SACRAMENTO REGION, CA (MPG) - The Sacramento Walking Sticks Club will be celebrating the ratio between the circumference of a circle to its diameter—approximately 3.14—on Pi Day, Saturday, March 14, 2020. We invite everyone to join in on our event, walking and eating “pie” with us before and/or after the walk.

The start/finish of our event will be Marie Callender’s Restaurant & Bakery, 5622 Freeport Blvd, Sacramento, CA 95822.                                                               

Registration for the walk will be from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 Noon, finishing by 3:14 pm

Everyone will have their choice of walking either a 5k (3.14 miles) or a 10k (3.14 x 2) route that is rated a 1A. The routes are wheelchair and stroller friendly; the family dog will love the outing, but they cannot come into Marie Callender’s. Children are encouraged to come and walk on foot, use their scooters or skates and if they’re 12 and under—they can eat FREE at the last remaining Marie Callender’s in town.

Families are encouraged to come and walk. We walk for the fun and fitness of the event and to see new places along the way and hopefully meet some new friends as well. The walk takes people into little known areas of Sacramento—the Little Pocket neighborhood, Belle Cooledge and Bahnfleth Parks as well as walking by the Sacramento Executive Airport and the Sacramento Public Safety Center.  Everyone can walk for FREE or pay $3.14 for volkswalk credit. (The normal fee for volkswalk credit is $3.00 per walk—the extra 14¢ will be donated to a local food closet.

For more Pi information visit


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WEST SACRAMENTO, CA (MPG) – The Sacramento River Cats have announced the renewal and expansion of their partnership with FanCompass, a premier digital destination for fan engagement. There will be a host of new ways for fans to interact with the River Cats through, social media, the MiLB First Pitch app, and throughout Sutter Health Park on game days. The platform will also be the latest component of the River Cats’ sustainability circle, with paperless forms and waivers that will cut down on waste at the ballpark.

The FanCompass platform will be integrated with, the First Pitch app, and River Cats social media channels, offering a seamless way for fans to participate in contests, River Cats baseball trivia, voting for players of the homestand or favorite food items, and even trying to predict things like the time the game will end or the total number of pitches thrown. Pushing the frontiers of engagement, FanCompass will further enable the River Cats to use the feedback from the digital platform to improve the overall experience of enjoying River Cats baseball.

“We are thrilled serve as an innovation lab for FanCompass and work alongside them to offer our fans even more ways to connect with the River Cats, both from inside and outside the ballpark,” said River Cats General Manager Chip Maxson. “Their interactive platform will help us further execute on making Sutter Health Park a destination for affordable, family fun, while also helping with green initiatives by digitizing many necessary forms and waivers.”

“It has been a pleasure to work with the River Cats, using our technology to continuously push innovation around the way the fanbase interacts with the team,” said FanCompass CEO Jamie Pardi. “A leader in Minor League Baseball, the River Cats have been a perfect partner, sharing our vision of enhancing fan engagement and the overall fan experience.”

FanCompass is a Northern-California based company, currently working with teams across 12 sports leagues globally, and offering unique and interactive campaigns, geared toward fans of every major sport around the world.

The River Cats kick off 2020 by taking on the San Francisco Giants in an Exhibition Game on Sunday, March 22 at Sutter Health Park in West Sacramento. The club’s PCL and Triple-A championship-defense will officially begin on Thursday, April 9 in Reno, with Opening Night at Sutter Health Park coming on Tuesday, April 14 against the Tacoma Rainiers. Information about season ticket memberships and packages is available now at Single-game tickets for the 2020 season will go on sale beginning Sunday, March 1 at the annual Preseason Party at Sutter Health Park.

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Effie Yeaw Appoints New CEO

Photo and story by Susan Maxwell Skinner  |  2020-02-12

Kent Anderson (center) has begun work as the Effie Yeaw Nature Center’s Chief Executive. His staff includes Heather Gabel (left), Rachael Cowan, Kimberly Rider and volunteer Bev Lewis. Winged ambassador is Swainson’s hawk Orion.

CARMICHAEL, CA (MPG) - The Effie Yeaw Nature Center has begun a new year with a new executive officer. Kent Anderson (39) will lead staff and volunteers at the beloved Ancil Hoffman Park facility.

