Category Archives: Local News

Ron Napoles wins BLM Excellence in Interpretation Award

Bishop Park Ranger Receives BLM Excellence in Interpretation Award

Bishop Calif. – Ron Napoles, Recreation Park Ranger for the Bureau of Land Management’s (BLM) Bishop Field Office, has received this year’s national award for contributions in the field of interpretation.

Ron was recognized for developing and designing a set of interpretive panels in collaboration with the fourth through seventh grade classes at Round Valley Elementary School in Bishop. The panels are being used on a nature trail at the Horton Creek Campground, managed by the Bishop Field Office.

In the fall and winter of 2014-2015, staff from the Bishop Field Office joined multiple partners to provide a series of classroom lessons to the fourth through seventh grade classes at the school. The classroom workshops taught students about local wildlife and plants, the Paiute people and the geology and ecology of the Eastern Sierra. Students also did their own research on the Sierra Nevada. As part of their lessons, they wrote text, drew and colored pictures, and created maps and images about what they learned.

“Ron took the text and illustrations made by the students and made a set of beautiful and creative interpretive signs for the nature trail,” said Jeff Starosta, Acting Supervisory Resource Management Specialist. “By engaging local school kids in creating the panel content, the Bishop Field Office, Ron in particular, helped to realize the primary goal of BLM’s Recreation Strategy: to connect with communities.”

Nominees for the award were evaluated on the basis of their success in enhancing the public’s understanding of the cultural and natural resources of our public lands, supporting BLM goals and objectives, helping the public to recognize their connection to public lands, creating programs that are accessible to diverse audiences, involving partners and developing strong working relationships with local communities.

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Mammoth Lakes PD says “Know your Limit”

Know Your Limit Before Driving Impaired

submitted by the Mammoth Lakes Police Department

Mammoth Lakes, CA – The Mammoth Lakes Police Department is beginning a new educational program to reduce drunk and impaired driving. On November 28, 2015, from 10:00 PM to 1:00 AM, the Mammoth Lakes Police Department, in partnership with Mono County Behavioral Health and Mammoth Taxi, will be conducting a Know Your Limit event in the Village at Mammoth.

Know Your Limit is designed to help potentially impaired drivers make informed decisions as to whether or not they are capable of operating a motor vehicle safely. Officers will be present in front of Lakanuki (6201 Minaret Road) with several PAS devices and educational material. Citizens will be offered the opportunity to submit to a voluntary PAS test, also known as a breath test. The results will be provided to the citizen, along with information on driving under the influence and a token for a free taxi ride provided by Mammoth Taxi. The tokens have been paid for by Mono County Behavioral Health and can be used the night of this event or any other night for a ride home provided that the ride is within the town limits. If the taxi ride is outside town limits (i.e., Main Lodge, the Bluffs, or Crowley Lake), the token is only good for its face value of $5.

This educational program offers citizens the opportunity to learn more about alcohol consumption and its effect on their breath alcohol content. MLPD hopes that by providing citizens with a better understanding of their own limits on alcohol consumption that they will choose not to drive if they are above the legal limit.

The Mammoth Lakes Police Department will offer this informative opportunity several times throughout the year in Mammoth Lakes.

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Mono County Search and Rescue

Successful Mono County Mission on Mt. Morrison

Provided by the Mono County Sheriffs Department:

Search and Rescue Operation on Mount Morrison

On Friday, November 20, 2015, two hikers from Ventura, California, called 911 for help.  The two friends had attempted to summit Mt. Morrison just south of Mammoth Lakes, California, but reached a spot on a steep slope near the summit from where they were unable to continue either up or down.  The Mono County Sheriff’s Office Search and Rescue team responded to the trailhead at Convict Lake and sent teams into the hikers’ location.  The Search and Rescue Teams were able to assist them down from their location and escorted them back to their campsite.

Many thanks to our Search and Rescue members, who volunteer their time and expertise to safely extricate those who are in need of assistance in the back country.

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Independence Celebrates the Fruitcake!

