SACRAMENTO, CA – With weather forecasts calling for nighttime temperatures to drop near freezing in parts of California, Dr. Ron Chapman, director of the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) and state public health officer, today urged Californians to protect themselves and their families from the hazards of extreme cold.

“Cold temperatures threaten individuals, their pets and their homes,” Chapman said.
“Exposure to severe cold temperatures can cause hypothermia and other serious health problems. Those at greatest risk are people who work outside, seniors, infants and people with chronic conditions.”

The warning signs of hypothermia are shivering, exhaustion, confusion, fumbling hands, memory loss, slurred speech and drowsiness. For infants, the warning signs are bright red, cold skin and very low energy. If you notice any of these signs, take the person’s temperature. If it is below 95 degrees, seek medical attention immediately and get the individual to a warm room or shelter.

Chapman recommends dressing warmly, eating well-balanced meals, and avoiding alcoholic or caffeinated beverages, as they cause the body to lose heat rapidly. Because cold weather puts an extra strain on the heart, he cautioned people with heart disease or high blood pressure to avoid overexerting themselves outside.

Chapman said it is important to plan ahead for possible power outages by keeping several days’ supply of food, water and medicine at home. Bring pets indoors or provide adequate shelter to keep them warm. Use space heaters and fireplaces appropriately to avoid household fires and the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning.

Visit CDPH’s Be Prepared California website for additional safety tips and information.


New vaccination rates among health care workers announced

SACRAMENTO, CA – Dr. Ron Chapman, director of the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) and state public health officer, today urged Californians to get immunized against influenza as part of National Influenza Vaccination Week, Dec. 4 to 10. Each year in the United States more than 200,000 people are hospitalized, and as many as 49,000 people die after contracting influenza.

Flu season begins each year in September and ends in March, and influenza vaccination is recommended for all Californians six months and older. This year’s vaccine will protect against the H1N1 strain, as well as H3N2 and influenza B.

“As this is National Influenza Vaccination Week, it is a perfect time to remind Californians to get a flu shot to protect themselves and others,” said Dr. Chapman. “Since the flu season typically peaks in December and January, I urge people to get immunized now.”

In conjunction with National Influenza Vaccination Week, CDPH released its annual report on vaccination rates among health care employees across the state. The report found that the employee vaccination rate has increased slightly from 62.6 percent in the 2009-10 flu season to 64.3 percent in 2010-11 for reporting hospitals. The report also shows that hospital reporting compliance grew to 98 percent in the 2010-11 flu season from 80.9 percent during the 2009-10 season.

“Vaccination of all health care workers is strongly recommended in order to prevent transmission of the illness to patients, especially those with long-term medical conditions who are at high-risk for serious complications from the flu,” said Dr. Chapman.

Agencies across the state are joining Dr. Chapman in promoting more vaccination of health care workers, through a letter distributed to all hospitals, long-term care facilities and physician groups throughout the state. Those joining Dr. Chapman including the California Hospital Association, California Association of Health Facilities, California Medical Association and organizations of health care professionals.

The report released by CDPH offers the following recommendations to improve influenza vaccination coverage among health care professionals.

· Hospitals should consider more rigorous influenza vaccination policies, such as mandatory participation or vaccination, to increase influenza vaccination percentages.

· Hospitals should ensure that influenza vaccination status is a requirement of contracts with physician groups, registry organizations, fellowships, and student training programs.

· Hospitals should account for the vaccination status of all non-employee healthcare personnel, including registry and contract personnel, students, and trainees.

· Hospitals should implement robust data collection and management systems to document the vaccination status of all healthcare personnel.

The Influenza Vaccination Report for 2010-11

Influenza Information

Joint letter


Click here for Attractions Spa website


GOLETA, CA - Los Padres National Forest officials announced plans to hold a job fair at the Temescal Fire Station at 4640 Piru Canyon Road in Piru on Saturday, December 17, from 10:00 am until 2:00 pm. The job fair is free of charge and open to all members of the public seeking information about seasonal wildland firefighting jobs with the U.S. Forest Service.

Representatives of Los Padres National Forest fire staff will share information and answer questions for anyone interested in pursuing a career as a wildland firefighter. Suppression equipment such as fire engines and other specialized gear used by wildland firefighters will also be on-hand. Information about vacant temporary and seasonal positions will be available along with instructions on the Internet-based application process.