Anderson comes to Carmichael from a similar job on the Putah Creek Council – an organization with stewardship of more than 70 miles of waterways in several Northern California counties. The Roseville-raised executive earned his Natural Resource Management degree at Chico State University.

“My association with Effie Yeaw began as a child,” he recalls. “I came here for a program on bugs. I remember how the presenter really got the audience participating.  At end of the talk, the lights came on. We suddenly saw hundreds of nocturnal insects that had been attracted to the screen. The naturalist identified the bugs and carefully passed some of them around. For a kid, being able to touch and feel the creatures was the big takeaway. This is typical of how we like to educate at Effie Yeaw. It’s all about the people who’ve come to learn. We’d rather be guides on the side than sages on stage.” The naturalist likens Effie Yeaw’s 17 staff and 235 volunteers to a big family. “People here make you feel welcome,” he says. “It’s obvious they love the work they do. They’re amazing as individuals and as a team.”

More than 100-thousand visitors per year attend Nature Center programs and explore trails that traverse its preserve. Though the non-profit lost public funding nine years ago, operations continue thanks to community support, under the American River Natural History Association’s administration.

The new executive looks forward to 2020 fundraisers: two Bird and Breakfast programs are scheduled for March 28 and April 4; the annual spring gala and art auction will raise paddles on June 13; the fall NatureFest open day (October 11) will enable much animal and human interaction.

Upcoming center improvements include the construction of a new education area and outdoor aviaries. “It’s an exciting time for people to reengage with Effie Yeaw,” considers Anderson.  “And it’s an exciting time for me to join the team.”

Lean more about the Effie Yeaw nature Center at

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Faith as a Foundation

Story and photos by Shaunna Boyd  |  2020-01-30

(Left to right) Lead Director of Recovery John Heath and Elder Board members Pastor Dale Marsh and Pastor Gary Freitas welcome everyone to attend Higher Power recovery celebrations.

Higher Power Offers Faith-Based Recovery Program

SACRAMENTO REGION, CA (MPG) - Every Friday evening Higher Power Ministry holds faith-based recovery celebrations where Christian bands from a variety of genres perform. Music such as blues, country, and rock and roll are an essential component of the ministry. Lead Director of Recovery John Heath said, “The bands are central to Higher Power. We want to reach people where they are. … The music feeds their spirits.”

“God did something amazing,” said Heath. “He opened the doors to some amazing top bands to play at Higher Power in the Sacramento area” — The Frank Aldrich Band, Sons of the Golden State, Salvation Army Band, Skuirrel, Machaira Band, Rhythm and Praise, Crimson Blues, The Lost and The Found, John Voelz Band, Reid Bartlett Band, Son House Band, Lisa Daggs, Marc Cooper, Andrew Marshall, Aaron Gayden, and Tom Schrader.

The bands don’t sound like the typical Christian music one might expect, but the spiritual message emerges through the lyrics. James Croci of Rhythm and Praise said, “People need support — a place that gives them hope, help, and healing.” Croci believes that the “Spirit of God gives them the strength to overcome.”

On Friday, January 17, Crimson Blues performed at Higher Power’s celebration. After the concert, Heath welcomed everyone and explained that the purpose of the Higher Power Ministry is to be “a refuge from the storm” and “a place we can take off our masks.” He said, “We’re here to walk alongside you.”

Each week, a speaker talks to the group about their recovery from addiction such as drugs, alcohol, gambling, food addictions, sexual addictions, workaholics, co-dependency, and self-harm. Higher Power Theresa Nored was the featured speaker, and she has been clean for 24 years. She shared her story and her struggles with the group. “The details of the story don’t matter,” she said. “God brought redemption into my life.” She said, “You have to get through the mess to reach the message.”

She explained that the program is for “people who want a better way of life.” She also spoke about the importance of removing the stigma surrounding addiction so that people aren’t afraid to seek the help they need.

Tony T. is a member of Higher Power, and he has been sober for 34 years. He said, “A lot of people have addictions. They’re dying in their homes. … This is something really needed in this community.”

Richard Mireles was released from prison 10 months ago after serving for 21 years. He brought his drug and alcohol addiction with him to prison: “I thought I would die in there.” While serving his time in prison, Mireles got sober and turned his life around — even earning a degree in social and behavioral science and pursuing an MBA. He attributes his recovery to God, with “Him as my rock, my foundation.”

