped on a ferry boat to the San Francisco Ferry Building. They then caught a street car to Fisherman’s Wharf, where they boarded a ferry boat to Sausalito. Then they really experienced what this trip was all about – riding the last train to Kenwood! They arrived after dark and were picked up at the Kenwood Depot by their Aunt, Emma Giffin. She drove them to her home on Warm Springs Road. It was a long day, but a memorable one. Happy Birthday, Lloyd!
Lloyd Wagner celebrates his 90th Birthday at home in Kenwood.

Also celebrating a birthday on Aug. 23 was Bonnie Garety, who turned 95. Happy Birthday, Bonnie! Bonnie wrote a humor column for this paper some years ago. She’s the Erma Bombeck of Oakmont.

Laura Benward will be singing the National Anthem at the San Francisco Giants game on Sept. 12. Be sure to listen in on the radio that day. Or better yet, go to the game!

Barbara Lowell and Dennis Cronin enjoyed a trip to Prague in July, followed by an eight-day river cruise down the Danube from Regensberg, Germany, to Vienna. They had two nights at the Imperial Hotel in Vienna before flying home, and Dennis said it was a wonderful trip.
Barbara Lowell and Dennis Cronin reading the Kenwood Press in the lobby of the Imperial Hotel in Vienna, Austria

Fawn Rescue wants your stuff! Wildlife Fawn Rescue will be having an Open House and “Good Stuff” sale on Oct. 17 at the Kenwood Depot, and they are looking for donations for their sale. If you have items to donate (no large furniture or clothing, please) call Star Dewar at 481-2819.

Well, that’s all for now. Thank you to everyone who sent in their news and photos for Village Chat. You can do it, too! Just email, or call 833-5155 and chat me up! – AQP