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Village Chat: 12/01/2016

Village Chat

Julie Atwood receiving the FEMA award on behalf of HALTER from FEMA Deputy Director of Community Preparedness Timothy Manning.
In 2013, Julie Atwood saw a need and filled it by starting the HALTER program. HALTER stands for Horse and Livestock Team Emergency Response, and the idea is to provide funds and training to fire departments and other first responders for large animal rescue situations. Think earthquakes, fires, vehicle accidents, any time a horse or other large animal needs to be moved to safety.

This work was recognized, and in September, FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency) presented HALTER with an Individual and Community Preparedness Award in the “Awareness to Action” category, and an Honorable Mention as a “Community Preparedness Champion.”

Julie wrote, “As guests of FEMA and the Department of Homeland Security, we joined 19 other honorees from around the country in Washington, D.C., for two days of exciting, inspiring activities. We also shared the spotlight with the six groups receiving the “Building Resilience with Diverse Communities” Awards, which recognize the enormous contributions of faith-based organizations. The interchange between our groups was powerful and eye-opening.”

The award ceremonies took place in the White House, where Julie accepted the HALTER award from FEMA Deputy Director of Community Preparedness, Timothy Manning. Afterward they had several Q&A panels and round-table sessions, and FEMA leaders plied them with questions about their programs and initiatives, methods, and ideas. Best takeaway message? Julie says, “If you STAY ready, you never have to GET ready!”

From left: Maggie Simpson, Allie Simpson, Elizabeth Peters, Romy Simpson and Brett Simpson at the Head of the Charles.
Also on the east coast, a number of Kenwood girls (OK, now they are young women), had a reunion in Boston in October. Four of the six Simpson sisters, who used to live at the end of Randolph Avenue with their little brother Andrew, are now all over the map. Brett graduated from Princeton with honors and won the Henley Regatta. Allie has a fellowship, receiving her Masters in Music at Yale. Romy is studying economics and engineering at the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, while rowing in their varsity 8, and Maggie owns a tutoring company based in Berkeley, helping students make the grades to get into her alma mater, U.C. Berkeley. Maggie is also a champion rower, and these Simpsons had converged on Boston for the Head of the Charles race, and to spectate with Elizabeth Peters. Elizabeth (full disclosure, my daughter who is now 24) lives in Somerville and is working on a Masters in Public Health at Harvard. So there you have it - all of them Kenwood School graduates!

Max Kruzic climbs the Salathe Wall of El Capitan. This photo was taken by Max’ climbing partner, Nat Goodby. Max isn’t wearing his helmet because he just came out of a crack and his head wouldn’t fit with it on.
Meanwhile back in California, Max Kruzic was hanging around (literally) on El Capitan in Yosemite. Max grew up in Kenwood and has recently moved to Bishop, where he's a project geologist and obviously a very experienced climber. In October, he and his climbing partner Nat Goodby completed the Salathe Wall, which took them four days.

Max writes, “The Salathe Wall is 3,000 feet and 35 pitches (rope lengths). I had previously attempted El Cap five different times on several routes but was shut down due to various complications (mostly weather). Earlier this year I was stormed off when the wall turned to a waterfall and had substantial rock fall from the waterway above. Two weeks later I returned and was turned around on a solo attempt of the Zodiac route on the southeast face, from heat related illness in 100+ degrees. The weather can change drastically and knowing when to turn around is important. On our successful climb of the Salathe in early October we had great weather. Salathe has many infamous, wide cracks which take a while to climb. The first two days went smooth. The third day we encountered difficult conditions on the headwall section of the route where quite a bit of gear had previously ripped out, leaving broken metal in the cracks. We climbed all night through this section and slept 300 feet from the top. We reached the top the next morning and rappelled down.” All I can say is, “wow!”

A couple of weeks ago, Marc Woodworth sent us this picture of a fox that was sunning itself in a neighbor's driveway on Cypress Avenue. The fox wasn't sick or anything, just hanging out for a little while. He soon got up and trotted away. Thanks, Marc!

Alicia Parks leads a yoga class on Wednesday mornings at St. Patrick's Church, and she wants to let people know that she's offering a free class for new clients, as a holiday gift. The class is 9:30-10:30 a.m. in Stevenson Hall. Check it out!

That's all I have room for this week. Thanks to everyone who sent in news and pictures. It's easy to do. Just email, or call 833-5155 and chat me up! - AQP


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Community Calendar

VOMWD hazard mitigation virtual meeting
Sugarloaf Trail Crew
SDC community outreach
Charmian Kittredge London biography book release
GE Fair Quilt drawing