Mireles said some of the hardest moments of his recovery were after his release from prison while transitioning back into society. He said that God “gave me a will to not go backwards.” He now does a lot of advocacy work and encourages others to work toward recovery: “This is a source of staying sober — giving back. The true way to freedom is giving yourself up to service.”

Higher Power has a strong spiritual support system: An Elder Board comprised of two recovery pastors — each with 30 years of sobriety — who give spiritual advice and guidance. Heath said that Pastor Gary Freitas from Manteca and Pastor Dale Marsh from Oroville provide “spiritual direction, protection, and correction in the ministry.”

Pastor Freitas said, “There’s a real need for this, so we support him 100 percent.” He said that people are “searching for a higher power. They’re searching for a relationship that means something — to fill that void, that emptiness.”

Higher Power also helped start the Sacramento 12 Step Christian Recovery Network. Heath explained that the mission is to create “a community of believers under one banner whose primary purpose is to help other Christ-centered recovery ministries through support and fellowship.” The network of recovery programs throughout the region are creating a website to collect all the recovery resources in one place. Anyone who is suffering can find services to help, such as addiction recovery programs, homeless shelters, food banks, safe houses for women, help for trafficking victims, etc. Heath said, “We’re doing something that’s never been done — to put all the faith-based meetings in one place to help people get what they need to survive.”

Pastor Marsh said, “For Higher Power and for us, it’s really important to be part of the local recovery community. There’s a huge value participating in the network.”

Higher Power recovery celebrations are held each Friday at 7:00 PM at 755 Oak Avenue Parkway in Folsom where they serve free dinner, dessert, coffee, and other refreshments. Higher Power is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization; donation checks can be written to Higher Power Ministry and then mailed to Lakeside Church, 745 Oak Avenue Parkway, Folsom, CA 95630.

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SACRAMENTO COUNTY, CA (MPG) - The flu season is already in full swing in Sacramento County. With these flu cases increasing so early in the season, Sacramento County Public Health urges everyone to prioritize getting the flu shot now to protect you and your family from the deadly virus. 

Since the beginning of this year’s flu season, 12 flu cases have been admitted to the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) in Sacramento County and Public Health has received reports confirming influenza has claimed the life of a Sacramento County 66-year-old, as well as a 7-year-old who had multiple underlying medical conditions. This is the second pediatric death in California for the 2019/20 flu season.

Getting vaccinated is the best defense against the flu, but it takes a couple of weeks after vaccination for the body to build immunity. The strains of influenza that are circulating in Sacramento County this season are Influenza B, which is most prevalent among the cases (ICU and deaths, all ages) reported to Public Health, and Influenza A (not subtyped and subtype H1N1 and H3N2). The flu vaccine, which is readily available, covers the strains of the flu that have been detected in Sacramento County.

The California Department of Public Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommend annual influenza vaccinations for everyone six months of age and older – including pregnant women – who do not have medical contraindication to receiving the vaccine. 

A person’s decision to receive the flu vaccination or not affects the entire community – especially those who medically cannot have the flu vaccine. Those who have regular contact with people more vulnerable to the complications of flu – including babies, children with chronic health conditions such as asthma and diabetes, and adults 65 years and older – should get vaccinated so the flu virus isn’t spread to them.

“Everyone in the community, who can get vaccinated, should get vaccinated. Vaccination is the best protection against the flu, which is a preventable illness,” Sacramento County Public Health Officer Dr. Olivia Kasirye said. “As the number of vaccinated individuals in a community increases, it decreases the transmission of the flu virus to those who have not, or cannot be vaccinated resulting in fewer hospitalizations and deaths.”

The very contagious flu virus causes serious respiratory illness and comes on suddenly. Symptoms may include fever, headache, tiredness, cough, sore throat, nasal congestion, and body aches. Illness typically lasts two to seven days. Influenza may cause severe illness or even death in people such as the very young or old, or those who have underlying health conditions.

In addition to getting vaccinated, it’s crucial to practice good health habits. If you become ill with flu-like symptoms, you should take actions to stop the spread of germs, including:

Limit contact with others as much as possible to keep from infecting them.

Stay home for at least 24 hours after your fever is gone except to get medical care or for other necessities. 

Cover your coughs or sneezes with your sleeve or with a tissue, throw it in the trash and wash your hands.

Wash your hands often with soap and warm water. 

Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth. Germs spread this way.

Clean and disinfect surfaces and objects that may be contaminated with flu germs.

