R.S. Chamber Hosting Annual Installation

As the Running Springs Area Chamber of Commerce has done for decades their annual installation of officers and recognition dinner is set for Saturday, October 28. this annual event will be held at Snow Valley Mountain Resort on Hwy.18 in Running Springs.
From 6 to 7 p.m. a silent auction and social time will be held so come early and enjoy the fun. Come and see all the great items you can bid on. Trust me, our local businesses have been involved so a big “thank you” to all of them who support this event that helps the chamber of commerce each year. Bidding on (and hopefully winning) the donated items is a great way to pick up early holiday gifts. For years I have purchased items and let me tell you, it’s a great way to not panic as the holiday months get closer and closer. Just think, you might be able to cut down on crazy trips to stores that get crazier and crazier each year as the holidays arrive.
The delicious prime rib dinner buffet, prepared by (local) Bacchus Catering, will be held at 7 p.m. This local restaurant (Blondie’s) always puts a lot of time and effort to make sure the food is extra-good for this event.
The cost is $30 per person and reservations need to be made and paid for by October 23. By the way, if you desire a vegetarian dinner you need to let the chamber of commerce know ASAP with your request.

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Looking Back……

I have been having the most wonderful time the past few months as I go through so many of my old newspapers. I was the original owner and editor of The Alpenhorn newspaper and I have many of my old newspapers. It truly is fun to look through them and remember about the early and late 1980s when the Golden Oaks was formed, when real estate was booming and when we had lots and lots of snow in the winters, ect., ect. ect.
One of the most important events that took place in the winter was “Winterfest” and boy, was it fun. Back in the day we could had a lot of different events. Naturally, there was downhill skiing at Snow Valley and great cross-country skiing at Rim Nordic which is directly across the highway from Snow Valley. At that time several of the ski instructors came down the snowy slopes at night,holding some type of flares. It was so beautiful to see people “shooshing” down the slopes in a beautiful formation with the flares (or whatever else you can call them).
Winterfest consisted of several different events that revolved, naturally, about snow.
Ahhhhhhhhhh, in so many ways, those were the “good old days” or nights. Perhaps there are people out there who would like to help….our chamber of commerce and the Arrowbear Lions Club members really are the only local organizations so perhaps people reading this might get interested in helping.

Another Fun “Post” From Pete Shaw in 1995

When I started The Alpenhorn newspaper in Running Springs so many years ago I was so lucky to have my friend, Pete Shaw, write and send me a column for each paper. I never knew what he would write and sometimes it was funny and sometimes it was lovely and sentimental. Fortunately I have many of his stories so I am starting to print some of them. This one is hilarious (as so many were) so enjoy!

********MISS WADDLE’S CLASS********

“The scene is a 5th grade classroom. Johnny Sauer has been nominated for class treasurer and is being questioned by Priscilla (P), the class “brain and Miss Waddles “pet.”
P: We have some serious questions regarding your qualifications for the classroom position.”
J: “What did you say?
P: “We’re not sure you should be the treasurer.”
J: Why not?
P:“We are concerned about your character and integrity.”
J”What are they?”
P:”Character and integrity.”
J:”Character is good moral status or constitution.
P: Integrity is soundless of moral character.
J:”Have I got some of that stuff?”
P: “That’s what we’re attempting to find out.”
j: “Well,go ahead!”
P: Johnny Sauer, on August 4, did you take a sip from your mother’s wine cooler?”
J: Ya, but it was a really hot day and there was cold drips comin’ down the side of the bottle and it was berry flavor, an’it just looked so good. I mean,ya’ know it was just one sip.
P: On October 20 did you lick the foam off the top of your father’s beer can?

J:Ya, but we were wood cuttin’ and it was real hot an my dad just laughed. He wasn’t mad about it!”
P: “Jonny Sauer, did you trade one Yogi Berra baseball card for Willy Spinks whole card collection?
J:Yeh, what’s wrong with that?
J: Willy wanted that Yogi Berra card bad. Do you know who Yogi Berra is?
P: “That’s not important. Did you, on Halloween night 1988 kiss Mary Spooner on the lips?
J: “ya, but she had a Snow White mask on and she couldn’t even feel it.”
P: “It’s my understanding you weren’t even going steady and that you offered her a Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup to go through with the act.”
J: “Ya, that’s right! She took it too even after I told her the deal was off after she kept her mask on.”

