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ARMY VETERAN BIKING TO NORTHERN CALIFORNIA STOPS IN TWENTYNINE PALMS

A 55-year-old Army veteran stopped in Twentynine Palms this week on his way to a job in northern California. Bob Trout and his service dog, Maggie, left his home in March, in Tempe Arizona, and are traveling to Humboldt County by bicycle, with a little trailer for Maggie. Trout is riding with a sign on his back to raise awareness for businesses—big and small—to consider and hire military veterans. Seniors at the Twentynine Palms Senior Center bought lunch for Trout, and provided food for his dog as well. Reach Out Morongo Basin and the Twentynine Palms Ministerial Association arranged for a room for him at a local motel.


“WAIT UNTIL DARK” CONTINUES ITS RUN AT THEATRE 29

The Mystery Thriller “Wait Until Dark” is now playing at Theater 29 in Twentynine Palms. Directed by Ben Bees, “Wait Until Dark,” is a game of cat-and-mouse set in 1960s Greenwich Village, New York. A mysterious con man, impressively portrayed by Cyrus Short, lays a trap to ensnare Susy Hendrix, played by Lizzie Schmelling, who shines in her role as a blind woman. Short is aided by Theatre 29 veterans Scott Clinkscales and Andrew Whitaker, who play two small-time cons. Adam Redmon plays Susy’s husband, Sam. Amanda Mohn, 12, is Gloria, Susy’s young next door neighbor, who first frustrates, and then helps Susy. The curtain rises at 7 p.m. Saturday. Tickets are $8 to $10 and are available at Theatre 29 or by calling the box office at 760-361-4151.


DEADLINE EXTENDED FOR ART DONATIONS FOR REACH OUT MORONGO BASIN BENEFIT AUCTION

The deadline to make a donation for the Third Annual Art Action to benefit Reach Out Morongo Basin, set for May 2, has been extended. Reporter Diana Medley says even if you’re not an artist, you can still donate…

Donations are still being accepted for the Third Annual Art Auction benefit for Reach Out Morongo Basin. Not an artist? Donations of pre-owned artwork from the community are also welcome. Past auctions have featured jewelry, photography, paintings, etchings, metalwork, gourds, ceramics, textiles, and even furniture. There will be food and beverages, and live entertainment by local artist Kristina Quigley, the Luminators, and Nathan Rivera and Jessie Andra. The auction will be held from 2 to 7 p.m. May 2 at ArtFx and Furnishings in Old Town Yucca Valley. The deadline to donate to the auction is April 27. Bring donations to ArtFx, 55836 29 Palms Highway, Yucca Valley. For more information, call Reach Out at 760-361-1410, or ArtFx at 619-990-5683.

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YUCCA VALLEY MAN ARRESTED FOR STEALING CAR IN TWENTYNINE PALMS

A Yucca Valley man was arrested at gunpoint late Thursday night, accused of stealing a vehicle. According to a Sheriff’s report, the owner of the vehicle called deputies shortly before 8:30 p.m. Thursday to report his 1991 Honda had just been stolen from his home in the 73500 block of Desert Trail Drive in Twentynine Palms. The owner told deputies that the keys had been left in the vehicle while he went into the house for a few minutes, and the car had about a half tank of gas in it. A description of the stolen car was broadcast to other deputies, and the vehicle was located near La Contenta Road and Highway 62 about an hour later. Deputies made a felony traffic stop at gunpoint at Yucca Trail and Avalon Avenue in Yucca Valley and arrested Matthew Guerrero for investigation of grand theft auto. Deputies determined Guerrero was on parole for robbery. Matthew Guerrero was booked at the Morongo Basin Jail with his bail set at $50,000.


MAN ARRESTED FOR HAVING SHAVED CAR KEYS

A deputy checking up on a suspicious vehicle arrested a Desert Hot Springs man who was found with shaved car keys in his possession. According to a Sheriff’s report, deputies checked on a vehicle about 2:15 a.m. Wednesday morning near Park Boulevard and Desert Air in Joshua Tree. During the investigation, deputies found that Eric Mastas, 28, had shaved keys for several models of cars. Shaved keys are typically used to break into cars and start them. Eric Mastas was arrested on suspicion of being in possession of burglary tools, booked at the Morongo Basin Jail, cited, and released.


