Briefs: Regional Special Education Learning Center open house and more

Regional Special Education Learning Center open house

HOLLISTER – The Community Advisory Committee, a support group for parents of children with special needs, will host an open house of the Regional Special Education Learning Center, at 1011 Line St., Ste. 12, from 4 to 6:30 p.m. The open house will offer a chance to tour classrooms and facilities, and mingle with other parents and members of the community. Program specialists will be available to provide general information regarding the Low Incidence Program.

    Snacks and refreshments will be served. RSVP is requested.

    Details: For more information or to RSVP, call Frances at 637-5393 ext. 112.

Hollister Hills offers educational opportunities

HOLLISTER – The interpretation department at Hollister Hills State Vehicular Recreation Area is gearing up to provide a variety of educational opportunities through the parks curriculum-based education program and its Junior Off-Highway Ranger adventure. The free programs offer educational, inspirational and recreational opportunities. The program will expose students to the various topics concerning the environment, cultural preservation, OHV safety and OHV recreational opportunities.

    In addition to the outdoor program, Hollister Hills SVRA staff members will be holding a Junior Off-Highway Ranger program. The free program will provide participants the opportunities to reinforce safe riding habits, improve and enhance their skills and riding etiquette while learning about the importance of protecting natural and cultural resources.

    Details: Those interested in scheduling a class field trip or participating in a Junior Off-Highway Ranger Program can call 636-2065 or email [email protected]

Business After Hours meeting

HOLLISTER – The San Benito County Chamber of Commerce & Visitor’s Bureau is holding its Business After Hours meeting at the Hughs Vintage Aircraft Museum, at 90 Skylane Drive, in Hollister. Hollister Soaring Center will host the meeting from 5:30 to 7 p.m.

    Details: 637-5315.

Union offers scholarships

HOLLISTER – The International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 234 is offering $500 scholarships to three high school graduates, one each from San Benito, Monterey and Santa Cruz counties. The scholarship is for students who will graduate in the current school year.

    To apply, a student must have at least one present or past member of any union in his or her immediate family and type a 500-word essay on one of three topics related to labor and union movements. The application deadline is March 9.

    Details: or Andy at (831) 594-7471.

Si, Se Puede! seeks activity leaders

HOLLISTER – Si, Se Puede! is seeking site activity leaders through the AmeriCorps program. The activity leaders assist with homework, reading, math and other learning activities at the after school program.

    Candidates must be at least 18 years of age, be a U.S. citizen or legal resident, be a college student, be organized, a resource builder and a self-started, interested in helping children from a low-income community and able to commit to a six-month term of service. The appointment is for April through Sept.

    The position pays a living allowance of $2,590 paid out through the six months and an educational award of $1,175 upon completion of the term.

    Details: Elise Hasty, 637-9097 or [email protected] or

Gav honor society hosts raffle

HOLLISTER – Rho Alpha Mu, the honor society at Gavilan College, is having a fundraiser raffle drawing on March 15. Tickets for the raffle will be on sale by members for only $1 each. The society depends on businesses and individuals in the community for donations to subsidize scholarships and club activities. If you are interested in purchasing tickets or donating, contact advisor Jennifer Nari at 848-4897.

    Prizes include gift baskets and gift certificates from: Johnson Lumber/Ace Hardware on Tennant Avenue in Morgan Hill, Supercuts and Zoom Photo in Hollister, and Home Depot in Gilroy. Other donators include: Starbucks, Papa Murphy’s Pizza, Neighborhood Pizza, Subway, Suds Car Wash and Fancy Nails in Hollister, Staples, and Bagelz in Gilroy.

    Rho Alpha Mu promotes academic excellence and service to our community. Members are required to maintain a 3.0 GPA and perform 20 hours of community service per semester.

Local blood drive

HOLLISTER – There will be an American Red Cross blood drive held March 15, from 1 to 6 p.m., at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1670 Cienega Road. To make an appointment, use the sponsor code HOLLISTER.