The U.S. Forest Service is committed to recruiting highly skilled, competent and diverse workforce that reflects the publics we serve. The U.S. Forest Service is an equal opportunity employer. For additional information on the Temescal job fair, please contact the Temescal Fire Station at (805) 521-1707 or visit the Los Padres National Forest website at



County Treasurer-Tax Collector Steven Hintz is reminding property owners that the first installment of 2011/2012 Secured property taxes must be paid on or before Monday, December 12, 2011 this year, since the normal due date of December 10 falls on a Saturday.

Those who wait until one of the last few days can expect to find long lines if paying in person. Budget limitations have greatly reduced the number of seasonal personnel that have traditionally been used to help with the increased volume of work. “This cycle, we are hiring only 3 temporary staff, for an estimated seven days of help,” said Hintz.

The Internet has played a large part in the ability of the Tax Collector’s office to cope with staffing reductions. Last year at this time, the electronic payment option was quietly introduced to those who visited the department’s website. The choice allows taxpayers to have the convenience of printing out a receipt of payment from their computer for a modest transaction fee. The office website is

Property owners who mail in their payments are asked to send their payments as early as possible for most efficient processing. State law requires that the postmark be used to determine if a payment was timely.


National Kidney Foundation Serving Southern California and Southern Nevada Offers Free Health Screening in Santa Paula Through Kidney Early Evaluation Program (KEEP)

What: A free health screening for people at risk for kidney disease – area residents with diabetes, high blood pressure or a family history of kidney disease. A health risk appraisal, blood pressure measurement, blood and urine tests will be conducted on an anticipated 85 people throughout the day.

When: Saturday, December 3rd, 2011 from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm

Where: Santa Paula Community Center; 530 West Main St. Santa Paula, CA 93060

Who: Anyone over age 18 showing risk for Kidney Disease (above)

Why: Twenty six million Americans have chronic kidney disease and most don’t know it. In the Tri-Counties, one in eight people are suffering from chronic kidney disease. Early detection and treatment, including lifestyle changes and medications, may SLOW or PREVENT its progression to kidney failure and lessen the risk of cardiovascular disease.

"I owe my health to these screenings," Cynthia Mullon told us with great relief. "They're comprehensive and helped me catch my kidney disease before it was too late."

Cynthia, a diabetic for over 20 years, attended a free National Kidney Foundation (NKF) Kidney Early Evaluation Program (KEEP®) screening recently in Newburgh, NY. "I found out that my GFR-a measure of kidney function-had declined immensely since the last screening," she reported.

"It showed that in the course of one year, I had gone from being healthy to being in stage two kidney disease." She is now working with her doctor and following a diet plan and exercise regimen to help prevent or slow further kidney damage.

Cynthia's story is just one of thousands. NKF has provided free early detection screenings to more than 155,000 people at risk for kidney disease. And for each of them, these screenings can be life-changing events.

The Fillmore Historical Museum and Fillmore & Western Railway yard are all decorated for the Christmas season. Sparkling, colorful lights, Christmas bulbs, garland, toy soldiers and all the trimmings add a festive touch to the location.
The Fillmore Historical Museum and Fillmore & Western Railway yard are all decorated for the Christmas season. Sparkling, colorful lights, Christmas bulbs, garland, toy soldiers and all the trimmings add a festive touch to the location.
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Wildfires, Rainy Season Conditions Could Cause Significant Property Damage
Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)
Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)

Oakland, CA - When it comes to winter flooding, there are two things that many homeowners should know about their risk. First, the dangers of severe weather and related flooding do not end when colder weather begins. Floods are a year-round hazard, and they can be especially dangerous in western states - including Arizona, California, and Nevada - due to recent wildfires and the upcoming rainy season.

Second, most homeowners insurance policies do not cover flood damage, which resulted in an average claim of nearly $27,000 in 2009. In most cases, flood insurance made available through the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) is the only protection against the financial costs of flooding.

"Virtually every home and business owner faces some risk of flooding, which can stem from events as commonplace as broken sewer lines, slow moving rainstorms, or even a new real estate development that alters drainage patterns around a property," said Nancy Ward, the Federal Emergency Management Agency's (FEMA) Region IX Administrator. "Everyone should have a flood preparedness checklist, and for many people, having flood insurance can be as important as having an emergency supply kit and knowing where to go if they need to evacuate."

Specific dangers facing western states during the 2010-2011 winter season include:
RISKS FROM HEAVY RAINFALL: Floods are a particularly common and costly hazard in Arizona, and can be caused by heavy rain and the remnants of tropical storms. Even mountainous areas are at risk, as higher grounds tend to funnel water down into canyons. In California, heavy rains through the winter and early spring are responsible for most of the state's yearly rainfall, causing cresting rivers, back-up storm drains and saturated ground, all of which can lead to devastating floods. Nevada also has a significant winter rainy season due to intense storms that originate over the Pacific Ocean.