LANDERS MAN FOUND WITH STOLEN CHECKS

A deputy following up on a call concerning a possible stolen off-road vehicle arrested a Landers man when stolen checks were found hidden in the quad. According to a Sheriff’s report, a neighbor called to report a quad had been parked for three days near Border and Winters Roads in Landers Wednesday morning, and thought it might be stolen. When the deputy was searching the quad for a serial number, stolen checks were found under the quad’s seat. Footprints from the quad led to a nearby mailbox. After an investigation, Tolan Slentz, 34, of the 500 block of Becker Road, was arrested on suspicion of possession of stolen checks. Tolan Slentz was booked at the Morongo Basin Jail, cited, and released.


TEA AND FASHION SHOW IN YUCCA VALLEY SUNDAY

The St. Mary’s of the Valley Alter Guilds will hold their annual tea and fashion show tomorrow. Reporter Diana Medley tells you how to get tickets…

Put on your best party hat to attend St. Mary’s of the Valley Altar Guilds annual tea and fashion show April 25. The tea is open to all young and young at heart, with the theme “A Tea for All Generations.” Social hour begins at 11 a.m., with tea at noon, followed by a fashion show at 1 p.m. There’s a fabulous hat contest along with door prizes. The tea and fashion will be held at the parish hall, 7495 Church Street in Yucca Valley.  Tickets are $20 for adults and $10 for children 12 and under (who are greatly encouraged to attend with moms or grandmas). For more information, or to purchase tickets, contact Carol Boyer at 228-2714 or Terri Sanchez at 369-1502.


SKY’S THE LIMIT TO HOLD STAR PARTY TONIGHT

Sky’s the Limit will host a star party Saturday, April 25. The star party will start at the Twentynine Palms observatory about 8:30 p.m. and end about 12:30 a.m. The first quarter moon and Jupiter will be visible with great detail, along with several colorful double and multiple stars. Bring binoculars, telescopes, water, snacks, chairs, and dress for cold weather. For more information, call 760-367-7222. Sky’s The Limit Observatory and Nature Center is just north of the Twentynine Palms entrance to the Joshua Tree National Park at 9697 Utah Trail.


CONCERT AT YUCCA VALLEY CHURCH SUNDAY

Desert Hills Presbyterian Church will offer a free concert 4 p.m. Sunday, April 26. John Yonushonis will report on the delivery and acceptance of gifts and money to students at St. Michael’s School on the Navajo reservation at Window Rock, Arizona. The presentation will be followed by a concert featuring Native American flute, percussion, and vocals. The public is invited to attend. Desert Hills Presbyterian Church is located at 56750 Mountain View Trail in Yucca Valley.


SPUDTACULAR POTATO DINNER AT TWENTYNINE PALMS CHURCH SUNDAY

On Sunday, April 26, The United Methodist Church of Twentynine Palms will host a Spudtacular dinner. For a $5 donation, you get a baked potato dinner. Load up your potato with chili, real bacon bits, fresh grated cheese, butter, sour cream, broccoli, and onions. Fix a salad with a variety of dressings and choose from an assortment of drinks. The meal will be served from 5 to 6 p.m at the United Methodist Church at 6250 Mesquite Springs Road in Twentynine Palms.


LAST CHANCE TO ENTER YUCCA VALLEY HIGH SCHOOL GOLF TOURNAMENT

A golf tournament in Yucca Valley is for a good cause, raising funds that allows high school students to job shadow, participate in internships, and earn a scholarship worth $1,000. Tax-deductible contributions for sponsorships are available. Managing editor Tami Roleff has more information about the Yucca Valley High School Career Pathways Foundation Golf Tournament…

This week is your last chance to register for the ninth annual Yucca Valley High School Career Pathways Foundation Golf Tournament. Set for Friday, May 1, at Hawks Landing Golf Club in Yucca Valley, the tournament raises funds for student scholarships and internships. Registration is at 7 a.m. with an 8 a.m. shotgun start. Registration is $80 for individual or $320 for teams. First, second, and third prizes will be awarded in both championship and hacker divisions, in addition to special awards for a hole in one, the longest drive, and closest to the pin, plus raffles and drawings. For more information playing in the tournament, or sponsorship opportunities, contact Jeff Drozd at 760-365-3391, extension 3106, or 760-447-4015.


