Your Chemeketa Park Newsletter with news & mountain living tips.
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The Chemeketa Park Newsletter

Enjoying summertime in the mountains.

A round up of news, events, and community

The Santa Maria style BBQ in the park is ready for use!

The grill works by raising or lowering the food above the coals to control the heat. It should work well even on windy days.

Santa Maria-style barbecue - Wikipedia provides basic history and suggested dishes. Santa Maria-Style BBQ Tri-Tip Recipe | Bobby Flay | Food Network provides a highly rated tri-tip recipe. Santa Maria BBQ - Sunset has a full article on this native California BBQ method.

What are you going to create on this new grill?

The grill would not have occurred except for the foresight and planning of a few community residents on the community garden committee. 

Specifically thanks go to:

Funding by the Chemeketa Park Mutual Water Company

Neighbors (all time volunteered, btw):

Chris Sands, Bobcat site prep
Guy Furlo, Backhoe site prep
Kent Knop, Plaster finish
Mark Wallace, Backsplash design and tile work
Dan Markey, Design and labor
George Bruder, Project Lead, design and labor
Jody McCalmont Project Manager and budget keeper
Joanne Woldhagen, Design
Linda Wallace, Design colorist
Neil Wolley, Ground chip labor

JD Fabrications BBQ, Santa Maria BBQ hardware
Tom Markey, Masonry
Martin De La Riva, Retaining wall

PS: Please keep the site and grill clean. Also, do not place hot coals in the trash bins... that would be bad.

Let your neighbors know about the newsletter. They can sign up online on the Chemeketa Park Subscribe page.

Regular Water Board Meetings

You are invited to attend the meeting. Bring your ideas, suggestions, and comments. As a community we have a lot of different projects to manage, plus a long list of park improvements. Many hands makes for light work - get involved.

Topics of discussion recently have been focused on:

Water system improvement and maintenance projects - more on this below.

Road maintenance (got two of four major projects done) plus upcoming routine road maintenance. Let Richard or anyone on the board know about cracks, potholes, crushed berms, or sections of road that require attention.

BTW: The broken mirror on Ogallala Warpath is on order and will soon be back up providing a peek around the curve in  the road.

The dumpsters filled in record time this year. If you have large items to get rid off you still can. If the item is useable post it on or If it really is trash, contact the GreenTeam (our garbage pick up service) to explore your options.

The next meeting is September 14th in the club house starting at 7:30pm.

The meetings are typically the 2nd Thursday of each month. Check the events calendar online for details.

Out for a walk today and noticed the blackberries in the park are sweet and a bit difficult to reach through the brambles. Moody Gulch creek is flowing well, yet much slower than even two months ago. And, there are a bevy of kids on bikes and scooters playing around Bunny's corner (please drive slowly).

It is Fire Season

Prepared with input from Brad Hartzell

The chipping program had a record amount of brush delivered to the park. Thanks for cleaning up your property and the park.

The chipping program is to encourage us to create and maintain a defensible space about our home as a defensive against wildfire. We are in the fire season as witnesses by a small brush fire near Hwy 17 and Summit just yesterday.

Here are a 10 tips to keep us all safer this and every fire season:

Within 30' of your home

  1. Remove all dead plants, grass, and weeds.
  2. Remove dead or dry leaves and pine needles from your yard, roof, and rain gutters.
  3. Keep tree branches 10 feet away from your chimney and other  trees.

From 30' to 100' of your home

      4.  Cut or mow annual grasses and weeds.
      5.  Create horizontal spacing between shrubs and trees.
      6.  Create vertical spacing between grass, shrubs, and trees.

Use Equipment Properly

     7.  Mow before 10am and never on hot or windy day. String                                     trimmers are a safer option (vs. lawnmowers) for clearing vegetation.

The 7 tips above are from a CalFire Wildfire information sheet. See the Cal Fire site for information as you plan, prepare, and act to address the real risk of wildfires in our area.