INCREASED RISKS FROM WILDFIRES: Large scale wildfires during the summer and fall months have dramatically altered ground conditions in communities in Arizona, California, and Nevada. The charred ground that these fires produce lacks vegetation that typically helps absorb and slow excess water, increasing the likelihood of flooding and mudflows and causing significant damage to nearby properties.

In 2010 alone, more than 142,000 acres in Arizona were severely damaged by wildfires, including the Schultz Wildfire in June, which burned more than 15,000 acres. Just one month later heavy rains brought severe flooding to the Flagstaff area. In 2009 the "Station" fire in Los Angeles County, Ca burned more than 160,000 acres. Residents in Nevada should also be aware of the flooding dangers associated with wildfires, which damaged more than 28,000 acres in 2010.

Residents in every state and nationwide should know that flood insurance policies typically take 30 days to become effective, so the time to get protected is now.

FEMA offers interactive tools to help homeowners understand their risk. For more information visit

Individuals should visit or call 1-800-427-2419 to learn how to prepare for floods, what to do if their area has been flooded, how to purchase a National Flood Insurance policy, and the benefits of protecting their home and property against flooding.

For additional information, or to speak to FEMA representative, call the FEMA Newsdesk at 202-646-3272. For media inquiries specific to California, Arizona or Nevada, contact John Hamill at 510-627-7054.


The Fillmore Lions club has announced that this year’s Student Speaker Contest will be held on Monday, February 6, 2012. The topic will be “What could the America of Yesterday teach the America of Tomorrow.” The topic is very interesting and will be important to the students and citizens of Fillmore. Chair Bill Edmonds states that the total prize money will be over $21,000 in college scholarships. The Fillmore winner will get $75 and advances to the next round. Runner-ups will receive $25. The winner goes on to compete with the winners of other local Lions clubs. All high school age youth who live within the Fillmore Unified School District boundaries are eligible to compete. This includes home taught students as well as Fillmore residents who attend other high schools as well. This also includes foreign exchange students as well.

Students who wish to enter may contact Bill Edmonds at 524-4839 or Josh Overton the FHS drama and language arts teacher. Edmonds emphasized that this public speaking exercise will be very worthwhile to the students and interesting to their parents and to the community. Public speaking competition will also look very good on college applications and resumes. Students should get started early because it takes time to develop and practice a good speech.

Former art instructor (and contest judge) Sarah Hansen, Jane David, artists (and contest judges) Wana Klasen and Judy Dressler show some of the submissions to the Woman of Influence Art Contest, sponsored by the Fillmore Soroptimist.
Former art instructor (and contest judge) Sarah Hansen, Jane David, artists (and contest judges) Wana Klasen and Judy Dressler show some of the submissions to the Woman of Influence Art Contest, sponsored by the Fillmore Soroptimist.
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This October and November, Soroptimist of Fillmore held their first annual Woman of Influence Art Contest. Boys and girls, ages 4 to 18 years old that attend school or live in the community of Fillmore, were asked to draw a picture of a real woman that has touched their hearts. They were also asked to write in 50 words or less why this woman has had a positive impact in their life.

Judging was delightfully “eyed” by three local artists. Two of the judges are professional artists, Judy Dressler and Wana Klasen. The third judge is a former art instructor, Sarah Hansen.

All of the entries were winners in the hearts of the judges, so choosing first, second and third place was difficult. The winners were pleasantly surprised in their classrooms last Friday, November 18th with a gift card given to them by Soroptimist members. Here are the winners:

1st place winners are Emma Myers, Jennifer Orozco, and Angie Vidal.
2nd place winners are Nevaeh Romero, Ismanay Alday, and Natalie Parrish.
3rd place winners are Jordi Malagone, Ashley Yepez, and Anthony Estrella.

All of the entries were on display at the Soroptimist Fashion Show on Saturday, November 19th.

Thank you to all of the students and judges for participating in recognizing and praising a “Women of Influence” in your life.

December 3rd at 1:00 p.m.

It’s time again for the 2011 Annual Fillmore Christmas Parade sponsored by the Fillmore Lions Club.

On This Saturday December 3rd at 1:00 PM the parade will proceed south on Central Ave. from the Library at Second Street down to City Hall on Santa Clara Street.

