Volume XI, Issue 24: January 13, 2012

Noëmi & the Birthday Boy
Exchange Student Noëmi  Schönenberger told us that she had a busy
week.  In addition to having an appetizer
party with her host family, she also had finals at Arcata High School.  It wasn’t clear whether she had special plans
for President Scott’s birthday.
Announcements From The Birthday Boy
January 21           Friends
of the Dunes Native Plants Day At Coastal Nature Center  –  9 to
11 am

January 28           Arcata
Playhouse Fundraiser featuring the Country Pretenders. $20 per person.
February 17         Rotary
Club of Arcata Sunrise, 20th Anniversary Charter Night.
March 10             Firehouse
Fundraiser 2012 — The Circus! 
Take The Birthday Boy To The Circus
Ceva Courtemanche provided our first glimpse at this year’s
Firehouse Fundraiser — The Circus!  Ceva said that this theme is intended to be
actual reminiscent of the circus from the 1900s.  She said, “Think of the movie ‘Like Water for
Elephants’.” The decorations will feature the colors red and gold, which
should create an atmosphere of elegance. 
The entertainment will include circus performers.
The prices will be the same as last year: $500 for an eight
seat table, $75 for individuals, and tickets will be available for the
dance/after party as well for only $10. 
Ceva told us that radio promotion spots will begin next week.
Event Chair Dan Johnson reminded us that we have only eight
weeks until the event.  We need to sell
tables and individual tickets as quickly as possible.  We also need to secure live action items and
collect raffle and silent auction items. 
Dan said that this year the event will break $1 million in total
revenue.
Posters are available for the event; check with Ceva.  Like always, the event will be a lot of work,
but also a lot of fun.
Bob Johnson Recognizes The Birthday Boy (And Others)
Craig and Janice Newman, celebrated their 40th anniversary
on December 18.  I think they were traveling in Oregon at the time, but I’m not
sure.  What I do know is that they had
some great dinners, but they left the fish alone … this time.
December 28 was Anniversary Number 41 for Kathy and Bill
Fraser.  Kathy said that they had traveled
quite a bit before that, and they were a little tired.  So they decided to take it easy for their
anniversary.
There were a few subtle hints that Friday was President
Scott’s birthday.  However some of the
more observant Sunrisers were able to decipher the clues.  We had a grand celebration with cake and
kazoos.
Looking Back with Julie Fulkerson and The Birthday Boy (?)
Julie Fulkerson was our featured speaker last Friday. She began
by saying, “2012 seems like a really balanced number.”  As each new year begins, Julie likes to think
about the past. She shared some insights she gained while writing a history of
her relationship with her grandmother, whom she called “Nana”.
Julie was born in Arcata, at Trinity Hospital at 13th
and G Streets. (The site is now occupied by the New Fortune Chinese Restaurant.)
Gayle Karshner was her next-door neighbor as she grew up. Gayle, who passed
away last summer, was an avid local historian, and she encouraged Julie to
write about her parents and her grandparents. In her talk on Friday, Julie
focused on her Nana.  Her grandmother, “Didn’t
think about recycle/reuse … she just did it.”
Julie asked us to think back to our first memories of Arcata
— for some, it was the earliest memory indeed; for others, it was their first
glimpse of the city once called Uniontown. 
She asked us to imagine our surroundings so many years ago, which meant
we were in the Dry Goods store in Jacoby Storehouse.  She pointed out that, in those days, we would
have seen even more bars on the Plaza.
Julie described her Nana as a “tough cookie.”  She was divorced when Julie’s father was
still young.  She always worked hard,
initially as a cook.  Her handwritten
recipe book, which still survives, includes recipes for very basic items — how
to make baking powder, for example. Always frugal, Nana was able to save and
purchase her home outright.  She always
rented a room to a Humboldt State student to help defray costs.
Julie lived about a mile from her Nana on Fickle Hill.  Usually the first thing Nana would ask Julie
to do when she arrived, would be to feed the rabbits.  Julie has very vivid memories of helping her
Nana as she worked.  She described it as
a quiet, contemplative time; there was no TV, no radio not even much
conversation.
Julie’s father always had a gift for playing the piano.  Although Nana was a very serious woman, she
allowed young Charlie to supplement the family income by playing jazz
piano.  In many venues.  In the 40s, after he attended San Jose State
College, Charlie returned to Arcata.  The
family moved to the Fickle Hill home, and Charlie planted his first stand of
apple trees.  This became a trademark for
Charlie; when the family moved to Trinidad, within days of the move, the apple
trees were in place.
“We get so much from the people who went before us,”
Julie told us.  Whether we knew our grandparents
or not, we get a lot from our ancestors. 
“I realize,” she continued, “I wish I had asked my
parents more questions.”
Years ago, Julie was able to buy back Nana’s house at 17th
and I Streets.  She said she hoped that
Nana might recognize the values she instilled in Julie — after all, Julie purchased
it outright.