Here are a few more tips that neighbors have suggested I include here:

      8.  Use a chain saw or metal bladed trimmer with someone watching for                  sparks. They should have a bucket or hose with water ready.
      9.  We may get little warning to evacuate. Plan now on what you will take.                Make arrangements with neighbors to gather pets and essentials if you              unable to get home yourself.
     10.  Do not block the road loading your furniture during an evacuation.                      (Apparently this did happen when the park had less than an hour to clear            out.)

Join SPUG and enjoy preferred (lower) pricing on propane with participating propane suppliers. Skyline Propane User Group is open to residents of Chemeketa Park and has a modest annual fee, yet it cut our propane bill in half last year.

The Many Water Projects Update

Prepared by Dan Markey

Fire hydrant:

A fire hydrant on crow was relocated out of the traffic pattern,
protected with a bollard and a shut off valve was installed to reduce
the risk of losing water in the system from a crash.  (a car hit the
fence on the opposite side last year).

Plant Automation:

Cellular service has been installed into the treatment plant and
testing of the automation is ongoing.  The extra costs associated with
daily operation has been eliminated.

Nitrification Plan:

We were approved by the state to move forward with our Nitrification
Control Plan which will allow us to continue to use the Montevina
pipeline water source.  Permission was also received to use the
existing backwash tank to support the Nitrification Plan and the first
pipes have been placed in the ground.

Moody Creek:

The Creek continues to flow at a level enough to meet our needs

Booster Pump:

An application has been submitted to the state for approval of funding
the construction of a new main booster pump.  The paperwork is

New Short Well:

An application has been submitted to the state for approval of funding
the planning of a new short well.  The paperwork is ongoing.
We (Diane and Fred) are considering capturing a bit of history concerning the park. A few residents have suggested interviewing the long time residents capturing memories of events, disasters, happenings, and life in the mountains.

If you have lived in the park for 20 or more years, we'd like to talk to you. Hit reply or send an email to Fred at to arrange a time to talk.

With participant's permission we will record the discussions to create highlights for this newsletter, for a Chemeketa Park History podcast, and possibly for a book about the park. (may be handy to add a map with 'old Dave's house', the 'car wash house', etc.)

Emergency Preparedness — Part 2

Prepared by Dana Hartzell

In the last issue of the new Chemeketa Park Newsletter we outlined how to create your family emergency preparedness plan.  Did you make you plan yet?  If not, start today!  Don’t wait! It takes a little bit of work, but it will make a huge difference if we need to evacuate or if an earthquake strikes our area. (To be honest, I haven’t finished my plan either!!  I will make a commitment to you and my family to have it done by the next Chemeketa Park Newsletter!!) 
In this issue of the Newsletter we will talk about your Emergency Supply Kit and what to put inside of it.
Everyone in your family should have their own personal emergency supply kit.  These kits are collections of supplies they may need when an earthquake strikes or if a wildfire requires you to evacuate. Personalize the kits and keep them where they can easily be reached – at home, in each car, and at work. You can use a backpack or other small bag so they can be easily carried in an evacuation. Many items are listed to get you thinking about what is important to you and your family.
  • Medications and medical consent forms for dependents.
  • Copies of vital documents, such as insurance policies and personal identification.
  • First aid kit and handbook.
  • Spare eyeglasses
  • Extra pair of house and car keys.
  • Personal hygiene supplies such as soap, toothpaste/toothbrush, and toilet paper.
  • Bottled water (minimum one gallon per person per day).
  • Water purification kit (to use at home after an earthquake).
  • Whistle (to alert rescuers to your location).
  • Emergency cash.
  • List of emergency contact phone numbers.
  • Emergency lighting – light sticks and/or a working flashlight with extra batteries and light bulbs (hand-powered flashlights are also available).
  • A hand-cranked or battery-operated radio (and spare batteries).
  • Snack foods high in calories.
  • Items to protect you from the elements, such as warm clothing, sturdy shoes, extra socks, blankets, and perhaps even a tent.
  • Heavy-duty plastic bags for waste and to serve other uses, such as tarps and rain ponchos.
  • Work gloves and protective goggles.
  • Pet food and pet restraints
  • Comfort items, such as games, crayons, writing materials, and teddy bears.
In case of earthquake, you may remain in your house for a period of time. In that case, you should also have:
  • Canned and packaged foods and cooking utensils, including a manual can opener.
  • Paper towels, plates, cups.
  • Camping stove for outdoor cooking (Caution: before using fire to cook, make sure there are no gas leaks; never use charcoal indoors.)
  • Axe, shovel, broom, rope
  • Adjustable wrench for turning off gas
  • Tool kit including screwdriver, pliers, and hammer.
  • Plastic tape, staple gun and sheeting for window replacement.
NOTE: Replace perishable items like water, food, medications, and batteries on a yearly basis.
This list came from two sources: American Red Cross, and USGS (US Geological Survey).  You can visit their websites for additional information. 
This is an excellent resource from Homeland Security on putting together a plan for your family. Here is the link:
Here is an additional resource geared towards kids to learn about disaster preparedness:
That Wine Thing (aka Wine Wednesday or Wine Walk) has been great fun. A chance to share a beverage, a few snacks, and great conversations.