P: “Johnny Sauer, it is obvious to me that after reviewing your drinking habits, business dealings and relationships with girls that you are unqualified to hold the position of class treasurer. I shall report my findings to Miss Waddle and the entire student council.”
J: Wait a minute. How about the time you wrote rhododendrum on the palm of your hand to win the spelling bee an’ day you cheat in tetherball an’ everybody knows it. An’ you gossip so bad about your friends.
Yesterday when Miss Waddle walked past in class I heard you whisper to Nancy that she had a big …….. “Stop! This hearing’s is officially over!”

Annual Pine Cone Festival at Rim Nordic

Well, the annual Pine Cone Festival is right around the corner on February 14 so bring your “sweetie” or great friends and children and come have a great time.
This year a new venue has been selected and it’s the perfect spot for this fun “hurray” to the pine cones.”
Rim Nordic Ski is easy to find on Hwy. 18 because it is about four or five miles east from Running Springs and it’s across from Snow Valley Ski Resort. The hours are 10:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. so come and see all the displays of what can be done with the “common” pine cone. It really is a fun event so bring the family (but leave the dogs and cats home or in the car). This year the Pine Cone Olympics will be featured.
Unless you live in the mountains I’m going to guess that you’ve never been to a pinecone festival so come and have fun and enjoy the creativity of locals and out-of-towners who are having a great time.
Just think, if you are every on Jeopardy and they have questions about pinecones you’ll have a change at winning. While that probably isn’t going to happen (but who knows?) you’ll have a great time at this event!

“From Behind the Oak” by Pete Shaw in 1987

When I was the “birth mother” of The Alpenhorn newspaper in Running Springs so many years ago I was so lucky to have so much support by so many people who contributed to the paper. Without a doubt my longtime friend Pete Shaw’s columns each week sold more newspapers and had more people asking for more than any other wonderful stories I got to write. I never knew whether he would be writing something hilariously funny or something beautifully sentimental. I have come across some of his stories so watch for them. His column was called “From Behind the Oak!”+
Enjoy and look for more as I find them!

“At this moment I’m perched on a rock in a most remote spot on Keller Peak. Next to me is my tape player pumping out Strauss waltzes and to the glorious strains of the Der Flidermaus Waltz. I’m taking in the glory of the day.
The morning is stunning. Clean azure skies, Coulter pine boughs bent under the weight of huge cones oozing sap, oaks dropping the grape-like pinkish red cluster that will soon form brightly bright early spring leaves. The high hush of breezes bring a softness to the scene.
From time to time I hold my ballpoint pen aloft and direct the music in flamboyant Leonard Bernstein style to an audience of stellar jays, gray squirrels and a large gathering of red ants. They are not an attentive audience but then again, they don’t appear to judge me either.
My fellow humans might form some opinions of a paunchy, late-middle-aged male in faded magenta shorts vigorously keeping the tempo for the Vienna Symphony Orchestra with a leaky pen, occasionally interrupting his performance with a Hit off diet Dr. Pepper. During these breaks I fill another cheek with sunflower seeds and flick an ant off my calf. Call it spring madness but I feel but I feel such a great exhilaration with the season.

A magnificent spring morning and visions of an 18th century ballroom on a full moon night; floor to ceiling french doors fling open to catch warm breezes as fresh young men and women swirl about the great floor to “Tales of Vienna Woods”
transfixed in infatuated games.

OOps, I just tipped my Dr. Pepper over. As I reached for the rolling can my tattered waist string broke in my ancient shorts. The result was a posterior view that I’m sure repulsed at least one innocent squirrel who had come closer to snag a sunflower seed.

My ballpoint baton is turning my fingerprints sticky blue; the batteries are fading making the whole performance,and the effects have finally reached the bloodstream. A courageous young red ant has succeeded in taking a small piece out of my calf.

The moemnt has passed as do all such moments but I have felt a half of pulsating blood; deep breaths of clear morning air and a profound, historical fantasy. That ain’t bad for a man battered by more than five decades of life.
Ah, there’s no fool like an old fool but it beats being normal and distinguished.