Eleventh Annual Internationally Acclaimed Independence Fruitcake Festival

Fruit-A-Con, “Welcome to the Fruitcake Universe!”

submitted by Mary Roper

Superheroes and comic strip characters along with a variety of fruitcakes and eggnogs will be making an appearance on December 12th in Independence, California. This year, in the tradition of Comic Con, the Fruitcake Festival will be honoring the fact that fruitcake is, indeed, the food of Superheroes. There will be live music, fabulous prizes and interesting fruitcakes and eggnogs!
The possibilities are endless for creating a winning fruitcake. Categories include oldest, traveled the farthest, best of theme, most solids, and judges’ award. Our fruitcake judges employ mechanical, empirical and philosophical techniques to select winning fruitcakes in those categories.
There will be an opportunity for you to take the mic and brag about your fruitcake or eggnog. However, please leave your kryptonite at home. You must play nice with Superman.
Most people participate by wearing theme-oriented costumes. This is not required, but in the past we have found that a good many people like to dress up more than their fruitcakes. The Costume Contest is just the place to show off your creativity and the “Best Costume” prize is awarded to the person with the loudest applause.
No need to eat dinner before you come. The Owens Valley Growers Co-op will be serving up mac & cheese and a salad for $5. To boost your energy for the evening, coffee is available at the bar.
This is the only “internationally” acclaimed Fruitcake Festival. Such venerable periodicals as the Washington Times, Country Living Magazine, and, of course, NPR have written us up.
This is a FREE event with the caveat that you must bring a fruitcake or eggnog to gain entrance to the Festival. Homemade fruitcake or eggnog is preferred. The eggnog can be transported to the festival in a milk jug. Please label it as “leaded” or “unleaded.” We have refrigeration on site. The eggnog is always served in elegant punch cups at the bar. It is worth the trip to Independence just for that fact alone.

Location: Legion Hall, Independence, CA
Date/Time Dec. 12, 2015 — 6 PM
Call 760-878-2046 or email for more information

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Don’t Drink and Fry

Mammoth Lakes Fire Department warns of Cooking Dangers

Three Times as Many Cooking Fires Occur on Thanksgiving as on a Typical Day

submitted by Mammoth Lakes Fire Department:

The holidays should be a time of food, fun and festivities but it is also a time for extra caution. Thousands of home fires across the nation are caused by holiday cooking activities. According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), Thanksgiving is the leading day of the year for home fires involving cooking equipment and many of these fires are caused by unsafe cooking practices.

NFPA’s latest cooking estimates shows that there were 1,550 cooking fires on Thanksgiving in 2014, reflecting a 210 percent increase over the daily average. Home cooking fires also spike on other major U.S. holidays, including Christmas Day, Christmas Eve and Memorial Day weekend. Unattended cooking is the leading cause of home cooking fires.

While the number of cooking fires spikes on holidays, it’s also one of the leading causes of home fire year-round. Between 2009 and 2014, U.S. fire departments responded to an estimated average of 162,400 home cooking fires per year. These fires resulted in an annual average of 430 civilian fire deaths, 5,400 reported injuries and $1.1 billion in direct property damage.

Be on alert and keep these tips in mind this holiday cooking celebration:
⦁ Always stay in the kitchen while frying, grilling or broiling food. If you have to leave the kitchen for even a short period of time, turn off the stove. Regularly check on food that’s simmering, baking or roasting, and use a timer to remind you that you’re cooking.
⦁ Keep things that can catch fire such as oven mitts, wooden utensils, food packaging, towels and curtains away from the cooking area.
⦁ Be alert when cooking. If you are sleepy or have consumed alcohol, don’t use the stove or stovetop.
⦁ If you have a small (grease) cooking fire on the stovetop and decide to fight the fire: Smother the flames by sliding a lid over the pan and turning off the burner. Leave the pan covered until it is completely cooled. For an oven fire, turn off the heat and keep the door closed.
⦁ If you’re cooking a turkey using a disposable aluminum pan, consider doubling up and using two pans to avoid a puncture, as dripping turkey juices can cause an oven fire.
If you have a cooking fire:
⦁ Just get out! When you leave, close the door behind you to help contain the fire.
⦁ Call 9-1-1 after you leave.
⦁ If you try to fight the fire, be sure others are getting out and you have a clear way out.

NFPA discourages the use of turkey fryers, a popular cooking method on Thanksgiving. The use of turkey fryers can lead to devastating burns and other injuries, and the destruction of property due to the large amount and high temperature of oil used. If a fryer is used, please be extra careful and follow the manufacturer’s instructions.