You are invited! Bring a glass, a bottle of wine or other beverage, a snack or nibble (no need to feed everyone - there has always been way too much food).

Generally held at the park picnic area starting at 5:30pm Wednesdays. Watch for notes on concerning any changes or themes. The plan going forward is weekly till Labor Day then monthly till Memorial Day.

I've lived here for over 10 years [Fred] and have met and gotten to know more neighbors at these events over the past few weeks then over the previous 10 years. Plan on sitting down and talking about life in the mountains, traffic on 17, water board happenings, recent home sales, and more. Make real connection and get to really know your neighbors.

Kids and dogs have plenty of room to play and are welcome.

A Couple More Notes

Prepared by Dana Hartzell


Did you know your neighbor might your life line?
This subject always comes up and it is a difficult one to resolve.  In talking with the Fire Safe Council and others, the best way to solve this important issue is to get to know your neighbors.  Our Chemeketa Park community is broken down into small little neighborhoods or streets where neighbors get to know each other. Form a “pod” with 3-6 of your closest neighbors that live right around you and tell them if you have pets, or an elderly relative, or whatever is important to you. Trade phone numbers that you can use in case of emergency. Help each other out during those stressful times. Many of us had to start doing this with all of the road closures this past winter; feeding and walking pets, etc. Get outside and get to know your neighbors.



Do you often wonder what’s happening when you hear sirens in the area? You can and should be aware of what’s happening, so here are a couple of apps to add to your collection. 
  • The Pulsepoint app (www. ) is designed to allow people to find the closest AED device (automated external defibrillator) which is used to treat sudden cardiac arrest. BUT the really cool thing about this app is that it tells you where and why the local fire department has been dispatched. You look up “agencies” and type in SCCFD (Santa Clara County Fire Department) and click to follow. You can also follow Santa Cruz, etc. When you hear sirens, check the app and it will tell you if it’s a medical, traffic accident, or whatever and a general location.  It also tells you which fire department has been sent to the incident (E84 is our local Redwood Estates engine.)  Now you don’t have to wonder!
  • The Cal Fire app is helpful in the same way.  You can get a list of incidents that are active and even sign up for notifications if you want to know each time Cal Fire is dispatched in your area.  This would be for larger events or for local mountain areas where Cal Fire is the first due engine company.  Go to their website ( ) and scroll down the page to find the link to their app.  You can also find it in the app store (Google or Apple).
The newsletter is just getting started. It's another way we can stay in touch, share ideas, and improve life in the park.

The email list is for the quarterly newsletter plus occasional announcements for residents, owners, or renters.
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