    Details: 1-800-RED-CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or

LULAC raises money with enchiladas

HOLLISTER – San Benito LULAC youth will be selling enchiladas to raise money for members to travel to the National LULAC Youth Leadership Convention in June, at Disney World, in Orlando, Florida. Enchilada sales will be held March 17. Orders must be placed in advance. The cheese-corn tortilla enchiladas are $14 per dozen.

    Details: Vince Luna at 673-1977, Sami Salazar Weaver at 408-706-8485, Julio Salazar at 245-9608 or Francisco Lezama at 537-8332.

Girl Scouts begin cookie sales

HOLLISTER – 2012 Girl Scout Cookie Sales are under way. San Benito County Girl Scouts will be selling Girl Scout cookies Friday afternoon thru Sunday weekly from booth locations now through March 18th.

    Booth locations include: Nob Hill Foods, Papa Murphy’s Pizza, Safeway, Save Mart, Santa Barbara Bank & Trust on Tres Pinos Rd., as well as at Mansmith’s BBQ Friday nights and NEW this year – a drive-thru cookie booth in the Rite Aid parking lot.

    This year’s cookie line-up features Trefoils, Samoas, Thin Mints, Tagalongs, Do-si-dos and a new lemon cookie called Savannah Smiles. There is a cookie locator “app” that people can download for their phones.

    Details: Jennifer Morcate at 207-0218.

Women’s club meeting

HOLLISTER – The Women’s Club of Hollister invites the women of the community to luncheon on March 14, at 11:15 a.m. at San Juan Oaks. The speaker will be talking about resource conservation and the business meeting will follow. Established in 1913, Women’s Club of Hollister does philanthropic work all year in the community. For reservations, please email Ruth at [email protected] or call her at 636-6592 by March 12.

Parks commission to host workshop

HOLLISTER – The San Benito Parks and Recreation Commission will host an educational workshop on parks or a community services district, approved by the county board of supervisors. The Hollister and San Juan city councils, school districts, staff and members of the public are invited to attend. The meeting is March 13, from 6 to 8 p.m., at the county board of supervisors’ chambers. Details: 636-4000.

Street Fest accepts vendor applications

HOLLISTER – The Hollister Downtown Association is seeking vendors for its 26th Annual Street Festival and Car Show, scheduled from July 21, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., in downtown Hollister. Applications are available online at or at the office, 455 San Benito St., Ste. 21. Booth discounts are available to nonprofits, HDA members and Hollister’s Farmers Market 2012 vendors.

    Details: 636-8406 or [email protected]

SBHS Class of 2002 reunion set

HOLLISTER – The San Benito High School class of 2002 reunion will be May 19, at Leal Vineyards, from 5 to 10 p.m. Tickets are $45 and reservations are required by April 19. Details: Monica Cordova at 562-754-4075 or class of 2002reunion on Facebook.

Free compost class

HOLLISTER – Free composting classes will be held March 29, April 10 and May 15, from 6 to 8 p.m. Composting is a way to save money by lowering garbage bills and replacing store-bought soil conditioners. It helps garden and house plants by improving fertility and health of the soil, saving water by helping the soil hold moisture and reducing water runoff, and it benefits the environment by recycling valuable organic resources and extended the life of landfills. Participants will receive a free compost bin.

    Limited space is available so call ahead to sign up. The workshop is sponsored by San Benito County’s Integrated Waste Management Regional Agency.

    Details: 636-4110.

BLM advisory council seeks members

HOLLISTER – Central California residents concerned about public lands are invited to apply for a seat on a regional committee that advises the U.S. Bureau of Land Management. The Central California Resource Advisory Council advises BLM’s Hollister, Bakersfield, Bishop and Mother Lode field offices. The latter covers the Sacramento region.

    The BLM manages 15 million acres in California – nearly 15 percent of the state’s total area. The advisory councils, composed of 12 to 15 citizens with experience in natural resource issues, help BLM manage public lands to serve multiple needs.

    Three positions are vacant on the council. One is designated for a representative of an environmental, archaeological, historical, recreational or wild horse and burro organization. Two are for representatives of state or local government, Indian tribes, academic institutions or a member of the public-at-large.

