JT VFW SUNDAY BREAKFAST

The Joshua Tree Veterans of Foreign Wars Post will offer a Sunday breakfast of a pork chop special from 8 to 11. And don’t forget Taco Wednesday from 11 to 1. The Joshua Tree VFW post is located at 6402 Veterans Way in downtown JT.

JOSHUA TREE VFW POKER RUN

The Joshua Tree VFW is having a benefit event. Managing Editor Tami Roleff tells how to get in on the Poker Run…

Kickstands up! The Joshua Tree VFW Post 7264 will hold a Poker Run motorcycle ride, with proceeds benefiting military veterans. The ride will be held Saturday, September 28, starting at 10 a.m. The ride will be open to all riders and vehicles. The entry fee is $25, and includes lunch and a pin. Prizes will be awarded for the best and worst poker hands. For more information, call Jimmy Nutter at 760-366-2357. Reporting for Z107.7, this is managing editor Tami Roleff.

JEWISH NEW YEAR SERVICES IN DESERT HOT SPRINGS

Religious services for Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year, and for Yom Kippur, will be held in Desert Hot Springs, at Mission Lakes Country Club, sponsored by the Jewish Federation of Palm Springs and the Desert Area. Admission is free to Jewish residents of the Morongo Basin and Desert Hot Springs, and includes a break-the-fast meal in the facility’s dining room following the end of Yom Kippur. The times and dates are 7 PM on Wednesday September 4th and 10 AM on Thursday September 5th for Rosh Hashanah, and 7 PM on Friday September 13th and 10 AM on Saturday September 14th for Yom Kippur. Memorial Yizkor and concluding services start at 4 PM on Yom Kippur. RSVP is required if you want to attend services or the break-fast. To RSVP, or for more information, call Sandy Durham at Jewish Federation of Palm Springs and the Desert Area, 760-324-4737.

SPAMALOT THIS WEEKEND AT THEATRE 29

There are two more performances of the hilarious “Spamalot” this weekend at the nicely air-conditioned Theatre 29. Reporter Mike Lipsitz tells you how to get tickets …

Theatre 29 is one of the first community theaters in the country to be awarded amateur production rights to the hilarious, off-the-wall, anything-goes, irreverent musical, “Monty Python’s Spamalot.” The Broadway hit is now playing weekends through September 21 at the Twentynine Palms community theater. Award-winning director, Kathryn Ferguson, directs. “Monty Python’s SPAMALOT” is a farcical re-telling of the legendary tale of King Arthur and his chorus of crazy Knights on their quest for the Holy Grail. Get your tickets online at theatre29.org, or through the box office at 760-361-4151. Performances are Friday and Saturday evenings at 7 p.m., with Sunday matinees September 1 and 15. Tickets are $8 to $12. Parental guidance is suggested (not recommended for children under 12).

HI-DESERT WATER DISTRICT GETS FINANCIAL KUDOS

For the seventh year in a row, the Hi-Desert Water District received the highest form of recognition in the area of governmental accounting and financial reporting. The Government Finance Officers Association of the United States and Canada awarded the District its Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting for its comprehensive annual financial report.

FINAL ELECTION RESULTS

The San Bernardino County Registrar of Voters has posted final results for this week’s mail-in election. The Morongo Valley Community Services District had three seats up for grabs. The lead vote getter was Karen Lowe, with 336 votes. The race for the second and third seats was a nail biter, ultimately going to Kristina Brook and Gayl Swarat, with 287 and 280 votes, respectively. In fourth place was Jack Cunningham, only 4 votes behind Swarat with 276 votes. Further out of the running were Glen Shepherd and William Trowbridge.
The Twentynine Palms Water District race remains unchanged; incumbents Chancy Chambers, and Roger Shinaver were re-elected, along with newcomer Suzi Horn.

SKY DISCOVERY NIGHT

Celebrate Labor Day weekend with a spectacular show tonight. Reporter Taylor Thacker invites you to enjoy the night sky with Sky’s the Limit and Joshua Tree National Park…

Uncover your adventurous side as you explore the universe! Sky’s The Limit and Joshua Tree National Park will partner for a tour of the night sky on Saturday, August 31, starting at 7:30 pm. Following presentations by Park Ranger Carey Goldstein and Sky’s The Limit’s Ken Drummond about our solar system and galaxies, the public is invited to look through state-of-the-art telescopes at deep sky objects. Families and life-long learners of all ages are welcome at this free event at Sky’s The Limit Observatory and Nature Center, just north of the entrance to the Joshua Tree National Park at 9697 Utah Trail in Twentynine Palms. Everyone is strongly encouraged to bring snacks, water bottles, chairs, and a small flashlight and dress for unpredictable desert weather. For more information call 760-367-7222 or go online to www.skysthelimit29.org.

