JOSHUA TREE WOMAN CONVICTED IN YUCCA VALLEY BANK ROBBERY

A 61-year-old Joshua Tree woman pleaded guilty last week to robbing a bank in January. Darcy Landrum was in court last Tuesday for a pre-preliminary conference when she changed her plea to guilty to robbing US Bank in Yucca Valley three weeks ago. Judge Rodney Cortez sentenced her to two years in state prison in Frontera. According to Sheriff’s Detective Corey Emon, Landrum walked into the bank shortly before 10 a.m. January 27 and handed the teller a note that said, “This is a robbery.” Landrum then told the teller to give her the money, not to press the button, and to not give her a dye pack or she would shoot her. Following up on tips, Emon found Landrum the next day at a bus stop in front of Wal-Mart; when the detective confronted her, Landrum asked if he was there about her boyfriend, Harold Ghaemmaghami, who pleaded guilty in October to robbing a bank in La Quinta. During the investigation, Sheriff’s detectives found in Landrum’s possession money that was traced back to the bank, as well as the clothing she was seen wearing during the robbery.

DONNA MUNOZ TAPPED FOR MORONGO CALLEY CSD GENERAL MANAGER

Last week’s announcement that Donna Munoz, Morongo Basin’s Field Rep to County Supervisor James Ramos, was stepping down makes sense with today’s news that Munoz has been offered the position of General Manager for the Morongo Valley Community Services District. Munoz was at the CSD training with outgoing General Manager, Rick Lebel, every day last week.  If approved, Munoz will work under the same terms under which Lebel was hired two years ago. Outgoing Lebel came out of retirement to run the CSD after the sudden departure of Meg Foley. The CSD board is expected to approve Munoz’s contract at the regular monthly meeting Wednesday night. Munoz’s contract with the County Supervisor ended last Tuesday, February 11. She is expected to officially start as general manager this Thursday.

LEARN HOW TO GROW FOOD TREES IN OUR DESERT

Would you like to grow your own food trees in a desert-friendly way? Dan Stork tells about an upcoming workshop where you can learn how…

The Transition Joshua Tree Permaculture Project Team will present a free all-day workshop on Planting Food Trees in Arid Lands on Sunday, February 23. Participants will learn the basic ethics of permaculture, arid land techniques for planting food trees and medicinal plants hydrated from simple water harvesting earthworks, and a water-harvesting technique that slows, spreads, and sinks water run-off. Pre-registration is required. Email or call Jill Giegerich at transitionjoshuatree@gmail.com, or call her at 310-795-6991. The location is a private residence in Joshua Tree, whose details will be provided upon registration. For more information go to transitionjoshuatree.org, or email transitionjoshuatree@gmail.com.

NEW STATE-OF-THE-ART MESS HALL TO BE DEDICATED ON THE MARINE BASE

The Marine Corps Air-Ground Combat Center will dedicate a state-of-the-art mess hall Tuesday in honor of a Twentynine Palms Marine who was the first Marine to receive the Medal of Honor for his heroic actions during the Iraq War. Cpl. Jason L. Dunham is also the first Marine to receive the honor since the Vietnam War. On April 14, 2004, Corporal Dunham was on a reconnaissance mission with his squad from 3rd Battalion, 7th Marines, Regimental Combat Team-7, from Twentynine Palms, when they encountered insurgents in Karabilah. Dunham was in hand-to-hand combat with an insurgent when he saw the insurgent release a grenade. Corporal Dunham threw himself on top of the grenade to save his fellow Marines. Dunham was severely wounded, and died eight days later. Corporal Dunham also has an Arleigh-Burke class guided missile destroyer naval ship named after him, the USS Jason Dunham.

MOTORCYCLE RIDE SATURDAY BENEFITS HOMELESS VETERANS

Attention motorcycle riders, Vets Cruzin’ for a cause will be taking donations to Martha’s Kitchen in Indio with a 30 percent veteran population and come back to Yucca Valley to give out more donations to MB Haven this Saturday, the 22.  At the end of the ride, they will have the 180 Ministries band “Sunshine on Wheels” playing, serving food and local vendors. The starting location is Razor Fades, 3733   Adobe Road, Twentynine Palms, stopping to pick up more riders at Hi-Desert Motorcycle Supply in Yucca Valley, then to Palm Springs Harley to pick up Sword of the Lord Ministries, then to Martha’s Kitchen in Indio. Return route is after refuel from Martha’s Kitchen to Desert Motorcycle Supply arriving at about 1:30 p.m. Vets Cruzin’ for a Cause is a grass-roots organization raising awareness and assistance for homeless veterans. For information, call President Kevin Fish at 760-368-8715.