    Nominations are due March 12. Forms and more details are online at For more information, contact David Christy at (916) 941-3146 or [email protected]

Native Daughters accept artwork for contest

SAN JUAN – The Native Daughters of the Golden West Parlor No. 179 will host a student art talent contest in the spring. All students attending high schools in San Benito County are invited to enter their work in two categories; two-dimensional works and photography. The purpose of the contest is to encourage the creativity of youth and interest in the history, landmarks and natural wonders of the State of California. The contest is open to all students in grades 9 through 12 in any school in California.  Enrollment in an art class is not required.

    The theme this year is “Teamwork.” The artwork must be accompanied by an entry form that includes a brief description of the subject and the reason it is a significant historical landmark or historical event or period in California history.  Limit is one entry per student. All original artworks and photographs are due by March 15 to the San Juan Bautista Parlor, No. 179, 203 Fourth St., San Juan Bautista, with prior arrangement. Please call at least 24 hours in advance to arrange for your drop off and pick-up to Darlene Boyd at 623-2750 or [email protected]   

    The pick-up date is April 11 after the award presentations at the monthly meeting, except for first place winners, whose art pieces will be delivered to the state level NDGW contest. All participants are invited to attend. First place winners will be contacted to pick up their works after June 30. Arrangements may be made by appointment for drop-off and pick up by contacting Darlene Boyd.

    Details: or email Darlene Boyd at [email protected]

Foundation accepts grant applications

HOLLISTER – The Community Foundation for San Benito County is accepting applications for is Community Impact Grants for 2012. Applications will be accepted through Sept. 28, and will be reviewed and approved on a monthly basis. To learn more about updated guidelines and the streamlined application process, visit

    Details: 630-1924 or

Story Time Camp coming up

HOLLISTER – Julie Engelhardt will offer a spring mini story time camp for children in grades kindergarten through second grade, April 9, 10 and 11, from 9 to 11 a.m. The theme is “Rescue Me From Boredom – Read a Good Book!” The cost is $20 per child, plus $7 for materials. The camp will focus on rescue personnel such as firefighters, police and paramedics, and include a trip to a local fire station and the police department.

    Details: Email Julie at [email protected]

Hazel Hawkins scholarship applications available

HOLLISTER – Applications for the 2012 Hazel Hawkins Hospital Auxiliary Scholarship Awards are now available. Each year the auxiliary awards scholarships to students who are pursuing a medical or medically oriented career. The total amount awarded to each recipient will be at the discretion of the scholarship committee.

    Auxiliary members put in thousands of hours throughout the year running a thrift shop, the hospital gift shop, and organizing their annual craft and antique faire in order to fund scholarships and purchase equipment for Hazel Hawkins Memorial Hospital.

    To be eligible to apply for a scholarship you must:

Be a high school graduate (or equivalent).

Be a resident of San Benito County for a minimum of one continuous year.

Be enrolled in health-related course of study at an accredited institution.

Apply by March 30.

    A complete list of eligibility rules and application packet are available at Hazel Hawkins Memorial Hospital Lobby, San Benito High School, Gavilan College, on the hospital website at

    Details: Call Frankie Gallagher in the HHH Public Relations office at 636-2644 for additional information.

AARP offers tax aide program

HOLLISTER – The AARP Tax-Aide program offers free personal tax counseling and preparation assistance to taxpayers of low-to-middle income, with special attention to those ages 60 and older. Volunteers will be available to help residents on Monday and Friday, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., through April 13, at the Hollister Community Center, 300 West St.

    Participants should bring all the tax documents they have received in the mail, last year’s tax return and all relevant information on income and expenses. Volunteer counselors are not trained to assist in preparing tax returns that report business, rental or partnership income. Call ahead to make an appointment.

    Details: Irma at 630-0642.

Free tax prep available

HOLLISTER – Volunteer income tax assistance will show residents how to keep 100 percent of their tax refund. Get a refund fast and avoid hidden fees. IRS-certified preparers make sure residents receive the largest refund possible Refunds are available in 7-10 days with direct deposit. Sites will be open through April 11. Household income must be less than $50,000. What to bring: photo ID, SSN or ITIN, W-2s, 1099s, 1098s and any other tax form you receive; a voided check for direct deposit; and last year’s tax return.