Immediately after the parade Santa will be available for pictures, (if you bring your own camera), at the Fillmore Museum, near the train station.

There is no cost to enter the parade. Parade check-in is at 11:30 AM on Second Street, in front of the Memorial building. The Parade is open to all groups or persons wanting to celebrate the season with a “themed” entry.

The parade route will be posted with “No Parking Signs” from 11:00 AM to 3:00 PM the day of the parade. The Lions Club requests the cooperation and patience of Fillmore residents for this event to ensure the safety of all involved.

This is the 11th year the Lions Club has sponsored the Annual Fillmore Christmas Parade. The Fillmore Lions Club’s continues to sponsor the parade in honor of long time member, the late Henry “Hank” Carrillo. Hank urged the Club to assume the responsibility of the parade when it was in danger of losing sponsorship.

Chief Rigo Landeros and Captain Al Huerta will be escorting Santa Clause down the parade route to the Train Station where Children can have their picture taken.

See you all on December 3rd! AND don’t forget your camera!


It is that time of the year again! Christmas is just around the corner and the community as well as the neighborhood council of Piru would like to invite everyone to Piru’s 34th Annual Christmas Parade.

This year the parade will be held on Saturday December 10th. The parade will start at noon followed by a horseshoe tournament along with food, games, live entertainment with Piru’s very own Piru River Band.

If you are interested in entering our parade, having a booth, need an application or have any other questions feel free to contact Paul Alverdi (805)317-9896 or Dan Golson (805)603-9595. Applications for the parade can also be picked up at any local store.

We are looking forward to seeing everyone come out! Hope you all have an enjoyable and safe holiday.


The Ventura County Garden Club will hold its last meetting of the year on Wed, Dec 7 at Santa Paula's Episcopal Church, 117 North 7th Street, in Santa Paula.

The program will be a holiday luncheon, with Christmas music.
11:30 - 12:00 social time
12:00 - putluck luncheon & emtertainment

Members are asked to bring the following:
Fillmore - appetizers
Santa Paula - salads
Ventura, Ojai, Oxnard, Camarillo - desserts

Guests are welcome to come and join the start of the Holiday Season. Call Dorothy Allee, 525-8400 for more information.


Have you ever been to a meeting that is out of control, ran poorly or ineffectively? Meetings like this can be frustrating and a waste of time. In the FFA Organization, there is a certain method of running a meeting which is called the Opening and Closing Ceremony. The ceremony is preformed by the officer team and advisor at the start and finish of each FFA meeting or formal event. To begin the meeting, the president calls upon the vice president to call the roll of officers and determines if they are at their stations. Then, each officer has a part in which they explain their duties to the chapter. After which all FFA members in attendance recite the FFA pledge. The meeting proceeds with any business which must be discussed. To end the meeting, the president asks if there is any further business, announces his final remarks and ends the meeting. The Opening and Closing Ceremony sets an example for the members and guests to speak when spoken to and also explains why we are here: to promote agricultural opportunities and premier leadership.

On Wednesday November 9th, Fillmore FFA members competed at Santa Paula High School at the 2011 Ventura FFA Section Opening and Closing Ceremonies Contest. As members perform the Opening and Closing Ceremonies with pride and dignity, they are judged on how well they recite their parts, are dressed, and on how they present as a team. Fillmore FFA was proud to send the Officer Team, Open Team and Novice Team to the contest. After all teams competed and the judges tallied up the scores the Ventura FFA Section Officer Team began the awards ceremony. The Novice Team placed 3rd, the Open Team placed 4th, and the Officer Team placed 2nd. Along with team awards, the judges choose individual awards for each position. Marc Zavala was awarded Outstanding Individual Treasurer and Sierra Blankenship was awarded Outstanding Individual Secretary. Congratulations to all who competed!

Brooke Aguirre is Fillmore FFA's Chapter Reporter


The Class of 1962 will celebrate their 50th Class Reunion with a Dinner/Dance on Saturday, June 2, 2012 at the "Glen Tavern Inn" at 134 North Mill, Santa Paula. Any questions please contact Maria Diaz Kilgore at 805/647-6274 or Details will be mailed to classmates at a later date. Does anyone know the whereabouts of the following classmates: MariaRosa Cozzoli, Wanda Dawson, Jose Estrada, Clifton Faulkner, Kipling Graves, Henrietta Hamilton, Jose Hernandez, Ruben Ornelas, Steven Penn, Art Sanchez, Howard Wands, and Don Woodward?

