Ashleigh Cavey of Bardsdale 4-H and her Championship Market Steer Chunk. High bidders paid $7.00 a pound. Photos courtesy Bob Crum.
Ashleigh Cavey of Bardsdale 4-H and her Championship Market Steer Chunk. High bidders paid $7.00 a pound. Photos courtesy Bob Crum.
Enlarge Photo
Carolina Lopez of Fillmore FFA, pictured with one of her three Grand Champion Market Rabbits, high bidder paid $1,100 for all three rabbits.
Carolina Lopez of Fillmore FFA, pictured with one of her three Grand Champion Market Rabbits, high bidder paid $1,100 for all three rabbits.
Enlarge Photo
Janaey Cadena of Fillmore FFA pictured with one of her three Reserve Grand Champion Market Rabbits, high bidder paid $1,100 for all three rabbits.
Janaey Cadena of Fillmore FFA pictured with one of her three Reserve Grand Champion Market Rabbits, high bidder paid $1,100 for all three rabbits.
Enlarge Photo
Brooke Allen, 13, Sespe 4-H, Grand Champion market goat. Winning bidder paid $36.00/pound for 94 pound Brutus.
Brooke Allen, 13, Sespe 4-H, Grand Champion market goat. Winning bidder paid $36.00/pound for 94 pound Brutus.
Enlarge Photo
Erin Berrington, Fillmore FFA, Reserve Grand Champion market steer. The high bidder for Erin's Flashback paid $6.00 per pound.
Erin Berrington, Fillmore FFA, Reserve Grand Champion market steer. The high bidder for Erin's Flashback paid $6.00 per pound.
Enlarge Photo
Dylan Crawford, 14, Fillmore FFA, FFA Reserve Grand Champion market swine. High bidder paid $9.00 per pound for Dylan's prize pig.
Dylan Crawford, 14, Fillmore FFA, FFA Reserve Grand Champion market swine. High bidder paid $9.00 per pound for Dylan's prize pig.
Enlarge Photo

Another fantastic year for kids from Fillmore and Bardsdale at the Ventura County Fair and the Junior Livestock Auction. Let's get to it.

Ashleigh Cavey, 19, Bardsdale 4-H Championship market steer.

Ashleigh's winning record of championships or reserve grand championships extends to the past six years. The record includes awarded 4-H supreme grand champion breeding heifer two years ago and awarded 4-H steer reserve grand champion last year. This year again awarded 4-H Champion Market steer. The hoofbeat continues.

The winning steer's name is Chunk. Why? “Because when I first got him,” said Ashleigh, “he was chunky... always a little fatty so I figured the name Chunk fit him best.” From my perspective, weighing 1,342 pounds, a better name would be Huge! But I digress. Chunk's diet? “Oh, he ate a lot,” she said. Surprise... not!

How was Ashleigh's experience raising Chunk? “Really good, we traveled a lot around California where I entered him in six shows. I like to travel,” added Ashleigh, “and so does Chunk.” Obviously Chunk traveled around California without a beef. Hmmm.

Ashleigh's next goal?” I just want to keep on going to school because I want to be a large animal vet. I am presently attending Reedly College studying animal science. I intend to transfer Fresno State and once I finish there I'll decide on what vet school I'm going to attend. A year and half at Reedly, two years at Fresno State and another year or so at vet school, so it's a long process to a become a large animal vet but it's something I love.”

Chunk spent his days lounging and foraging up in Lockwood Valley because that's where Ashleigh's grandparents have a ranch. I'll bet Chunk was spoiled. “I walked Chunk frequently, constantly washed and groomed him and applied a special conditioner on his skin to make his coat nice and shiny... he was definitely a pampered steer, that's for sure.” I guessed right.

Ashleigh's high bidder paid $7.00 per pound for Chunk.

Note that Fillmore FFA took both top honors in the rabbit category! First time, I think.

Carolina Lopez, 13, Fillmore FFA, Grand Champion market rabbits.