If you have any questions or wish additional information, please feel free to contact the Mammoth Lakes Fire Department at 760 934-2300

mammoth lakes fire department, eastern sierra news, National Fire Protection Association

NICU training at Mammoth Hospital

Neonatal Intensive Care Training Held at Mammoth Hospital

submitted by Mammoth Hospital

Mammoth Hospital recently invited a Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) team to Mammoth for a special training on life saving skills for newborn babies.

Neonatologist, Dr. Anand Rajani from Community Regional Medical Center in Fresno led the instruction along with Neonatal Nurse Practitioner Abby Van Den Broeke and Respiratory Therapists Curt Partain and Hank Perry.

Mammoth Hospital Labor and Delivery nurses and Pediatricians, ED physicians, and respiratory therapists participated in collaboration with a team of nurses and physicians from Northern Inyo Hospital. Teams were instructed on techniques including umbilical line placement, a procedure that enables quick access to an infant’s bloodstream to deliver lifesaving medications. Also demonstrated were neonatal IV placement for the nurses and various lectures on issues relevant to the critically ill newborn.

“Living in a rural community, the nearest Children’s Hospital is many hours away,” says Pediatrician, Dr. Kristin Collins. “This training by NICU professionals allows us to continue to enhance our life-saving skills, and keep us well-informed on how to provide the best care possible for sick babies before the NICU team can arrive for transport. Maintaining an exceptional level of care is important to all of us who work in the Obstetric and Neonatal Department at Mammoth Hospital and continuing education is imperative to ensuring that happens.”

For more information on Mammoth Hospital’s Birthing Center and Obstetric Specialties, please contact (760) 924-4044 or visit

photo submitted by Mammoth Hospital
photo submitted by Mammoth Hospital
photo submitted by Mammoth Hospital
photo submitted by Mammoth Hospital
photo submitted by Mammoth Hospital
photo submitted by Mammoth Hospital
photo submitted by Mammoth Hospital
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Northern Inyo Hospital Event

NIH Reception welcomes new emergency care providers

submitted by Northern Inyo Hospital:

Northern Inyo Healthcare District will host a “Meet and Greet” reception introducing some of its newest emergency care providers to the community.

The reception is set for Monday, Nov. 23rd, 5 – 6:30 p.m. at the main lobby of Northern Inyo Hospital. The physicians spotlighted during the event include:

  • Peter Bloomfield, MD, a veteran emergency care physician, has enjoyed time abroad, offering his services as an earthquake relief worker in Haiti, as a Peace Corps volunteer in Belize, and back home again as a Pharmaceutical Assistant at a Washington, DC free clinic. Dr. Bloomfield earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in History from Williams College in Williamstown, Massachusetts. He earned a Masters in Public Health and his Medical degree from Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland. A residency at UCLA brought him west. In his off-time, Dr. Bloomfield practices yoga and meditation, and studies Kung Fu.
  • Anne Goshgarian, MD, earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Kinesiology, with Highest Honors from University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign, Illinois. She earned her Medical degree from Creighton University School of Medicine in Omaha, Nebraska. Dr. Goshgarian completed her residency in Emergency Medicine at the University Medical Center of Southern Nevada in Las Vegas, Nevada. Dr. Goshgarian provides voluntary medical care to many artistic festivals including Nevada’s Burning Man Festival and the Electric Daisy Carnival.
  • William “Will” Timbers, MD, hails from Vermont and grew up with a zest for outdoor living. An avid skier, accomplished high school and collegiate Lacrosse player, and climbing enthusiast, Dr. Timbers enjoys many of the outdoor activities Bishop offers and looks forward to learning more about our area. Dr. Timbers earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in English Literature from Saint Lawrence University in Canton, New York, and his Medical degree from the University of Vermont’s College of Medicine. He completed his Harvard-affiliated Emergency Medicine residency at the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston, Massachusetts.Cover Photo by Arnie Palu

Bishop JV Mathletes 3rd at Kern Valley

Bishop Union JV Mathltes take 3rd at Kern Valley

BUHS JV Mathletes Team
Kern Valley, November 4, 2015

The Bronco’s JV Mathletes team traveled to Kern Valley on November 4, 2015 for their second meet of the year. In a tough round of competition, the JV Broncos brought home 3rd place team honors with a score of 24, trailing first place Desert with 36 points, and Tehachapi with 26 points. Nine schools and 72 students competed at the meet, with students on the teams individually completing difficult math problems in a timed setting.