Photo by Greg Cooper
Photo by Greg Cooper
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Santa will be in town to help the Humane Society of Ventura County raise much needed funds for Shelter Animals. He’ll be posing for portraits with Ventura County pets and family members. Photographing “Santa Paws,” will be professional photographer and Brooks Institute Professor Greg Cooper who will donate his services to help the Humane Society feed, spay and neuter, and place homeless animals in need. Also volunteering his time to help the animals is Chuck Bowman, our favorite “Santa.”

Photo sittings will include several poses with pets and/or their family members. Participants and pets are encouraged to dress festively for the Holiday Season. The cost for “Santa Paws” photo sittings is $20 and includes a CD of your portraits which will be ready approximately 15 minutes after portraits are taken.

All proceeds will benefit homeless animals throughout Ventura County who are awaiting adoption at the Humane Society Shelter and Adoption Center, Ventura County’s LOCAL animal shelter.

The event is first come, first served, no reservations required. Sunday, December 4th, Santa will be at the Marriott Hotel at 2055 East Harbor Blvd in Ventura from 10am until 3pm. On Sunday, December 11th, he’ll be at the Humane Society of Ventura County Animal Shelter and Adoption Center at 402 Bryant Street in Ojai.

For more information and to view sample photos, visit or call 805 646-6505.

Adoption prices cut in half for Thanksgiving Weekend

Camarillo, CA – Thanksgiving is a time to be thankful for what we have, but for hundreds of abandoned dogs and cats in the county’s animal shelter, they have little reason to rejoice.

Since September 1st of this year, over 2600 dogs, cats and bunnies have come through the shelter’s doors. Of those, approximately 1700 were dogs, 900 cats and the rest were rabbits. Twenty one percent of the dogs got reclaimed by their owners but only two percent of the cats and bunnies went back to their original homes.
The shelter works with a number of rescue organizations to transfer out as many of the remaining animals as possible but it still needs the public’s help.

“Another name for “shelter animal” is “homeless pet” said Ventura County Animal Services (VCAS) Director Monica Nolan. “These animals end up in shelters through no fault of their own. Whether its an owner who died or lost his home, or someone who never got their animal ID’d through chipping or licensing, the victim, not the criminal, ends up being the shelter animal.”

This coming weekend, VCAS is having its own Black Friday sale. Dog and cat adoption prices will be half price ($60 instead of $125) from Friday through Sunday. Each adoption package includes a spay/neuter, rabies shot, county license, microchip ID, a certificate for a veterinary exam and obedience lessons for the dogs.
“This offer is our way of saying thank you to those who adopt a shelter dog or cat – thank you for giving them a new home and a second chance at love” Nolan said.

The shelter is open Saturday and Sunday from 9am to 4pm, Monday and Wednesday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., and Thursday and Friday from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. Animals can also be adopted from our Janss Mall Shelter Hope Pet Shop The Pet Shop is open Friday through Sunday from 11am to 7pm. To view the animals or for more information, go to


The Bardsdale United Methodist Church will again present its two popular Christmas musical programs to begin the holiday season and hopes that the community will mark their calendars to attend.

"Ring Noel", put on by the church's bell choir, The Orange Pealers, will be on Saturday December 3 at 5 PM downstairs in LeBard Hall. This wonderful event will feature a concert of Christmas carols by the choir under the direction of Marcia Heerema-Hoffman and allows guests to try their hands in ringing bells and joining in the musical merriment. A hearty meal accompanies the program. The suggested donation is $10 per adult, $25 per family and children under 5 years are free. Seating is limited and reservations are encouraged by calling the church at 524-2070 or Marcia at 524-3674.

On Sunday, December 11 at 5 PM, the annual Christmas Vespers program will be held in the church's historic sanctuary. This free one-hour program will feature a variety of holiday numbers featuring the Bardsdale Chancel Choir with guest voices and musicians and directed by Marsha Porter.

Please come and get in the spirit of the holidays with these two heart-warming programs.

The church is located at 1498 Bardsdale Avenue.


Ameron Corporation of Fillmore has generously donated four light standards to the Museum Park. They were delivered yesterday, Nov. 14, and installed today. They will enhance the appearance of the Museum Park area and increase security. The Board of Directors is pleased that this local corporation is supporting our site enhancement project and our Museum programs.

How about drive your car on the High School Football Field or around the track?