Their names? “I call them the Trio,” said Carolina with a grin. She had good reason to smile... the Trio fetched Carolina $1,100. For those of you who diligently follow the Junior Livestock Auction, the Trio is a first for Fillmore. She broke the glass ceiling to which Carolina said, “Yes, I did, I know, and I feel so great.”
What's it like to raise market rabbits? “Really easy”, she quickly answered, adding “I think.” The only thing you need to worry about is making sure that they are happy and healthy. “That was one of the big things for me.” How does one make a rabbit happy or even tell when a rabbit is happy. “They come up to you and they want to be petted,” was her quick response with a chuckle. Really?.. I exclaimed. “Yes, they are by nature happy animals... they're almost like dogs.”

But you can't train rabbits like dogs, I boasted. “Actually you can,” said Carolina. Ahem, you can train a rabbit? “Yes, you can potty train them, teach them to jump really high. Yeah, I once had a pet rabbit and I potty trained it, taught it to come to you, yeah, it was really nice,” Carolina proclaimed. I was sure that Carolina was pulling my leg... so to speak. “No, I'm serious” she insisted. I stand corrected.

Next year? “Next year I hope to continue my breeding school project for 4-H'ers or any other small clubs or Fillmore FFA that way they can continue to raise market rabbits for the Fair, or just in general. So, you're going to become a rabbit breeder? “Yes, technically I am already but I want to expand further.”

From where did the rabbits come? “At first we got them from an old friend and they were mixed rabbits so we kind of worked with them. And then we purchased pure-bred California rabbits from a breeder. They worked really well for us. They got so big so quickly.” So they were special rabbits to begin with, I assumed. “Yes, but we stopped using those because we didn't want to mix them up for the Fair,” she said, adding “because we want them to be pure Californians or pure New Zealands. But we're mostly with California rabbits anyways but we got a new breeder and we told her hey, we just want Californians.” I pretended I understood!

“This fall Carolina and I'll be attending California State, Channel Islands majoring in bio chemistry.” Bio chemistry? “Yeah, I plan on becoming either a professor or a doctor but I know... I know I want to get up there.” That involves a lot of schooling I said in my most professorially voice. “I know, I know, but I'm looking forward to it” proclaimed Carolina.

Words of wisdom for potential rabbit farmers? “Don't give up. People have told me stop with the rabbits, don't even do it anymore, not worth my time. Lo and behold, I won grand champion and first place in showmanship... it was great... a great feeling.” That's showing the naysayers!

Janaey Cadena, Fillmore FFA, Reserve Grand Champion market rabbits.

How was Janaey feeling about the award? “I feel pretty great because it's my first year (in the FFA program) and a big surprise,” Janaey said. Next year? “Probably a pig and maybe rabbits again,” she said. Why a pig I wondered. “I always wanted to do a pig but never got into it.”

What was your experience raising rabbits, I asked. “It wasn't a lot of work but at times it really was,” said Janeay, adding, “You have to take time to hold them so they get used to it and get to know you. Sometimes they get pretty feisty.” Feisty rabbits? “When you try to pick them up they jump around all over the cage.” I thought rabbits naturally hop around. Anyway, I needed to know when Janaey knew her rabbits were happy. “Ummm, I think that when they let you pick them up the first try without jumping around they might be comfortable with you.” That must take some time so you don't have a problem with patience, I asked? “I do,” she said, “When I would try to pick them up and they would squirm after a few times I get a little impatient and frustrated then just try again.” Now I know that I'd be a lousy rabbit farmer. No patience!

Janaey will be a senior this year at Fillmore High. After that? “I plan to be a firefighter.” Why a firefighter I asked? “Just watching it, it just really interests me,” she said. But don't the risks phase you ? “It does.. it makes me think about it but still, it's what I want to do.”

Janeay also received $1,100 for her trio of rabbits at auction.

Brooke Allen, 13, Sespe 4-H, Grand Champion market goat.

Brooke's goat's name is Brutus. Why Brutus? “He has that look with the dark brown head. To me he just looks like a Brutus.”

How was raising Brutus? “It was fun,” said Brooke. OK, but what does fun mean I asked. Surprisingly, for Brooke, a long pause before answering. Finally; “Fun was working with him, exercising him and getting him to this point.”