Remembering Skip Borg: Mountain Man and his Clock Shop! This story was written in 1995. Enjoy!

I know that this post is very late but as I have been going over so many of my old newspapers. As the original owner and editor Of The Alpenhorn newspaper in Running Springs so many years ago I am so thrilled to find so many of my old newspaper. I was surprised today as I went through the April 13, 1995 issue that I had written a wonderful story about “Mountain Man” aka Skip Borg. It’s rather long but everyone loved Skip so it’s one of those stories that I treasure. He was a wonderful man so I hope he’s watching out from Heaven and knows he was well loved and is missed.The story I wrote was entitled “Mountain Man Opens Mountain Man Clock Shop.” Although it was several months since his death when I found this story I wrote so long ago I wanted all of you to know about this wonderful man we all miss so much!

This is the story I wrote about Skip so long ago. Sadly, his wonderful clock shop is no longer there but oh, he (and his work) was wonderful. Remember, this story was printed many years ago in my newspaper, far, far before he died. I loved writing this particular story and I loved him dearly. I like to think he’s up in heaven having a great time helping those angels learn how to keep time with his great clocks.

“The next time you get ticked off because your antique or other valuable (or sentimental) clock doesn’t work, there’s an easy solution. Take it to Skip Borg at Mountain Man Clock Shop in Running Springs because he loves to hear clocks ticking properly. In fact,if one of the clocks in his shop isn’t ticking correctly or on time, he can quickly pick out the culprit. Voila! No more ticked off customer or clock!

Tucked into a corner in the building occupied by One Stop Entertainment on Hilltop Blvd. (across from Borderline restaurant) the small shop is filled with clocks needing repairs as well and hand-carved
Black Forest cuckoo clocks from Germany that are for sale.

After fixing clocks at home in their basement, Skip and his wife Bobbi their

Most clocks don’t run because of neglect, Skip says. People forget to have them cleaned and oiled and eventually the gears don’t mesh well and the clocks either stop running or they slow down considerably. then the clock has to be taken apart and cleaned,something Skip and Barbi recommend that should be done every three to five years. Skip has been repairing clocks for about eight years, after apprenticing with Running Springs resident (and Master Clock worker) Ivan Godwin and his brother-in-law Dick willy of San Bernardino.

For several years Skip was a corrections officer at the California Institute for Women when he had a heart attack. Since his attack was job-related he had to be re-trained in another line of work. He had already been “messing” with clocks so he decided to take it up for a living. He will often spend hours working with a time piece and although many people would find it tedious he thoroughly enjoys his work! With his recent death I thought it was appropriate to tell the world about Skip who truly was a wonderful man!

Need a Laugh? Read This Post!

I was so fortunate to have such wonderful people help when I started (and continued for many years) the Alpenhorn newspaper in Running Springs. Yep, I was its “birth mother” so to speak and throughout the many years I owned it I had so many wonderful people who helped. Without a doubt each “deadline” day I would wait to see what my wonderful friend Pete Shaw would have written for the paper. During several of those years he was principal at CHE so some of his stories rotated about school fun but he also wrote many, many stories about life in the mountains. Probably my favorite story was called “Vacation” so enjoy……..Trust me, you’ll love it!