    The preparation is available at the following locations:  Wednesdays, from 6 to 9 p.m., through April 11 at the Community Services and Workforce Development office, 1111 San Felipe Road, Ste. 108; Mondays, from 6 to 8 p.m., through April 9, at the Si, Se Puede! Learning Center Villa Luna Apartments, 850 Hillcrest Road, 637-9097; March 13, from 3 to 7 p.m., at the Panoche Inn, 29960 Panoche Road, in Paicines; and April 7, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., at Mars Hill Coffee House, 610 San Benito St., in Hollister.

    Details: 637-9293 or visit

Rotary plans for summer antiques fair

SAN JUAN – The Rotary Club of San Juan Bautista is planning its 49th Annual Antique and Collectibles Fair for Aug. 12, from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., in San Juan. An appraiser will be available from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Applications are being accepted for vendor booths. The event this year will include an increase in vendors and food booths.

    All proceeds go to the club’s community grants program, emergency fund for local families, leadership opportunities for high school students and the donation of dictionaries to all third-grade children in the Aromas-San Juan Unified School District.

    Details: 207-2331 or email [email protected]

Registration open for ‘Path of Padres’ hikes

LOS BANOS – The “Path of the Padres” hike series will run Saturdays and Sundays at the Los Banos Creek Reservoir, thorough April 29. Reservations are now being accepted. The hikes begin at the Los Banos Creek Reservoir boat launch ramp at 8 a.m. and return at 3:30 p.m. A pontoon boat carries passengers for about 30-40 minutes to the west end of the reservoir.

    The hike is a five mile round-trip trek that shows where Spanish padres from Mission San Juan Bautista camped on their way to the Central Valley. The hike is moderately strenuous and participants should be in good physical condition. Hikers must be 6 years of age, and bring a minimum of two quarts of water, lunch and snacks. The fee is $12 for adults and $7 for children 6 to 12. There is also a $10 per vehicle parking fee.

    Details: 209-826-1197 or visit

Bridge lessons

HOLLISTER – New bridge classes have begun, including modern bridge conventions for duplicate and social bridge players of all levels. Learn about slam bidding on Feb. 21 and 28 and March 6. All classes are from 10:30-11:30 a.m. at Dunne Park. The cost of classes is $8 each.

    Details: Linda King at 801-9257 or email [email protected]

Caregiver University set for April

HOLLISTER – The Del Mar Caregiver Resource Center, the Area Agency on Aging, Jovenes de Antano and the Seniors Council will host a Caregiver University April 21, at the Hollister Community Center, 300 West St., in Hollister. The Caregiver University is a series of conferences that support and educate caregivers who are caring for loved ones with chronic health conditions. This year’s free events will include new topics designed especially to meet the needs of caregivers.

    Additional Caregiver Universities will be held March 24, at Inner Light Ministries, 5630 Soquel Drive, in Soquel, and May 19, at the Oldemeyer Center, 986 Hilby Ave., in Seaside.

    Details: Sandra at 459-6639.


Art League calendars on sale

HOLLISTER – The 2012 Hollister Art League Calendars of local flowers are now on sale.

    This calendar entitled “Beauty Around” features reproductions of original art in

oils, watercolors, acrylics, lino-cuts and photography by local artists.

    These colorful calendars may be purchased at Blak Sage Gallery and Country Rose Gallery & Frame. All proceeds go toward San Benito High School art scholarships.

    This project was made possible by a grant from the Community Foundation.

    Details: 637-6062 or 638-0277.

Red Cross seeks volunteers

HOLLISTER – The American Red Cross, Monterey Bay Area Chapter is looking for volunteers to staff the Hollister chapter office. The chapter office is located at 357 Fifth St., and the hours are Monday through Friday, from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Shifts are four hours, once a week, but any hours will be considered.

    Details: 636-2100 or contact volunteer Howard at 297-3696.

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