Popeye’s Chicken has taken out a conditional use permit from the city to place a business structure at the corner of Cecil Avenue and Princeton Street, 1603 Cecil Ave., taking the place of the Trujillo’s Automotive business.

Popeye’s, according to my scanning of the Bakersfield phone book, has four such businesses in Bakersfield plus four others with names that are similar.

Students from Delano High will have their closest eatery to the campus, but I believe that only upper class students who have signed paperwork with parent signatures are allowed off campus at noon.

However, right after school there will probably be an influx from Delano High and Cecil Avenue Middle School, at least for the first few weeks of the opening.

My source has no information on when the franchise might be built and ready, but I assume in the summer or early fall.

I am curious and assume that there will be a drive-thru, and I wonder from what direction vehicles would enter and exit because it could lead to a traffic problem at that intersection.

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The local cemetery district had its first meeting of the new year, scheduled Jan. 13, while the Delano City Council was to gather Jan. 6.

The city Community Alliance group is to meet the first Tuesday of the month on Feb. 4.

Delano Chamber of Commerce will be holding its 10th annual Crab Feed, probably in late February, at a site still to be secured.

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Directors are selling tickets for the 56th annual Delano Sports Dinner, the main fundraiser of the Greater Delano Area Youth Foundation.

Mario Millan, head football coach at Robert F. Kennedy High School, will be the chief speaker.

Person of the Year, selected by the Youth Foundation, and a special award winner will be revealed.

Directors who have the $15 tickets include foundation President David Amaya, Ginda Adkins at the Chamber of Commerce, Richard Torrez, Stu and Joan Collins, Gilbert Martinez, Jerva Winn and myself.

Collins, the longtime treasurer of the organization, who was lured out of retirement on the board, said that memberships at the close of December numbered only 42, far short of the nearly 200 who existed in the 1960s when the foundation was first formed.

Directors are searching for donations of raffle prizes for the dinner. Any director may be contacted to accept a donation.

°°°

Perusing my notebook, I realized that I had never passed along some information that I gathered early in the football season.

I ran across Ray Arvizu, a Delano High graduate who said his .570 batting average for the Tigers in 1990 was the best in Kern County for his senior season.

°°°

Snow Ball is the theme of the winter formal that is open to students of Robert F. Kennedy, Delano High, and Cesar E. Chavez high schools. The event will take place 7 to 10 p.m. Jan. 25 at the Kennedy gym.

Ticket charge is $20 from now until Jan. 23. No tickets will be sold at the door. Students attending must complete a parent permission slip and gain attendance and discipline office clearance.

“Jaime y Ferny” and DJ Jakey Jake will be the entertainment.

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It has been since their high school days that I last saw twins Kelli and Amy Davis, who had opened their newest boutique, Native Fox Collective, just before Christmas. For 80 years they had been at the Fox Theater. Their new boutique is at 18th and H streets in Bakersfield.

The Davis twins were students as freshmen in an English class that I taught, as well as talented members of the Delano High cheer squad during years when the team won the county cheer championship at the Kern County Fair, a cheer event that no longer takes place.

I would love to stop by their business, but it might be strange for an old man to walk into such a store.

Their mom, Linda, used to work at the then-Delano Thrifty Drug next to what is now Tony’s Pizza, and she was a longtime member of Delano High’s Booster Club. Pat Davis was a mechanic locally.

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Two obituaries in The Bakersfield Californian paper in late December drew my attention.

One was Allen Wayne Clark, 66, who, with his wife, Diana, had celebrated their 45th anniversary in early December.

A graduate of Delano High School, he worked on local farms and worked horses with his dad, later worked for Vons and retired after 45 years.

He was a member of a group of four men active in the junior livestock shows of the Delano event held during Harvest Holidays weekends, and Allen and others who made the event a success were one year honored as Grand Marshals of the festival.

Just a week later I saw Charlyn Jo Rice’s notice. She was a sister of Jacqueline Grimes, who graduated in my 1954 class. Charlyn was a beautiful young woman, I recall, who was a cheerleader and married Creth Rice, my class’ senior president and a three-sport athlete whose half mile time still stands as the school record at Delano High. They had a son, Jerry, and daughter, Lori, in Wasco where they resided.

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Back in November, I learned of the celebration of life for Lowell Syers, a neighbor and a former student of mine at Delano High, but I missed the event because I was waiting for a man from Porterville who was to do some work in my bathroom. I waited from early morning until his arrival after 4 p.m. and thus missed the Syers occasion.

From dad, Keith, and mom, Joye, I received a letter that stated, “We are blessed! We enjoyed our son for 51 years on planet earth. We now look forward to being with him in eternity.” He was buried at the National Cemetery in Canton, Ga. He served his country, flying for the Army in Desert Storm and Afghanistan, eventually becoming a captain for Southwest Airlines. He and his wife have two adult children.

Many classmates and former family friends gathered at the First Assembly of God Church to remember Lowell.

°°°

On a recent stop at Smart and Final, I headed to a check-out stand and my eyes met a young man heading toward me. I had to ask his name and learned it was Timothy Nunez.

I recall him as student body president at Delano High and a three-sport athlete, but that was back when he had a short haircut.

Tim is attending Sacramento State and said he is going to try to be an assistant football coach at Sac State.

°°°

It’s the start of a new year, but ALREADY the high school basketball season is nearing an end.

Whether you have a relative or friend on a team, you still might wish to see the Cesar Chavez varsity boys basketball team and/or Delano High’s varsity boys basketball team. If you’re present by 6:30 p.m., you will be on time for the varsity game. If you wish to see freshmen play, be present by 4 p.m., and 5 p.m. for junior varsity.

Chavez is to host Kennedy on Jan. 27, to entertain Wasco on Feb. 5 and to play on Feb. 13 at Kennedy.

Head coach Alfonso Hernandez and assistant Nick Guzman have assembled a powerhouse again. In an early season game the team lost to Delano, 104-75, but Chavez won a rematch by something like 30 points. The first game in the Fresno tournament during winter break was a 77-64 win over Clovis to lift the Chavez record to 8-2 and drop Clovis to 9-5. Chavez, whose main challenger in the South Sequoia League is to be Shafter, won the league crown last year and returns its top two scorers, Fernando Carranza and Adan Arredondo.

Delano has its best opportunity in many years to challenge in the East Yosemite League. DHS has home games remaining with Porterville on Jan. 22, Mission Oak on Jan. 24, Tulare Union on Jan. 30 and Monache on Feb. 5.

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