People with chronic medical conditions or those experiencing worsening flu symptoms should seek medical attention.

Sacramento County Public Health offers free flu vaccination clinics in the community. The next free flu clinics offered is: 

Healthy Sacramento Day - Hagginwood Community Center, Saturday, Jan. 25, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m., 3271 Marysville Blvd, Sacramento, CA 95815

If you need information about immunization services for children and adults, or need to refer clients or get information regarding upcoming influenza clinics, please contact the Sacramento County Immunization Assistance Program at 916-875-SHOT (7468) Monday-Friday between 8:00 am – 5:00 pm, or use the Flu Vaccine Finder on the CDC website, or the HealthMap Flu Vaccine Finder


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SACRAMENTO REGION, CA (MPG) - The Capitol Pops Concert Band will wrap up its 23rd season with a free, open to the public holiday concert at 7 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 7, 2019, at the Rusch Park Gym, 7801 Auburn Blvd., in Citrus Heights.

Under the baton of Director Judith Steinle, the CPCB will once again play traditional favorites, seasonal musical hits and carols in its "Holiday Celebration" program.

This performance, sponsored by the Sunrise Recreation and Park District and the City of Citrus Heights, is family friendly and a great way to usher in the holiday season. The two-hour concert includes a 20-minute intermission.

Various prizes will be on display for donation ticket drawings. The public also will have the opportunity to purchase a variety of colorful poinsettias after the concert concludes.  Longtime CPCB supporter Eisley Nursery of Auburn has donated a large poinsettia plant as a grand prize in support of the band's student scholarship fund.

Started in 1997, the CPCB has performed a diverse portfolio of high-quality, well-prepared music heard by thousands of concert-goers throughout Northern California.  Based in Citrus Heights, the self-supporting, nonprofit community band of about 50 musicians represents a wide cross-section of the Sacramento area. For more information on the Capitol Pops, visit or its Facebook page.

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Annual Operation Gobble Distributes Thanksgiving Turkeys

By Rachael Serrao, Randle Communications  |  2019-11-29

Rancho Cordova City Council, Rotary Club of Rancho Cordova, Grocery Outlet Rancho Cordova and Kiwanis Club of Rancho Cordova members are taking the turkeys to the streets. Photo courtesy Golden State Water

RANCHO CORDOVA, CA (MPG) – Golden State Water Company (Golden State Water) was pleased to partner with the Rancho Cordova City Council, Rotary Club of Rancho Cordova, Grocery Outlet Rancho Cordova and Kiwanis Club of Rancho Cordova to distribute turkeys this holiday season to local nonprofit organizations that serve families and individuals with limited resources through its annual Operation Gobble outreach program

Operation Gobble is a philanthropic partnership between Golden State Water, the California Water Association and local and state elected officials. This year, Golden State Water employees distributed more than 8,000 turkeys to local community-based organizations, churches, food banks, senior centers and other nonprofits in the communities it serves.

“Holiday memories are built around a warm meal with loved ones,” said Paul Schubert, Northern District General Manager for Golden State Water. “Golden State Water appreciates the opportunity to partner with local elected leaders and community organizations to deliver Thanksgiving turkeys to those in our community who need them most.”

Operation Gobble has been a Golden State Water tradition since 1990. Over the last 29 years, Golden State Water has donated more than 240,500 turkeys through the program.

“Operation Gobble is an important holiday tradition for all of our employees,” said Ronald Moore, Golden State Water’s Operation Gobble project leader. “We take great pride in serving more than 80 communities in California, and that service extends far beyond the water we deliver to homes. It’s also about giving back.”

To learn more about Golden State Water’s community partnerships and philanthropic activities, customers are encouraged to visit, or follow @GoldenStateH2O on Twitter and Facebook.

Golden State Water Company (Golden State Water) is a wholly-owned subsidiary of American States Water Company (NYSE:AWR).   Golden State Water provides water service to more than 1 million people in over 80 communities throughout California, and distributes electricity to approximately 24,000 customers in the City of Big Bear Lake and surrounding areas in San Bernardino County, California, through its Bear Valley Electric Service division. American States Water Company also owns a contracted services subsidiary, American States Utility Services, Inc. (ASUS).  ASUS provides operations, maintenance and construction management services for water and wastewater systems located on military bases throughout the country under 50-year privatization contracts with the U.S. government.

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