Gary Girard

Gary Girard.

A meeting is planned Tuesday at Delano’s DADD, 612 Main St., at 3 p.m. of the Kern County Homeless Coalition in reference to what the needs are in Delano.

Activist Claribel Gutierrez said that other representatives from throughout Kern County will be present to help identify problems in the county and possible solutions. She said it was hoped that schools, organizations, and businesses of the local community would attend to participate in discussions.

Mike Gutierrez, director of the Delano DADD, and county Supervisor David Couch are two of the leaders who have arranged the gathering.

Claribel, who has solicited help from the community to help provide food and other needs for many of the homeless, said she estimated there were about 100 homeless in the Delano area.

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The annual Delano Police Department’s “Shop with a Cop” event is scheduled for Saturday at the Delano Walmart. Officer Mario Nunez enlists the help of many of the department’s officers as well as Explorer scouts to carry out the event.

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On Dec. 12, the Toys for Tots distribution will take place at the Memorial Park exhibit building. The same day will be decoration of the Heritage Park buildings.

Community Connections’ distribution of 100 food baskets was to take place Dec. 1.

A distribution of Toys for Tots in McFarland is planned Sunday, Dec. 16.

Although the Delano Police Department’s drive for coats and jackets for youngsters has passed its deadline, donations are still being accepted at the department from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays.

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Swearing in of three members of the Delano City Council is to take place at a special meeting on Monday at 5:30 p.m. at Delano City Hall.

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A Christmas party and fundraiser for the Delano Chamber of Commerce is planned Friday, Dec. 14, at the Aviator Casino, 1225 Airport Drive, Delano.

The party buy-in of $60 includes a steak and lobster dinner. The re-buys and add-ons will be a $20 charge.

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Cancellation of the Western Band Association semi-finals scheduled Saturday, Nov. 17, at Robert F. Kennedy High School was one that affected thousands of people, yet there was no anger, reported Mrs. Terri Gonzalez, wife of Cesar E. Chavez band director Alex Gonzalez and the person who reached out to the association to gain the bid for the Delano schools.

She said it was unfortunate and definitely a letdown for the nearly 4,000 students who were to take part in the competition as well as their parents, directors, and others associated with the program. But those involved could understand the sponsors’ concerns in canceling the event because of bad air quality.

Just before the event was called off, she said that 3,888 students were set to participate from some 30 high schools. “We had 117 volunteers alone who were ready to assist with the operation of the event.”

One school, Gonzales said, had spent $32,000 on charter buses alone. Most of the schools had already arrived in Delano before learning of the cancellation, and they came from as far south as the San Diego area.

Delano band programs were to earn funds from the concessions and were able to return most of the items, she said. A T-shirt vendor was trying to sell online the shirts he had for sale.

Gonzalez indicated she would give it a “go” next year and try again to be the host school with the hope that there would not be forest fires leading to such bad air quality.

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Chris Farwell, an English teacher at Delano High, retired effective the Friday before Thanksgiving break. But he was back the next school week as a substitute teacher.

Farwell first taught English at Delano High and then homemaking at Cesar E. Chavez High (he is a qualified chef!) and in recent years has returned to English instruction at Delano High.

Farwell’s dad, Robert, who is now 99, still gets around well, said Chris. Robert Farwell was a colonel during World War II and was shot down over Berlin, and spent more than a year as a prisoner of war.

After the war and being in the workforce, he returned to the Pond area as that was the home grounds of his deceased wife, Sarah, one of four daughters of the late Ugo Sandrini. Another daughter, Mary, eventually married my mom’s brother, Glen Piland. That’s why Chris and I always call each other cousins!!.

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On a recent stop at Cesar E. Chavez before 7 a.m., I hoped to find a door open to put a note to the athletic director under his door. But I got lucky as I parked outside the administration building. Pulling up in his vehicle was principal Uriel Robles who kindly took the note for me. Robles was a baseball standout at Delano High and then was in administration in the local union school district and after being in administration at Robert F. Kennedy High he moved into administration at Delano High before being selected the principal for CCHS near the end of the last school year.

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Cesar E. Chavez High volleyball girls won the South Sequoia League varsity championship, but were denied a spot in the section playoffs, reportedly for a weak schedule.

The Chavez girls did win some respect in the all-league selections for volleyball. Karen Gutierrez was named the Most Valuable Player and Malaya Espiritu the Rookie of the Year for the SSL.

Kayla Sanchez and Mary Joe Rodriguez were both selected to the league first team and Leslie Velasco to the second team. Earning honorable mention were Nancy Robles, Yanely Rodriguez, and Samantha Gutierrez.

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At the Delano High football awards night, senior receiver and secondary defender Israel Valle received the “Tiger of the Year” statue from Victor Lopez of the sponsoring Topper’s Men’s Store.

Other varsity players honored were Valle as the Iron Man award winner; Sergio Gonzalez, Offensive Player of the Year; Ivan Zapata, the Defensive Player of the Year; Christopher Permejo, Osbaldo Orozco award; Adrian Medina, the Offensive Lineman of the Year; Arturo Gonzalez, Defensive Line of the Year; and coaches awards to Aaron Chavez, Anthony Murguia, and Nicholas Marin.

For the JV team the most valuable player was Fernando Nunez. Other award recipients were Ismael Delgado, offensive player; Fernando Rivera, defensive player; Rodrigo Palos, the Osbaldo Orozco award winner, Cristian Andrade, lineman of the year; and Oscar Silva, Iron Man award. Freshmen honored were Daniel Corrales for offense, Kevin Fernandez for defense, Andrew Carrasco as Osbaldo Orozco award winner, and Anthony Mojarro as lineman of the year.

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I ran into Stuart and Joan Collins as they stopped at the Chamber of Commerce one day and learned of the death of two prominent Delano business people.

Anita Brown of Bakersfield was the wife of Lee Brown who was co-owner of the San Joaquin Helicopters business in its early years. Mrs. Brown opened Lyons Fashion and Juney Moon’s Boutique in the mid-1980s, providing high-end ladies apparel for more than 10 years. She was preceded in death by husband Lee.

George Kouklis III was the manager of the Morris’ Department Store in Delano just before the store closed its doors after some 50 years in the community.

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Delano’s three public high schools will hold their annual Winter Formal, “Rustic Romance,” in the Cesar E. Chavez High School cafeteria on Saturday.

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The first basketball games of the season for Delano High School teams ended in victories for both boys and girls teams.

Veteran coach Aaron Estrada led the Tiger boys to a 67-66 victory after visiting South had taken an early 14-0 lead. Delano JV and freshman teams were also winners.

Delano girls also swept South on the Rebel court.

Gary Girard is a longtime resident of Delano. He can be reached at 661-725-8803.

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