“I bought a tent trailer this summer. These new-fangled devices are advertised as a miracle of technology. They fold down almost to suitcase size and are spring loaded to suddenly expand into a room a the Ritz. Whatever happened to truth in advertising laws?
Anyway, we set out with high hopes for our week at the beach on Friday morning. The trailer was packed, the car was serviced and my wife and and his two friends were safely buckled into the seats. As we swung around the corner we waved goodbye to friends and neighbors.
Three minutes later, just past Chateau Pine restaurant, I realized we had a problem: our trailer was attempting to pass our vehicle.It was frantically swerving from side-to-side. “What’s that” I hear something strange,” my wife remarked. This reaction was comparable to standing on the deck of the Titanic and quietly exclaiming, “What was that odd scraping sound, dear?”
My first reaction was to hit the brakes. The result was that the trailer slid under the rear of the Toyota and imbedded itself solidly in place. We came to an abrupt stop in the middle of the highway on the end of a rather dangerous curve.
My first initial reaction was to simply walk into the forest to avoid the ensuing embarrassment and humiliation. However, that would be a particularly spineless act with my wife, children, his friends sitting in frozen posture in the car in the middle of the highway.
As I emerged from my vehicle, cars swerved madly to avoid us, their drivers and passengers yelling and gesturing as they passed, I was a man in real conflict. On one hand I hoped none would recognize me and I pulled my baseball cap down to my ears and adjusted my dark glasses in an attempt to become unrecognizable. On the other hand, I needed help.
Luckily, Dave Featherstone and Jeff Hubbard stopped to assist me in m dark hour of need. Dave explained that I had not successfully put the hitch fully over the ball and locked it into place. That certainly seemed simple enough. How could I have failed in such a simple task?!
I climbed back into the car and tried to reassure the passengers that all was well, safe and secure. This attempt to exude confidence came from a man who had recently claimed to fix a blow dryer only to plug it in and have it pop and throw a flame that ignited the chest of his T-shirt. Needless to say, my credibility was still at a rather low point.
We finally arrived at El Capitan State Beach campground. Families were returning from a day at the beach as we pulled in.
In order to fit into Space Number 17 it required that I back up the trailer and thread into the eye of a needle of a small parking area. It was going to be simple because the salesman had told me it was as easy as pushing a baby carriage.
I shifted into reverse and started backing up. The trailer began to lurch back and forth, left and right. My attempts to correct and over-correct resulted in invasions into other campsites. Campers scrambled to save aluminum chairs, Hibachis and ice chests as the “Madman in the Toyota” attempted to gain control. Again,I searched for a forest to disappear into but there was only low underbrush in the area. All other occupants of the vehicle had slid below the window levers of the car.
The disastrous beginning of our trip was somewhat ameliorated by the discovery that we had picked a glorious campsite. Beautiful fragrant blooming bushes surrounded us and a perfect site for the boy’s tent was discovered in the underbrush. Odd that the other campers had not realized how ideal a spot they had overlooked. Camping Rule #1: Always be suspicious of a choice campsite that is rejected by others in a full campground.By the morning a line of Poison Oak rash began to spread down my arm and between my fingers. The blossoming bushes opened in the morning sun and thousands of bees descended upon them in a gluttonous frenzy of pollen gathering and they became very irritated with ignorant humans who had the audacity to invade their nectar paradise.
Throughout the night we were convinced that we would be pulverized by the Amtrak trains that we were sure were thundering through the rear of our trailer.
Sleeping became a nightmare. At some point in the wee small hours of the morning, I fired up the Coleman lantern. I looked about for something to read and could only find one of those Gothic romance novels I so unmercifully kidded my wife about. “How can you spend hours of your time reading that stuff. What a waste!” You know, the ones that have bursting bodices and Charles Atlas chests on the cover that bound 700 pages of ridiculous fantasies.
Three hours later I was hooked! Would Galina Borishinskey, that half-Russian gypsy Jezebel lure Mr. Hope-Brown, the vicar’s young assistant, into her web of seduction? Only a few more pages would tell!
The Coleman lantern sputtered, flickered and died. In my obsessed state, I groveled for a flashlight. Thank goodness I had bought new Duracell batteries; surely that would last at least another 100 more pages.
Six more days, two more Duracell’s later, we prepared to leave. At 5:03 a.m. the batteries died. Mr. Hope Brown had “fallen” and the sun started up.
Six more days, 20 more Duracell’s later, we prepared to leave. We had hobbled around on sunburned feet, collected enough oil and beach tar to save our driveway, used showers and bathrooms that I was convinced were breeding grounds for every bacteria that carried dreaded communicable diseases known to mankind, had been thoroughly trashed by a 12-year-old in our Hearts tournament and almost perished in an attempt to close up our trailer.
Our fellow campers cheered as we left and drove out. My sunburned head glowed, a few pieces of canvas fluttered from the sides of the foolproof fold-up, another poison oak blister popped out but we were headed home.
We collapsed into our beds four hours later and fell into a deep slumber, un-interrupted by the Super Chief.
The next morning I walked down the driveway to pick up my paper. My neighbor pulled out and rolled down her window. “How as your vacation? “Just great!,” I replied.
After she drove off, I looked skyward and asked for forgiveness. Dagwood Bumstead had fibbed again!