WILDFIRE HAZARDS

Despite the recent rains, the vegetation in southern California is extremely dry, and is almost explosive when ignited. The Mountain and Silver fires near Idyllwild, and the Rim fire near Yosemite, are perfect illustrations of how devastating fire can be, and how fast fire can spread and burn in drought conditions. CalFire reminds everyone that 90 percent of fires are started by human activity. Residents are urged to practice fire safety, especially near and in wildland areas. Lawn mowers, weedeaters, chain saws, grinders, welders, tractors, and trimmers can all spark a wildland fire. Learn how to safely use equipment while creating a defensible space around your home. Go to ReadyforWildfire.org for more information on how to protect your home from wildfires and other fire-safety tips.

OPENING GAMES FOR BOTH YUCCA VALLEY AND TWENTYNINE PALMS HIGH SCHOOLS

The Yucca Valley and Twentynine Palms High School football season opens tonight with games at home. The Yucca Valley Trojans football team plays a non-conference game against the Saints from Xavier Prep at 7 p.m. at Trojan Field. The Twentynine Palms Wildcat football team hosts the Cathedral City Lions in a scrimmage at Tom Nichol Field, also at 7 p.m. The Joshua Springs Lightning football team’s game against Discovery Prep tomorrow has been cancelled.

FREE MEAL IN TWENTYNINE PALMS SATURDAY

Breaking Bread Ministry will serve up free food and fellowship from 3 to 5 p.m. tomorrow at the Little Church of the Desert Community Hall in Twentynine Palms. Tomorrow Wally Currie and volunteers will serve a chef’s choice.

FREE BREAKFAST IN JOSHUA TREE TOMORROW

Joshua Tree Community United Methodist Church will provide a free community breakfast buffet Saturday morning from 9 to 10 a.m. Used clothing, shoes, coats and blankets are free to those in need as supplies last. The community is invited. The church is located at 6213 East Parkway.

BHAKTI FEST RETURNING TO JOSHUA TREE FOR 5TH YEAR

Bhakti Fest, the originator of yoga and kirtan festivals, is celebrating its fifth anniversary season September 5-8 at the Joshua Tree Retreat Center in Joshua Tree. In addition to hosting world-renowned kirtan and yoga leaders, Bhakti Fest will hold over 25 workshops. Managing editor Tami Roleff touches on the highlights of Bhakti Fest…

One workshop highlight will be Krishna Das’ “Heart of Devotion,” where he will host an intimate afternoon of stories and discussions on the Path, chanting and an opportunity for Q&A. Phil Goldberg and Joey Lugassy will present “The Beatles’ Yoga: Let it Be.” They will tell the story of how the Beatles changed the world spiritually as well as musically. Popular LA yogi and Ayurveda master Mas Vidal will present “The Spirit of Ayurveda” where he will teach what makes Ayurveda a spiritual healing system, how it works with the four forms of Yoga and Vedic Astrology. In addition to the workshops, Bhakti Fest offers non-stop kirtan performances and twelve hours of daily yoga classes. Tickets for Bhakti Fest 2013 are available at www.bhaktifest.com.

A BUSY JOSHUA TREE VFW KITHCEN

The Joshua Tree Veterans of Foreign Wars Post will offer an all-you-can-eat spaghetti dinner tonight, from 4:30 to 6:30, complete with salad and garlic bread, for only $5. Sunday breakfast will have a pork chop special from 8 to 11. And don’t forget Taco Wednesday from 11 to 1.

NO TRASH PICKUP MONDAY

Burrtec Waste and Recylcing Services will be closed on Labor Day. Waste and recycling collection will be delayed by one day for the remainder of the week.

MORONGO BASIN TRANSIT BUSES NOT RUNNING MONDAY

The Morongo Basin Transit Authority will NOT operate service on Monday, September 2, in observance of Labor Day and will resume its regularly scheduled service on Tuesday, September 3.