1.6 MILLION VISITORS SPENT $74 MILLION WHEN THEY VISITED JOSHUA TREE NATIONAL PARK LAST YEAR

Nearly 1.6 million visitors came to Joshua Tree National Park in 2014, and visitor numbers have been steadily increasing for the last 8 months, according to a report released yesterday by the National Park Service. While the percentage of increases in visitors in July and August 2014 were in the single digits compared to the same months in 2013, visitation increased a whopping 141 percent in October 2014—due to the fact that Joshua Tree National Park was closed for two weeks in 2013 because of the sequestration. But if the number of visitors to Joshua Tree National Park in October 2014 is compared to the number of visitors in October 2012, the increase is only 26 percent, which is in line with the 25 percent increase in September 2014, compared to 2013.
Since November 2014, the percentage of monthly visitors has increased every month at an astounding rate: between 31 percent and 67 percent, compared to the figures from the previous year.
And all those visitors bring money to spend. The park service estimates that in 2014, visitors to Joshua Tree National Park spent nearly $74 million in the gateway communities—with the most dollars being spent on lodging, followed closely by restaurants and bars, and then gas, admission and fees, souvenirs, local transportation, groceries, and camping fees. In addition, visitor spending indirectly contributes another $97 million dollars to the local economies, according to the NPS report.
And finally, the park service’s report states that visitor spending directly supports more than 1,000 jobs in the surrounding communities.
The link to the 2014 National Park Visitor Spending Effects can be found with this story at z1077fm.com.
http://www.nature.nps.gov/socialscience/docs/VSE2014_Final.pdf


PURSUIT ENDS UP IN HILLS OF NORTH JOSHUA TREE

A routine traffic stop led to a pursuit that ended in the hills in north Joshua Tree Thursday afternoon. About 3:18, Sheriff’s deputies Bruce Southworth and Erikson saw an older model Jeep Cherokee with an expired registration at the Circle K gas station in Joshua Tree. When the deputies attempted to stop the Jeep, the driver, identified as David Daniels, 37, of Yucca Valley fled. Daniels led nearly every Sheriff’s deputy in the Morongo Basin north on Sunburst Avenue, and then turned west into the Bartlett Mountains. Daniels abandoned his vehicle in the area of Bourbon Street and Sunny Vista Road and fled on foot. Deputies pursued Daniels on foot along the ridgeline, and called for assistance from the Sheriff’s helicopter, who lowered two deputies near Daniels and arrested him about 4 p.m. David Daniels, who had a warrant for his arrest for violating the terms of his probation, was arrested for investigation of felony evading, booked at the Morongo Basin Jail, with his bail set at $100,000.


HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS GET ORIENTATION AT COPPER MOUNTAIN COLLEGE

Area high school students recently visited Copper Mountain College. Reporter Mike Lipsitz says the students who participated will have an advantage when it comes time to register…
Copper Mountain College counselors and staff recently went to area high schools with an assessment test as part of CMC’s pre-registration process. Students from the Reaching and Investing in Student Education Program or RISE then went to CMC for an orientation where they received a two-semester education plan and tour of the campus.  The exercise will allow the RISE seniors the opportunity for a higher priority registration and a better chance of getting the classes they want in the Fall. The program is made possible through a joint effort between Copper Mountain College and Morongo Unified School District. Some 130 seniors from 29 Palms, Black Rock, and Yucca Valley high schools participated.  Open registration for Summer 2015 begins April 27 and Fall 2015 on May 5. For more information contact Admissions and Records at 760-366-3791 or apply online at cmccd.edu.