How do you exercise Brutus? “I make him jump on the wall, like jumping up and down on a four-foot wall, run back and forth and do some free jumps,” said Brooke. It worked... Brutus was in great shape.

This is Brooke's third year raising market goats. And last year? “I also won Grand Champion market goat,” she said with a smile. Well of course -- Brooke obviously has learned the secret of raising championship market goats. And next year? “I'm doing another goat,” she said without a moment's hesitation. Sure, why not make it a threepeat. Her secret? “Have a good time and be sure to work them every day.” Every day? “Practice for setting them up for showmanship,” she explained. Which means? “Make sure their back legs are square and their back flat.” Aha... the goat pose!

Winning bidder paid $36.00/pound for 94 pound Brutus.

Erin Berrington, Fillmore FFA, Reserve Grand Champion market steer.

What is the 1,328 pound steers name? “Flashback,” said Erin. Hmmm. Flashback? Because he's a brother of last year's steer,” explained Erin. I think I got that right.

What about raising Flashback, I asked? “What about it,” quipped Erin? No, Erin, I ask the questions!!!

Or perhaps I should consider taking up quilting instead of interviewing. Rephrasing... was it easy, I asked? “He was a little stubborn towards the end when he stated putting on more weight because he really didn't want to walk but I walked him about an hour each day and he got better.” I understand Flashback's reluctance. If I weighed 1,328 pounds, I might prefer to stay in lounge mode.

Did you have a weight issue with Flashback I asked? “No, actually the day I came to the Fair, he weighed 1,393 pounds. The max is 1,400 pounds. But when he weighed in he was at 1,328,” Erin explained. Eating 26 pounds of chow per day, one ponders the quick weight loss.

Erin plans to set aside some of the proceeds from the auction for her college fund... Montana State, agriculture school. Montana State? “Because my sister lives up there and is going to school up there and it would be nice to be with my sister.” Montana winters are very cold I hear. “I went up there during the winter and I liked it”, said Erin. “I like snowboarding.” Well, that explains that.

Erin's long range plans include becoming a veterinarian. In the meantime, Erin plans to set aside some of her proceeds for herself... like a car fund for one. Next year? “Another steer,” she said.

The high bidder for Erin's Flashback paid $6.00 per pound.

Dylan Crawford, 14, Fillmore FFA, FFA Reserve Grand Champion market swine.

Winning reserve grand champion is remarkable considering that this was only Dylan's second year raising pigs. Now then, what does one name such a championship pig? “Plan B,” said Dylan. Ummm, Painbee, I asked? “NO, Plan B”, exclaimed Dylan. Was there a Plan A? “Yes,” Dylan said, “but she died of natural causes shortly after I got her.” Interesting. What was that experience like, I asked? “Well, it was pretty bad,” Dylan said, “but I only had her for about three weeks.” And the time with Plan B? “About three months,” he said. How was raising Plan B? “Good”, he said. Just good? “She ate well, she walks good.” Well, that about sums up raising Plan B.

What about her diet, I asked, just to keep the conversation going. “Three pounds of Morman's Showteck in the morning, three pounds in the evening” he explained. Why Morman's Showteck? “It's got protein, corn and a bunch of other stuff,” he said. Enough said! No cookies? “Yes, he said,” I knew that! I've been around these kids long enough to know about the relationship between cookies and pigs. What's her favorite? “Peanut butter,” he said with a grin. Figures!

Here is Dylan raising championship pigs and his long range plans include becoming a cattle rancher. Why? “Just something I'm interested in,” he said. Does that mean getting a horse? “Yes.” Do you have one now? “No.” Want one? “Yes.” Mom and dad said not yet? “Right.” Sometimes I know the answers before I ask the questions.

High bidder paid $9.00 per pound for Dylan's prize pig.

In the 15 years that I've been assigned to cover the Fair, never is there a year that I don't see truly wonderful kids come from the 4-H and FAA programs. The majority of these kids go on to highly successful careers because they learn about responsibility at an early age and all through the years they participate in the programs. Sure there's a learning curve regarding raising their chosen animal but it's the unseen intangibles that form their attitudes leading to their acquired aptitudes. Without exception, qualities I see exhibited consistently are dedication and optimism. In a word: Awesome!