ST. JOSEPH’S PLAYERS “ON GOLDEN POND” OPENS FRIDAY

The Yucca Valley Theater Company, St. Joseph’s Players, will open the show “On Golden Pond” this Friday to run Saturday and Sunday thought March 16. Reporter Mike Lipsitz tells you how to get tickets…

The St. Joseph’s Players production of the classic comedy/drama “On Golden Pond,” opens Friday, February 21, in the Parish Hall at the St. Joseph of Arimathea Church at Onaga Trail and Church   Street. “On Golden Pond” opened on Broadway in 1979 and has since become an American theatrical classic. Rebecca Havely directs. The opening night gala is sold out. Tickets are available for regular performances which are Saturdays at 7 p.m. and Sundays at 2 p.m. from February 22 to March 16. Tickets are $10 or $8 for military, students and seniors (55+), available at The Silk Purse in Twentynine Palms and Wind Walkers in Joshua Tree, as well as from church and cast members. To reserve your seats, call 760-365-7133; leave your name and phone number; you will receive a call back to complete your reservation.

DESERT QUILT GUILD SHOW SET FOR MARCH 7TH AND 8TH IN PALM SPRINGS

“Quilting Seasons” is the theme for this year’s Desert Guilds’ Quilt Show to be held in Palm Springs March 7 and 8. The show will feature 150 quilts made by members of three quilt guilds, including Cactus Sewables in Yucca Valley, Coachella Valley, and Pass Patchers, from the Banning/Beaumont area. Other highlights include a certified quilt appraiser, a quilt raffle, a mini quilt exhibit, and merchants and vendors. The quilt show is a fundraiser for the three quilt guilds, who make donations to various community organizations. Admission to the quilt show is $7 with free parking. The quilt show will be held at the Palm Springs Pavilion, 401 S. Pavilion Way. For more information, call Susan Amundsen, 907-229-6034.

SEMINAR ON DEATH AND DYING AT TWENTYNINE PALMS EPISCOPAL CHURCH

A seminar on death and dying, and how to prepare for it, is being sponsored by the Desert Cluster Baptismal Ministry Team. Some of the topics to be discussed will be catastrophic and chronic illness; making last wishes known; the process of dying; legal considerations, and planning your funeral. The seminar will be held from 9 to noon on Saturday, February 22, at St. Martin in the Field Episcopal Church, 72348 Larrea Drive in Twentynine Palms. For more information, or to reserve a seat, call Ken at 760-361-4838, or email kenandpeggy3@msn.com.

DESSERT SOIREE TO AUCTION 3-DAY WINE COUNTRY VACATION

A three-day vacation package to California’s wine county in Sonoma is one of the items to be auctioned during the Dessert Soiree to benefit the Hi-Desert Boys and Girls Club. Managing editor Tami Roleff gets out her auction paddle…

The wine country vacation package includes airfare from LAX, three days and two week nights at Camellia Inn, a rental car, winery tour, and kayaking on the Russian River. Other items in the auction include artwork, crystal, a 48-inch flat screen TV, date night packages, golf packages, and other get-aways, including to Lake Tahoe. At the end of the auction, is the ever-popular game, “Deal or No Deal,” where one lucky contestant will try to win a $1,000 in cash. The Desert Soirée and Auction is set for 7 p.m. Saturday, February 22, at the Helen Gray Center in Joshua Tree. Buy tickets in advance from Tease Shirts, Boys and Girls Club, or Gubler Orchids, For more information, you can contact Chris Gubler 760-401-9001.

TWENTYNINE PALMS HIGH SCHOOL BOYS’ BASKETBALL WINS SQUEAKER AGAINT BIG BEAR

The Twentynine Palms High School boys’ varsity Wildcat basketball team finished their regular De Anza league season play Friday night against the Big Bear Bears in Wildcat Gym, and it was an exciting one! Coach Michael Schneider said the game was evenly matched through the first four periods, and went into three overtimes. The Wildcats finally prevailed with a 70-69 point victory. The game was highlighted with a last second buzzer-beater in the second overtime by Wildcat sophomore, Kyle Hope, that was waved off, and great team free-throws for the ’Cats 17-22. Leading scorers were: senior Alex Chavez with 18 points; senior Elijah Grubbs with 15
points; sophomore, Kyle Hope with 13 points. The next game will be a CIF division 4AA playoff game hosted by the Wildcats Wednesday night at 7:00. It will be against the giant, 5th-seeded J Serra Lions out of San Juan Capistrano. They are led by two players that are 6’-11” and 6’-9”.

TWENTYNINE PALMS HIGH SCHOOL GIRLS BASKETBALL UNDEFEATED IN LEAGUE AFTER BIG BEAR WIN

The Twentynine Palms High School girls’ basketball team finished their regular season Friday at home against Big Bear. The ‘Cats defeated the Bears 73-to-34, to finish league play at 10-and-0, undefeated for the third consecutive year. The program has now won the league championship for seven straight years. Coach Tim Stanford says there will be a home playoff game for the girls this Thursday. Four girls contributed double figures in scoring on the night: Tatiyanna Mackall had 13 points, Nokomis Cabrera had 12 points, Tusia Brown and Makya Bullion had 10 points each, and Gabby Salcido dropped in nine points.