It’s now possible with Google Maps Driving Simulator. Copy and paste in these coordinates 34.396831,-118.913123 into the search box at the top of the driving simulator located here Google Maps Driving Simulator and you will be taken to Highway 126 and Central Avenue. You can start out by making a left turn to head north on Central Avenue. Notice the farther out you zoom, the faster you can drive. For those of you who do want to drive on the High School Football Field, copy and paste these coordinates 34.403827,-118.918961

For a 3D version of the simulator, click here 3D Google Maps Driving Simulator

Ashleigh Norman of Fillmore with her award winning painting, "The Message." Photo by Myrna Cambianica.
Ashleigh Norman of Fillmore with her award winning painting, "The Message." Photo by Myrna Cambianica.
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“Ojai Celebrates Art IV” was held on Ojai Day, 2011 at the Ojai Valley Museum
Valerie Freeman of Ojai with her award winning ceramic sculpture,
Valerie Freeman of Ojai with her award winning ceramic sculpture, "Blue Bolt." Photo by Myrna Cambianica.
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Oatley Kidder with her award winning sculpture,
Oatley Kidder with her award winning sculpture, "Woman, a Work in Progress." Fred Kidder, Photographer
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The Ojai Valley Museum's final exhibit of the year, “Ojai Celebrates Art IV,” features three award winners offering visitors an experience in three different media - clay, luminous oil paint, and the world's heaviest wood. Museum Director Michele Pracy announced the prizes on Ojai Day in October. The exhibit continues through December 31, 2011. A panel of distinguished art professionals judged and selected the winners: Anca Colbert, art dealer and appraiser; Theodore Gall, international sculptor; and William Hendricks, photographer and professor.

Valerie Freeman of Ojai won the first place award for her ceramic sculpture, "Blue Bolt." This wonderfully alive baby horse is executed in the one fire clay technique Freeman learned in a workshop with Harvard ceramicist Allison Newsome at the Beatrice Wood Center for the Arts. The sculptor has to work very rapidly, shaping the clay both inside and outside simultaneously, then firing it while still wet. The viewer can feel the horse emerging out of a lump of clay into the horse form. You can virtually see the push and pull of her fingers in the clay. Newborn from the sculptor’s hands, the little foal stands on splayed legs, and in a moment of sudden energy, turns its head to bit and itching back. The dynamic surge of the modeling, the cobalt blue glaze, and the artist's lightning fast inspiration, all add up to the title's bolt from the blue.

Ashleigh Norman of Fillmore won second place for "The Message," an oil painting in the magic realist tradition. Working with her fascination for dreams and puzzles, Norman creates an experience of mystery and ambiguity. In the foreground her self-portrait is deeply still, bathed in an otherworldly light, but her hair is streaming to one side. Is it moving in a strong wind or in some unknown force? The viewer sees what seem to be ordinary objects, but a closer look reveals strange energies. An antique Victrola casts an ominous shadow, but where is the light coming from? If there is a message, why is the record on the Victrola broken? What about that wineglass, isn't there a little storm inside of it? One thing the viewer can be sure of, Norman will not tell you. Her art is about letting people take from it what they feel and letting the mystery remain.

Oatley Kidder placed third with "Woman, a Work in Progress." Carved in lignum vitae, a wood valued for its hardness and durability, the sculpture was developed over a long period of time, as the artist carved out the figures hidden in the material. "Woman" in the title is the essence of the gender, and the different figures circling the sculpture emerge in various phases of development. Kidder purposely leaves chisel marks to give a feeling of the power and strength that was demanded in her sculpting process. She is particularly drawn to the unique texture of lignum vitae, which she describes as waxy, like very hard butter. The viewer's experience is intensely tactile and at the same time not confined to a specific interpretation.

The winning artworks in “Ojai Celebrates Art IV” were selected from among 60 entries. The artists themselves graciously provided interviews describing their creative process for this article. We hope that their passion for art will inspire anyone in town during the remainder of the year to enjoy the exhibit.

The Ojai Valley Museum, established in 1967, is generously supported in part by Museum Members, Private Donors, Business Sponsors and Underwriters, the Smith-Hobson Foundation, Wood-Claeyssens Foundation, City of Ojai, and the Rotary Club of Ojai.

The museum is located at 130 W. Ojai Avenue, Ojai, CA. Admission: free for current 2011 members, adults - $4.00, students - 18 and under - $1.00, children 6–18 - $1.00 and children 5 and under – free. Gallery hours are Tuesday – Friday, 1 to 4 pm; Saturday, 10 to 4 pm; Sunday, noon to 4 pm. The museum will be closed on Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day. Tours are available by appointment.

For more information, call the museum at (805) 640-1390, ext. 203, e-mail or visit the museum website at