Naturally, behind every youngster who raises an animal, champion or otherwise, there are other champions: Parents. And in many cases, grandparents. Godsends all! Also, kudos to the incredible, indispensable 4-H leaders and FAA teachers. Exceptional people all!

To all the kids in the programs... congratulations for a job well done. To those of you who won an award: Congratulations on behalf of the Fillmore Gazette and the community at large. You have a right to be proud of your well-earned accomplishments.

See you at the Fair next year!

 


 
Mark Ortega and Riley Wright, FHS Class of 2011.
Mark Ortega and Riley Wright, FHS Class of 2011.
Enlarge Photo
Mark Ortega and Irma Torres, FHS Class of 2016.
Mark Ortega and Irma Torres, FHS Class of 2016.
Enlarge Photo

This past June, the FHS Alumni Association awarded $54,000 in Scholarships to members of the class of 2017. With the hard work from volunteers at Alumni events, and the donations received from loyal Alumni members all over the country, we are able to give out an extra $20,800 in Continuation Grants this coming September. Continuation grant applications are available to any Fillmore High graduate continuing their higher education in trade schools, colleges, and universities.

Pictured are Riley Wright FHS Class of 2011, and Irma Torres, Class of 2016. Riley is finishing her Master Credential in Education at California Lutheran University. Riley was recently hired by the Fillmore Unified School District. Irma is attending Ventura College. She is on schedule to receive her Associate’s Science degree in 2018 and her Associate’s Science Degree for Nursing (A.S.N.) in 2020. To see a complete list of our 2017 Continuation Grants awardees, please look on the Alumni Associations Website. www.fillmorehighalumni.com

 


 
Tuesday night’s school board meeting discussed various topics like Measure V projects, board approved resolutions, and certified special education salary schedules.
Tuesday night’s school board meeting discussed various topics like Measure V projects, board approved resolutions, and certified special education salary schedules.
Enlarge Photo

Approve Pre-Qualified Pool of Architectural/Engineering Firms for Various Measure V Bond Projects.

The Board approved the a pool of pre-qualified Architectural/Engineering firms as required by State Allocation Board for current and future Measure V Bond Projects. Pool of architects to updated every five years.

Approve Resolution No. 17-18-01 Assignments of Teachers Who Are Teaching Outside of Their Credential Authorization or on an Emergency Permit.
The Board approved Resolution No. 17-18-01

Approve 2016-2017 Certificated Special Education Salary Schedule.
The Board approved the 2016-2017 Certificated Special Education Salary Schedule.

Personnel Recommendations.
The Board approved all personnel recommendations including new hires, promotions, resignations and leaves.

 


 
…so it could get its picture in the Fillmore Gazette
On Saturday, August 12th, at around 10pm there were reports of an elephant walking down Center Street in Piru. When authorities arrived they quickly learned that the elephant was not alone, in fact it had it’s own film crew. Hollywood was in town and the elephant was being filmed for a TV show. Photo Courtesy Sebastian Ramirez.
On Saturday, August 12th, at around 10pm there were reports of an elephant walking down Center Street in Piru. When authorities arrived they quickly learned that the elephant was not alone, in fact it had it’s own film crew. Hollywood was in town and the elephant was being filmed for a TV show. Photo Courtesy Sebastian Ramirez.
Enlarge Photo
 


 
Chevron’s Leslie Klinchuch, left, presented Martha Gentry of the Fillmore Historical Museum with a $2,000 donation check for the March 2018 commemoration of the 90th anniversary of the St. Francis Dam disaster.
Chevron’s Leslie Klinchuch, left, presented Martha Gentry of the Fillmore Historical Museum with a $2,000 donation check for the March 2018 commemoration of the 90th anniversary of the St. Francis Dam disaster.
Enlarge Photo

Submitted by Fillmore Historical Museum.

