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Glen Ellen Telegram

Glen Ellen Telegram

By Shannon Lee

Away they go

Take a moment to think about the past four years. We have all been through so much, even before COVID- 19. Now imagine being a high schooler during the past four years. Yikes. These kids have been through fire trauma, evacuations, school closures due to air quality and power shut offs, and then a global pandemic and a transition to quarantine and virtual school. They are wrapping it up and trying their hardest to finish strong. Graduation for Sonoma Valley High School is on June 4, in person and streamed live. And then watch out everyone, these kids are coming out ready to kick ass and take names.

I’ve asked around to find out what some of our Dunbar Elementary School alumni who are Class of 2021 are planning to do next. I didn’t hear back from everyone — if anyone wants to add in, please email me and we’ll put it in next time.

In no particular order: Sara Galindo will be attending the Santa Rosa Junior College (SRJC) and working toward a real estate license. Alonso Robles is going to SRJC and may look into trade school. Robert Greenslade will be leaving for UC Santa Barbara to study Environmental Business. Aurora Claros will attend Cal State University Fullerton, majoring in Computer Science. Elias Casolla is enrolling at St. Mary’s College in the Kinesiology/Sports Science program. Lily Hamilton will be attending SRJC and plans to study Video Game Design. Isabella Magnani is leaving for the University of Hawaii at Manoa and plans to study Marine Biology. Nasir Aymaan Saadiq is graduating from New Horizons and then heading to the SRJC. He plans to transfer to a four-year university and pursue a degree in Environmental Science or Biology. Laura Avila Vega is enrolling in the Chemistry program at Cal State University at Los Angeles. Stephen O’Neil is going to stay local and take classes at SRJC, but intends to transfer to a four-year university to study Bioengineering and Marine Biology. Emma Pressley will be joining her sister at Sonoma State University, where she will be studying Earth Sciences. Holly Lee will be moving with her sister Katie to Santa Cruz and plans to work and attend Cabrillo Community College. Alex Farrow is enrolling in the Biology program at UC Berkeley. Lindsey Cullen will be studying Marine Biology at University of California Davis. Amelia Lee will be moving north to Western Washington University, where she will study Interdisciplinary and Global Environmental Sciences. Lily Barbagelata will be attending UC Berkeley to study Math. Kabir Pandeya will attend SRJC and then transfer to a bachelors progroam. Look out world … here they come!

MorenewsfromDunbaralumni: Hayden Pearce is graduating Summa Cum Laude from San Diego State University with a B.A. in Political Science, minors in Women’s Studies and Leadership, and a certificate in Human Rights. Shelby Decker is graduating from UC Los Angeles as a Public Affairs major with a minor in Environmental Systems and Society. Shelby is planning on taking a small (hard-earned) break before hopefully finding work in the environmental policy or nonprofit field.


Brace yourselves — this is not good news. Our average annual rainfall is about 35 inches. Last year at our house we logged 24 inches, which was not good. And this year? Less than 14 inches. It’s bad. Large portions of Sonoma County have recently been designated as ‘exceptional’ drought. I’m starting to think that we will need a whole new cadre of adjectives to describe the state we are in.

In response to the lack of rain and the fact that we have now passed out of our “rainy” time of year, the Water Advisory Committee (WAC) to the Sonoma County Water Agency (Sonoma Water), which includes Valley of the Moon Water District and seven other utilities in Sonoma and Marin Counties, has asked users to voluntarily reduce water use by 20 percent due to the drought. Collectively, the eight utilities are known as the Sonoma Marin Water Saving Partnership.

“We request all water users of the Sonoma-Marin Saving Water Partnership to voluntarily reduce water use by 20 percent immediately due to the drought,” said Susan Harvey, chair of the WAC and a Cotati City Council Member. “Twenty percent [reduction] can be achieved by implementing some quick water- saving tips, such as reducing outdoor water use and fixing leaks. We encourage our community to contact their water provider to learn more about water-saving rebate programs and tips.”

The Partnership receives most of its water from the Russian River watershed, which is currently experiencing drought conditions. Due to critically low rainfall over the last two years, water storage levels are at historic lows in both Lake Mendocino and Lake Sonoma. Through collective care and caution, our efforts at conservation now will make a great deal of difference later in the summer and into the fall. The call to act is voluntary now, but is very likely to transition to mandatory water saving regulations.

The Partnership’s website (www. is a resource for community members seeking water-saving tips. Daily drought updates are available online at

The Buzz from Around the Bend

Interested in the water topic? Don’t miss the next Glen Ellen Forum meeting on Monday, June 7, at 6:30 p.m. via Zoom. The agenda will include folks from the Sonoma County Water Agency as well as from the Eldridge Cemetery Memorial Committee, who will present an “introduction and overview of the project including renditions of the preliminary memorial design.” You can register to receive the meeting link at Not on the Forum email list? Send a message to [email protected]

Planning for the Glen Ellen Village Fair 2021 is well under way and all are invited to join the volunteer team. The next monthly meeting is June 14 at 6:30 p.m. The meeting will likely be on Zoom; please email [email protected] for information and inquiries. The committee says it is looking “really good” that we’ll be cleared to have the fair in October, but they are still trying to get ducks in a row and determine the parameters/costs that might be a bit different from life pre-COVID. The committee may call upon the community for direct donations toward the fair re-launch. Stay tuned.

Have you heard the music wafting up from the Jack London Saloon courtyard? Acoustic Thursdays is happening on the patio. Dan Martin will perform Thursday, June 3, from 6 – 8 p.m. So nice to see everyone beginning to gather again.

As always, if you have any Glen Ellen-related news to announce, please email [email protected] com or call 996-3352.