Jeanine Lomaintewa and Jim Tomasek were the leading scorers for the Broncos with eight points each, followed by Dylan Fitt with six points, and Tami Lee and Carter Silva with four points each. Also earning points for the Broncos were Joey Proeger, Jennifer Velazquez, Nathan Gardea, and Sam Omondi. Five members of the team earned individual honors. Lomaintewa and Tomasek earned individual first place finishes, Fitt earned a third place individual finish, and Lee and Silva earned fifth place individual awards.

The JV team’s next meet will be on January 13 in Trona.

UCLA grad student found deceased

UCLA grad student found deceased

By Arnie Palu

The Inyo County Sheriffs department confirms the recovery of the body of missing hiker Michael David Meyers. On Saturday crews located his body in a recent avalanche debris field near Mt. Irvine.

Meyers, a native of St. Cloud Minnesota was reported missing on Sunday, November 15th. Family members indicate that Meyers went hiking in the Mt. Russell/Mt. Whitney area on Friday, November 6th. Meyers was expected to return to UCLA on Monday, November 9th. His 2002 gray Dodge Durango was located on Wednesday, November 18th near the Mt. Whitney overflow parking area. The Inyo Sheriffs department notes that the vehicle was spotted by a local resident while hiking in the Mt. Whitney trail head area. The Meyers family indicates that Michael had left a detailed itinerary of his rout up Mt. Russell on the vehicles dash board.

A massive search and rescue operation ensued. Inyo County crews worked with the assistance of a California Highway Patrol helicopter. The Inyo Sheriffs office indicates that additional resources were requested from the California office of Emergency Services. On Friday, November 20th approximately 40 search and rescue personnel from throughout the state, as well as a Chinook helicopter from the California Air National Guard were assigned. In the afternoon items belonging to Meyers were located in a recent avalanche debris field near Mt. Irvine. The Sheriffs Department indicates that additional resources were requested including search dog teams and sonar type equipment. On Saturday crews located the body of Michael Meyers in the avalanche area.

cover photo, Michael David Meyers, photo provided by the Meyers Family

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Lion on Llama crime in Crowley

Mono County Sheriff reports Dog mauled and Llama killed in Crowley

Report submitted by the Mono County Sheriffs department:

On Tuesday, November 17, a mountain lion attacked a dog near Mountain View Drive. The dog was badly mauled but survived the attack. On Saturday, November 21, a mountain lion attacked and killed a llama near Willowbrook Road. We do not know if both attacks were by the same mountain lion.

Mountain lions are solitary and elusive, and their nature is to avoid humans. They are most active at dawn, dusk and night. Mountain lions prefer deer, but they also eat pets and livestock. In extremely rare cases, people have fallen prey to mountain lions.
Although mountain lions are neither threatened nor endangered, they are a specially protected species in California, and it is illegal to hunt or otherwise take a mountain lion absent specific circumstances. Mountain lions that threaten people are immediately killed. Those that prey on pets or livestock can be killed by a property owner after the required depredation permit is secured. Moving problem mountain lions is not an option. It causes deadly conflicts with other mountain lions already there, or the relocated mountain lion returns.

To keep your family and animals safe, please heed the following advice:
• Do not hike, bike, or jog alone and avoid hiking or jogging when mountain lions are most active.
• Don’t leave small children or pets outside unattended.
• Keep a close watch on small children.
• Do not approach a mountain lion.
• If you encounter a mountain lion, do not run; instead, face the animal, make noise and try to look bigger by waving your arms; throw rocks or other objects. Pick up small children.
• If attacked, fight back.
• If a mountain lion attacks a person, immediately call 911.
• Don’t feed deer; it is illegal in California and it will attract mountain lions.
• Deer-proof landscaping by avoiding plants that deer like to eat.
• Trim brush to reduce hiding places for mountain lions.
• Install motion-sensitive lighting around the house.
• Provide sturdy, covered shelters for sheep, goats, and other vulnerable animals.
• Don’t allow pets outside when mountain lions are most active.
• Bring pet food inside to avoid attracting potential mountain lion prey.
More information about mountain lions can be found on the California Fish and Wildlife website:

cover photo, file photo provided by the California department of fish and wildlife

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