The Fillmore Historical Museum was pleased last Wednesday to receive a $2,000.00 grant from Chevron Corporation for use in the development of displays and programs related to the upcoming March 2018 commemoration of the 90th anniversary of the St. Francis Dam disaster. Martha Gentry received the check from Leslie Klinchuch of Chevron Corporation. There are members of the communities of Fillmore, Piru, Sespe and Bardsdale who are relatives, children and grandchildren of the victims and survivors of this disaster. The purpose of the commemoration is to tell the stories of these families and honor the 450 + people who died. The event will include a program on the morning of Saturday, March 17, 2018, followed by a lecture by Jon Wilkman, author of the book, “Floodpath”, about the dam and the aftermath of the collapse. There will also be an afternoon bus tour to the site with an onboard docent who will point out locations along the route where major events occurred. We hope you will all mark your calendars and plan on attending some or all of the events.

The staff at the museum is also looking for individuals who have photos of the damage caused by the disaster and have family stories to tell. Call us at 524 0948 or come by the office in the bunkhouse, 340 Main St. in Fillmore, and tell us your stories. We look forward to hearing from you.

 
Photo of the Week: "Bidders and spectators at the Junior Livestock Auction at the Ventura County Fair" by Bob Crum. Photo data: ISO 6400, 16-300mm lens @16mm, f/7.1, 1/125 second.
Photo of the Week: "Bidders and spectators at the Junior Livestock Auction at the Ventura County Fair" by Bob Crum. Photo data: ISO 6400, 16-300mm lens @16mm, f/7.1, 1/125 second.
Enlarge Photo
Survived another Fair
Bob Crum
Bob Crum

I thoroughly enjoy the fantabulous Ventura County Fair. But thank goodness it's over! Recreationally speaking, the multitude of photo ops is bliss. On the other hand, shooting the kids with animals in the Junior Livestock Auction ring is a daunting task... my most challenging assignment of the year. Nevertheless, I miraculously survived... though still recovering.

Why such a challenge? First, the lighting in the venue is horrible... a combination of outside ambient light and overhead fluorescent lights. Furthermore, the size of the auction ring makes it difficult to get a respectable composition. And y'all know how heartily I emphasize composition.

Because the venue lacks sufficient light, shutter speed and aperture are a balancing act.

If I open the aperture too wide I loose depth-of-field. If I slow down the shutter speed too much to compensate for the lack of sufficient light, I risk blur.

Focus is another issue. If I back up I risk the auction ring railing grabbing the focus and putting the subject in the ring out of focus. If I get to the railing, I'm too close to get a kid and a 1,238 pound steer in the frame. No time to change the focus mode on the fly.

Given the circumstances, I compromise the shutter speed and aperture while letting the ISO float on 'auto'. But as the ISO floats to compensate for the lousy lighting, it goes pretty high. As it goes over 1200 on my Canon 7DMKII, noise becomes stronger. If you remember, digital noise looks like micro-sized flecks in the image. Treating the noise requires extra steps in during post processing. Worse, as I increase the noise reduction strength, detail is sacrificed. Balancing between noise treatment and detail preservation is a challenge.

Hopefully, none of my trials and tribulations cause any of you to take pause. While it appears to be tedious work, from the shoot to post processing, it all becomes second nature with practice. Is this any different than you deciding to play a musical instrument? Is it possible to become a virtuoso without practice??? Photography also takes practice!

Now the important yet rewarding part: Creativity. Photography is much more than taking snapshots. It's about creating in image. Creativity is the ability to frame a composition that results in a compelling image.

A frequent comment I hear repeatedly is that they have a digital camera but don't get the same photos that I do. Well, good composition is just as much a result of lots of practice as well as technical know-how. Technical know-how permits you to capture good compositions with correct exposure. And focus! The combination of technical know-how and the art of framing good compositions is what makes photography fascinating... and rewarding.

One other thing: Post processing. The camera is merely a computer that a lens is attached to. It's the first half of taking a photo. No image straight out of the camera is as good as it could be. Processing the image... from RAW data to a Tiff or Jpeg is the other important half. More on post processing in a future column.

If you don't have any plans for this weekend, consider spending a day at the Camarillo airport for the Wings Over Camarillo air show Saturday the 19th and Sunday the 20th. The ground display which includes many war planes of yesteryear is awesome. The air show is a treat. Go the website http://wingsovercamarillo.com/and you'll see my photo/video of photos I shot last year. See you there! Cameras UP!

