Kenwood Press

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Letters to the Editor: 09/01/2015

Letters to the Editor

Public are the losers in Funky Friday restriction

Dear Editor,

Bravo to Jay Gamel for his outstanding reporting (“Black Funky Friday”) in the Aug. 15 issue of the Kenwood Press! This tragicomedy can be summed up as follows: Some retired Park Rangers noticed people at Funky Friday enjoying Sugar Loaf Ridge State Park while doing something other than foraging in the trash cans of the park’s bears. So they dropped a dime to the state park regional director who expressed “shock, SHOCK” that there was fun going on up there.

While the state has slashed support to California’s parks, threatening the closure of several, and former park officials were hiding funds intended for the parks, volunteers such as those at Team Sugarloaf have stepped in to keep Sugarloaf Ridge State Park running. Two other volunteers – Linda Pavlak and Bill Myers – have gone further, establishing the “Funky Friday” concert series which has been an overwhelming success in the community and raised over $30,000 for park use.

But that’s just too much for the bureaucrats in Sacramento and their friends in the California State Park Rangers Association. OMG, they declare: “A Project Evaluation Form was never filled out.” You know, the form that calls for “extensive reviews” by up to eight different agencies that can take months to complete. We can’t have that. So now only 125 of us may enjoy music and a sunset on Friday evenings in one of the parks we thought belonged to all Californians.

The hugely popular Funky Friday concert series does not implicate any environmental, archaeological or public safety concerns. Instead, as Jay Gamel quite rightly put it: It’s an ongoing struggle over who is going to dominate management of the park system. And in that struggle, all of us are going to lose.

Mark A. Randol

Take the signs down

Dear Editor,

My wife and I have lived in Kenwood for the past 25 years, drawn here by the natural and relatively untouched scenic beauty of the Sonoma Valley. I had an office in the Kenwood Village for a number of years which at the time included other small businesses and a restaurant.

There has been quite a change that has evolved over the last several years with a number of small tasting rooms opening not only in the Village but along Highway 12 in Kenwood, which has attracted a lot of visitors to the area.

Kenwood is located on Highway 12, a California state-designated scenic highway, which prevents certain signage from detracting from the beauty of the area. While sandwich board signs located on the edge of Highway 12 are not prohibited, they detract from the beauty of the area.

As a resident of Kenwood, I would like to see the right thing done and the signs removed adjacent to Highway 12.

John Rector

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