Faces and Places: Hollywood Park Neighborhood 4th of July Parade

The annual 4th of July Hollywood Park Neighborhood Parade featured a vintage 1920s fire truck, which led the parade through the streets. Dressed in red, white and blue, some residents and their families marched the parade route, while neighbors cheered them on from their front yards. Along the parade route, there was a lemonade stand, a mimosa stop, and a World War II veteran who waved the flag at the parade goers. Like every year, snacks and refreshments were served at the end of the parade at Leonardi DaVinci School.

Every 15 Minutes Mock Drill at New Technology High School

Designed to enhance teen awareness on the effects of drug and alcohol related automobile accidents, Argonaut Park, which neighbors New Technology High School, was transformed the scene of a deadly collision on May 1.

With a New Tech teen laying flat on top of the hood of a car and his “brains” splattered there, the simulation is intended to increase the students’ awareness of potential outcomes associated with such decision making. While it was just a simulation, student responded with utter shock, as evidenced by some of these photographs. There were real police and firefighters supporting the event as well as the California Highway Patrol and Office of Traffic Safety who was there taking a proactive role.

According to The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration, 12,998 people were killed in drunk driving crashes in 2007. This represents a 3.7 percent decline in drunk driving fatalities from 2006. On the one hand, it’s positive that fatalities are declining especially – the 15 percent decrease among underage drunk driving fatalities. On the other hand, 12,998 families still received a visit from law enforcement, telling them their loved one wasn’t coming home due to an entirely preventable crime.

Celebrating the past, present, and future through Aztec dance

Troupe performed at Cinco de Mayo event in South Land Park

As the feathers of an Aztec headdress frames the face of the woman serpent, Irene Ramirez, a family of dancers surround their leader in a ceremoniously tribute to their ancestral culture. Collectively known as Kalpulli Xihuacoatl, the dance troupe represents the past, present, and future; and, as the dancers come and go, as they often do, they are always a part of the family Irene built in Sacramento as a positive avenue for youth.

Currently, included in the troupe is an adopted trio of young boys — little 4-year-old Carlos Hernandez; Alberto Hernandez, 5; Samuel Hernandez, 10; their father, Adan Gutierrez; 16-year-old Chris Perez; 20-year-old American River College student Amanda Nunn; Raelene Arballo, and, of course, the group’s founder, Irene.
Performing at a Cinco de Mayo celebration on Saturday, May 3 at Florez Bar & Grill in the South Hills Shopping Center, Kalpulli Xihuacoatl’s performance began with an invocation to the four directions, utilizing a conch shell (which is used like a horn to announce the start of a fight) and kopalli (traditional incense).

Irene has dedicated her adult life to working with young people and teaching them the traditions of Aztec dancing. Xihuacoatl is one of many under the direction of Pedro Espana, the Capitan General of the parent group, Quinto Sol that is based in Axiochiapan, Mexico.

In an interview with the Land Park News after Saturday’s performance, Irene said she started the group after a divorce and she searched for an outlet to keep her daughter grounded. “I didn’t want her getting lost,” Irene said.
After Irene researched on her own her roots and learned about Aztec dancing and its significance, she found Pedro who was in Sacramento at the time, spreading his knowledge of the culture.

Upon discussing the personal impact the dancing has said on her life and those close around her, she said: “I see this as something positive. There are so many broken families with kids who wouldn’t have gone to college. My daughter could have been lost, but she’s well grounded. Christopher’s brother was almost a gang member, and now he’s a productive member of society. He’s a father now. This is our future,” she said as she pointed at the young troupe members.


Faces and Places: Art show at Shepard Garden Art Center

Twenty-seven local artists participated in the annual Coldwell Banker Metro-Office art show held at Shepard Garden Art Center on the evening of Friday, April 25. Hand-picked by the Coldwell Banker Sacramento-Metro office, fine art – mostly oil-based and watercolor paintings – filled the historic venue, as did wine, food, and music by guitarist Jon Merriman. As Sue Olson of Coldwell Banker told the East Sacramento News: “We have a lot of talent in our immediate neighborhood and this event is definitely a happening.”


Faces and Places: Food Truck Expo Tahoe Park

Neighbors enjoyed each other’s company and good food from various food trucks on Wednesday, Sept. 25 at Tahoe Park. Just along the perimeter of the park was a large banner informing neighbors that the event will be held every fourth Wednesday of the month. The monthly events are organized by Councilmember Kevin McCarty, Supervisor Phil Serna, SactoMoFo and the Tahoe Park Neighborhood Association. Tahoe Park is located at 3501 59th St., Sacramento.


Faces and Places: Greenhaven Lutheran celebrates ‘Children’s SONSHINE’

Families enjoyed beautiful fall weather at Greenhaven Lutheran Church’s “Children’s SONSHINE Celebration” on Saturday, Sept. 28. The free community event included pony rides, a petting zoo, a bounce house, carnival games, face painting and an opportunity to have fun and meet neighbors.


Pocket Parade 2013

Faces and Places: The McKinley Playground grand opening

Thank you to our wonderful community for bringing back the beloved playground to McKinley Park. It couldn’t have been done without you. Since the grand opening, held Wednesday, July 31, so many children have had the opportunity to enjoy the beautiful new playground. The photos here show people working on the final touches of the rebuild and others show the children who enjoyed playing there on opening day.

Faces and Places: Greenhaven Cabana’s Fourth of July celebration

The Greenhaven Cabana Club North celebrated the Fourth of July with their traditional activities.  The group started the day with participation in the Pocket-Greenhaven Fourth of July Parade.  Spirited lifeguards and members shared candy and club information with the crowd. The celebration continued at the club, 6207 Riverside Blvd., where young boat builders designed and built their own Styrofoam ships to sail across the pool.  Prizes were given for Most Creative Boat, Most Patriotic Boat, Fastest Boat, Most Original Boat and Coolest Boat.  Activities also included diving for coins and make-your-own ice cream sundaes.

Faces and Places: Fire Station 11 held open house

Families met their friendly neighborhood firefighters at this year’s Fire Station 11 open house on Saturday, July 6. They reportedly had an excellent turnout and CERT, an all volunteer organization dedicated to educating and supporting the community in disaster preparedness, was on hand giving away fire alarms and Co2 alarms. Fire Station 11 is located at Havenside and Florin.