Hope and healing
Bringing fruit trees to town
Imagine walking down a nature trail and picking a few choice cherries, pears, apples, nectarines, or some other type of fruit. This is something I envision in the center of Gardnerville. We have a thriving Community Garden with proven success primarily because volunteers are the heart of the program. Moving to long term fruit trees appears to be a logical step.
There are challenges to this vision and steps to be taken. This is not intended to be a large orchard or commercially driven but rather pockets of fruit trees along the trail system. I foresee water-wise pocket orchards with drip irrigation that are central to the town and accessible by the nature trail paths. Possible locations for the groves are in the 30 acre open space between The Ranch and Heritage Park and along the Martin Slough Nature Trail. Tree varieties should be appropriate for this climate zone (6b) and public recommendations, donations, and volunteers would be appreciated. Planning of the orchards will be collaborative in nature and designed for stage implementation unless someone steps up to fund the project. These pocket orchards could be a good type of memorial for our loved ones giving back to our community. Gardnerville is a Tree City USA member and the pocket orchards would complement that designation, adding diversity to our 38 species tree list.
Trees take time to reach full maturity so let’s start a conversation on what you envision for our town.
What’s wrong with Nevadans
The Commonwealth of Massachusetts has “Question 4” on their November ballot which mirrors Nevada’s “Question 2”—the commercialization of legalized marijuana in the two states. Both initiatives were drafted and are promoted by the Marijuana Policy Project (Washington, D.C.) and are each locally sponsored by a “ Committee to Regulate and Tax Marijuana Like Alcohol”.
Surprisingly, the “push back” to “legalization” for the commercial marijuana industry has been much more emphatic in “liberal” Massachusetts than in Nevada. In May, Republican Governor Charlie Baker made common cause with three leading Democrats —Boston Mayor Marty Walsh, House Speaker Robert DeLeo and Attorney General Maura Healey. Together, they formed an opposition organization –“The Committee for a Safe and Healthy Massachusetts”.
Currently, 120 bipartisan state legislators( 84 D’s and 36 R’s) have signed up in opposition to “Q 4” in the Bay State—while only 10 legislators have endorsed it . Moreover, opposition to “Q 4” has been registered from important and diverse groups throughout the state: the Massachusetts Medical Society, the Massachusetts Hospital Association, the Conference of Boston’s Teaching Hospitals, the Massachusetts Municipal Association, the Massachusetts Association of School Superintendents, Construction Industries of Massachusetts, the Associated Industries of Massachusetts, the Retailers Association of Massachusetts, the Massachusetts chapter of the National Association of Mental Illness, the Massachusetts Chiefs of Police Association, the Massachusetts Sheriffs Association and all 21 District Attorneys.
As a result, Massachusetts public opinion on “Q 4” has shifted dramatically. An initial poll in the state had “legalization” leading with 57% support. Two recent Massachusetts polls show it now losing – by 10% most currently.
In contrast, support for “Question 2” in Nevada has been limited to a very small number of state legislators, marijuana champion Senator Tick Segerblom and nine others. But opposition to “Q 2” has been muted. Governor Brian Sandoval has voiced opposition and Senator Harry Reid said he was “very, very dubious and concerned” about recreational legalization. While formal opposition is growing, there are still many Nevada officeholders and organizations yet to take a position.
Voters need to read the 13 page initiative on the ballot as Question 2. It’s a “business plan” written by the marijuana industry to exclusively benefit themselves. It’s provisions include a self-serving industry overreach providing no local government “opt-outs” for any of Nevada’s 17 counties , unlike provisions found in Colorado’s legalization law and in Nevada’s medical marijuana law. Section 14 of the initiative actually criminalizes personal cultivation within 25 miles of a retail marijuana establishment. It’s “phony legalization” drafted by the commercial marijuana industry.
“Liberal” Massachusetts knows what’s at issue and their state has come together united in opposition to the commercial marijuana legalization initiative. If Massachusetts can do it, what’s the matter with more “conservative” Nevada?
Hope and healing was great
The Douglas Center for Hope and Healing recently held their 2nd annual Camp Hope at beautiful Round Hill Resort in Zephyr Cove, Lake Tahoe. This year we accommodated 19 campers ages 7-17 who attended our one day event. We offered a variety of activities designed to help the children and teens share their losses, receive support, learn healthy coping skills and honor and commemorate their loved ones. It was an interactive day mixed with grief work, fun icebreakers, art activities and beach play. This day wouldn’t have been possible without the tireless effort of our fabulous volunteers: Corie Ball, Patti Snyder, Coleen Lawrence, Natalie Miller, Briana Hodges, Brittany Thomson, Ava and Leah Ramsey-Kruse, Julie Lundergreen, Jordan Smith, Emilio Parga and Angel Littlefield. In addition, countless hours were put in by board members Amanda Johnson, Mickey Garcia, Mary Thomson, Ann Crockett and teen representative Jake Hougton in the planning and facilitating of the day’s events. Half of the campers were returnees from last year and half of them were new attendees. The grief center plans to continue offering the day camp free of charge to families every summer as long as funds allow. We would like to thank our generous donors whose contributions made this camp possible: Douglas County, the Dean Seeman Foundation in memory of Joyce Seeman and the Berger North Foundation.
Douglas Center for Hope and Healing