YUCCA VALLEY HIGH SCHOOL STUDENT AWARDED $500 SCHOLARSHIP

A Yucca Valley High School senior has been named the recipient of a $500 Gladys Carol Scholarship this year. Bryant Pahl of Yucca Valley was chosen to receive the scholarship while he pursues his STEM degree in Physics at UC Santa Barbara. Pahl was selected due to his academic excellence and for his strong sense of civic duty. Pahl will be recognized and receive a certificate of scholarship from The Gladys Carol Scholarship Program at the Yucca Valley High School Awards Night on May 20.


BABYSITTERS CITED FOR CHILD ENDANGERMENT

Two babysitters were cited for child endangerment Thursday. According to Sheriff officials, Rainnah Cruz and Hailey Kasney, both 19, were babysitting three children in the 5300 block of Mariposa Avenue in Twentynine Palms Thursday afternoon. The child’s father told deputies he received a message about 3 p.m. that his 4-year-old son was having a tantrum. When the father returned home about 8 p.m., his 9-year-old child told him that the babysitters had taped the 4-year-old hands behind his back and then tied him to a chair. The women denied taping his hands behind the child’s back, but Kasney told the deputy that the child’s hands were taped to a ball using clear packing tape. Rainnah Cruz and Hailey Kasney were cited for misdemeanor child endangerment, and released in the field.


“WAIT UNTIL DARK” PLAYING AT THEATRE 29 THIS WEEKEND

The thriller “Wait Until Dark” has audiences raving at Theatre 29. The classic mystery by Fredrick Knott continues its run with performances this weekend through May 9. Reporter Rebecca Havely shares some insight from the play’s director, Ben Bees…
“Wait Until Dark” at Theater 29 is directed by Ben Bees. This is Bees’ directorial debut at Theater 29 and he says of the play, “The details are what killed me. You don’t quite realize until you’re on the other side of the script, just how many details need to be addressed to make a show work.” The director made sure to surround himself with a production staff and crew that was good at catching all those details. The director also has high praise for his cast and crew, mentioning two lead actors in particular: Lizzy Schmelling, who plays the blind character, Susy Hendrix; and Cryus Short as the villainous, Harry Roat. “Wait Until Dark” takes place in the 1960’s in Greenwich Village, New York. A trio of ex con-men torment a young blind woman in their search for a doll filled with illegal drugs. It’s a suspense thriller that ends with a twist.
Tickets for “Wait Until Dark” are $8 to $12. To make reservations call 760-361-4151 or visit theatre 29.org.


FREE CONCERT AT YUCCA VALLEY CHURCH SUNDAY

Desert Hills Presbyterian Church will offer a free concert 4 p.m. Sunday, April 26. John Yonushonis will report on the delivery and acceptance of gifts and money to students at St. Michael’s School on the Navajo reservation at Window Rock, Arizona. The presentation will be followed by a concert featuring Native American flute, percussion, and vocals. The public is invited to attend. Desert Hills Presbyterian Church is located at 56750 Mountain View Trail in Yucca Valley.


STAR TWIRLERS SQUARE DANCE TONIGHT

The Star Twirlers Square Dance Club is hosting a plus-level square dance at the Yucca Valley Elks Lodge tonight. Bill (Tex) Gipson will be calling squares from 7:30 to 10:00 p.m. Lines will be cued from 7:00 to 7:30 and between tips. The lodge is located at 55946 Yucca Trail in Yucca Valley. For further information contact Dennis at 366-8626.


TEA AND FASHION SHOW IN YUCCA VALLEY SUNDAY

The St. Mary’s of the Valley Alter Guilds will hold their annual tea and fashion show tomorrow. Reporter Diana Medley tells you how to get tickets…
Put on your best party hat to attend St. Mary’s of the Valley Altar Guilds annual tea and fashion show April 25. The tea is open to all young and young at heart, with the theme “A Tea for All Generations.” Social hour begins at 11 a.m., with tea at noon, followed by a fashion show at 1 p.m. There’s a fabulous hat contest along with door prizes. The tea and fashion will be held at the parish hall, 7495 Church Street in Yucca Valley. Tickets are $20 for adults and $10 for children 12 and under (who are greatly encouraged to attend with moms or grandmas). For more information, or to purchase tickets, contact Carol Boyer at 228-2714 or Terri Sanchez at 369-1502.


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