SPAMALOT THIS WEEKEND AT THEATRE 29, MATINEE SUNDAY

Three performances of the hilarious “Spamalot” this weekend at the nicely air-conditioned Theatre 29. Reporter Mike Lipsitz tells you how to get tickets for the Friday and Saturday night and Sunday Matinee shows…

Theatre 29 is one of the first community theaters in the country to be awarded amateur production rights to the hilarious, off-the-wall, anything-goes, irreverent musical, “Monty Python’s Spamalot.” The Broadway hit is now playing weekends through September 21 at the Twentynine Palms community theater. Award-winning director, Kathryn Ferguson, directs. “Monty Python’s SPAMALOT” is a farcical re-telling of the legendary tale of King Arthur and his chorus of crazy Knights on their quest for the Holy Grail. Get your tickets online at theatre29.org, or through the box office at 760-361-4151. Performances are Friday and Saturday evenings at 7 p.m., with Sunday matinees September 1 and 15. Tickets are $8 to $12. Parental guidance is suggested (not recommended for children under 12).

STRONG REACTION TO STORY ABOUT EUTHANIZING DESERT TORTOISES

News that hundreds of threatened desert tortoises face euthanasia with the pending closure of a refuge near Las Vegas has generated a storm of reaction that has government officials scrambling to find alternatives and fielding offers from people wishing to adopt the reptiles or make donations. The Associated Press reported this week that the Desert Tortoise Conservation Center, which has sheltered thousands of displaced tortoises for 23 years, is scheduled to close in 2014 as funding runs out. Early reports indicated the DTCC would be euthanizing about 50 percent of its 1,400 tortoises because they were sick. The story created an international public outcry; a spokeswoman for Fish and Wildlife said Thursday that while the 50 percent estimate of sick tortoises may be correct, not all of them will be killed, saying that some could go to research facilities. The Fish and Wildlife Service has received calls from hundreds of people who want to adopt the tortoises, but most can’t legally adopt them, as federal law bans their transportation across state lines. The center typically takes in about 1,000 tortoises a year, but will stop accepting new residents in the coming months.

MORONGO VALLEY CSD BOARD ELECTION STILL TOO CLOSE TO CALL

The San Bernardino County Registrar of Voters late yesterday released an updated tally of votes for the mail-in election concluded Tuesday. The totals include ballots received in the mail through Election Day. In the Morongo Valley Community Services District voting, with three seats up for grabs, Karen Lowe remains in the lead with about 22 percent of the vote. Kristina Brook, Gayl Swarat, and Jack Cunningham all remain contenders for the second and third open seats; each showing about 18 percent of the vote, too close to call with only a ten-vote spread between the three. Incumbent Glen Shepherd and William Trowbridge remain at the bottom with under 14 percent and 11 percent of the vote, respectively. Final certified election results are expected to be released at 1:00 this afternoon.

YUCCA VALLEY PLANNING COMMISSION, PART 3 OF 3, UNDERGROUNDING UTILITIES

The Yucca Valley Planning Commission discussed regulations for home-based businesses, wind energy, and undergrounding utilities at its meeting Tuesday night. In Part 1 of a 3-part report, Commissioners discussed whether it should allow residents to establish a home-based business to sell firearms. Yesterday in Part 2, the Commission discussed wind energy. Today, in Part 3, undergrounding utilities…

There was little comment by the Yucca Valley Planning Commission at its meeting Tuesday night about regulations concerning the undergrounding of utilities for new construction in the Town. While the Commissioners agreed it was more aesthetically pleasing if the power lines were placed underground, it’s not always feasible or economical, especially in places that are especially rocky. The Commissioners asked that the ordinance include the option for waiving the requirement for undergrounding utilities under special conditions.

BURGLAR SUSPECT ARRESTED WITH OVER $12K IN STOLEN SOLAR PANELS

A Landers man was arrested early Wednesday morning after he was found with methamphetamine and stolen property. According to a Sheriff’s report, a deputy was driving by the 5800 block of Ira Lane in Landers about 2:30 a.m. when he saw a rental moving truck parked in front of a residence with its interior lights on. The truck’s side panels and license plate had been recently painted over; checking inside the truck, the deputy saw drug paraphernalia consistent with possession for sales. The resident of the home, Robert Shelton, 32, a felon on parole, was arrested for possession of meth for sales, booked into the Morongo Basin Jail with a bail of $50,000 and on a parole hold. In addition, a search warrant was obtained. During the search, deputies found 28 solar panels worth $12,000 that had been reported stolen from a solar farm in the 3400 block of Morongo Road in Twentynine Palms in July. Robert Shelton was subsequently booked on an additional charge of receiving stolen property, with an additional bail of $25,000.