Happy photoing,

Send comments, questions or suggestions to bob@fillmoregazette.com

 
Fillmore Police Chief Dave Wareham along with other Fillmore citizens addressed the city council in regards to the negative affect cultivation of marijuana in Fillmore will have on the city, which has voted strongly against it.
Fillmore Police Chief Dave Wareham along with other Fillmore citizens addressed the city council in regards to the negative affect cultivation of marijuana in Fillmore will have on the city, which has voted strongly against it.
Enlarge Photo
Kathy Meza addressed the city council.
Kathy Meza addressed the city council.

Last night's 3-hour regular city council meeting was a standing room only affair. As council meetings go, this would have to be classified one hundred percent positive.

Fillmore's Chief of Police, Sheriff's Captain Dave Wareham, led off with the 2017 mid-term crime report. Once again crime in Fillmore is reported to be low and on the decline. For complete statistics please visit our website, (fillmoregazette.com). Our Police Department continues to do an excellent job, making Fillmore one of the safest among California's 50 cities as it was found to be in 2014.

MOORPARK-BROAD BEACH SAND TRUCKS
City Manager David Rowlands reported that a contract between the City of Moorpark and the Broad Beach consortium to replenish sand on Malibu's Broad Beach, was nearing completion. This plan involves removing sand from the Grimes Canyon quarry, at the rate of 500 belly-dump loads per day, for at least 10 years. The trucks are set to deliver their loads down Highway 23, through the hairpin turns of Grimes Canyon, through the City of Fillmore, and down Highway 126 to Broad Beach in Malibu. This proposal will seriously impede traffic on Highway 23, including emergency vehicles, for the foreseeable future. The City of Fillmore has filed suit to block this agreement. The outcome is uncertain.

MEDICAL MARIJUANA PROPOSAL UNANIMOUSLY DEFEATED
The big issue, whether or not to permit medical marijuana cultivation in the city, drew residents and non-residents alike, many carrying signs indicating their preference. A report on the listening session held several weeks ago concerning medical marijuana cultivation showed that approximately 150, mostly residents, attended. The idea of permitting cultivation in town was at that time voted down by a margin of three to one by the group. Fillmore was also the only city in Ventura County which voted NO on State Proposition 64 which permitted recreational marijuana use, despite the federal ban of the substance as a schedule 1 drug. The City of Fillmore has always strongly opposed marijuana in any form.

During public discussion of this issue both sides had strong arguments. Those in favor of introducing medical marijuana emphasized the large monetary potential; millions per year to the city coffers. Those adamently opposed to any marijuana business in town argued its proven harmful effects upon the community, particularly upon youth. Though "medical" marijuana, these residents admit, has legitimate medicinal uses, the overwhelming effects upon communities involves crime, violence, and many other negative influences.

So, the no on marijuana crowd can rejoice upon hearing of the unanimous Council vote against admitting medical marijuana into our community. The vote was essentially about money versus morals and, for a pleasant change, morals won out.

 
On Tuesday, August 8th around 5:30pm a two car accident occurred on River Street. One person was transported to the hospital, but no serious injuries were reported. Cause of the accident is under investigation.
On Tuesday, August 8th around 5:30pm a two car accident occurred on River Street. One person was transported to the hospital, but no serious injuries were reported. Cause of the accident is under investigation.
Enlarge Photo
 

On Wednesday, August 2nd at 9:52a.m. a man drove into the front porch of a vacant house near Center and Church Street in Piru. A few pillars and a gas meter were damaged; the house was reported to be vacant at the time of the accident. The man was sent to the hospital with non life-threatening injuries. Cause of the accident is still under investigation.

 
On Saturday afternoon, a car rolled over on Balcom Canyon Road. The female driving the vehicle climbed out, jumped into another vehicle and took off. CHP has taken over the investigation. Photo Courtesy Fillmore Fire Department.
On Saturday afternoon, a car rolled over on Balcom Canyon Road. The female driving the vehicle climbed out, jumped into another vehicle and took off. CHP has taken over the investigation. Photo Courtesy Fillmore Fire Department.
Enlarge Photo