Cinderella and other holiday goodness

Holiday thanks-yous and a few last-minute gift-giving tips

photo courtesy of Chico Performances

Holiday thank-yous
Many thanks to everyone involved with Chico Community Ballet’s recent three-day run of Cinderella at Chico State’s Laxson Auditorium. My 12-year-old daughter Lydia and I joined the many other eager little girls and their parents and/or grandparents who went to Sunday’s matinee performance (Dec. 15) of the beloved fairy tale, featuring the beautiful music of late Russian composer Sergei Prokofiev.

The costumes were gorgeous, as was the scenery (thanks to set designer David Beasley), and the dancing (and wordless acting) by every single performer was top-notch and captivating. It was easily one of the best shows I have been to in quite some time, and the equivalent of ballets I have seen performed by ballet companies in much bigger cities. Many kudos!

Along the thank-you lines, Butte Environmental Council board chairman Mark Stemen offers these words, in reference to BEC’s recently dropping its appeal to save the historic valley oak tree and other trees at the corner of West Eighth and Salem streets. The trees are slated for removal to make way for the building of Salvation Army transitional housing (as covered in this column and in a recent CN&R Downstroke news brief).

“I want to thank the folks at the Salvation Army and the Blitz Build program at the university. They have worked with us at BEC, and they are fully committed to doing the right thing,” Stemen wrote in a recent email to me. “They have agreed to plant three times the number of trees they are required to plant by code.

“The tree species will be of the valley oak mixed-riparian vegetation type, as identified in the [city of Chico’s draft of the] Urban Forest Management Plan, and they have agreed to put the fallen trees to a use that is ‘as beneficial to the City and planet as possible,’ also called for in the Urban Forest Plan.”

Thanks, Mark!

Last-minute eco-friendly gift-giving
Local videographer and homeless advocate Bill Mash of Without a Roof let me know about a wonderful possibility for eco-friendly (and Christmas-spirited) gift-giving: Check out the Torres Community Shelter’s gift registries at Collier Hardware and/or The Galley kitchen-supply store and purchase some much-needed kitchen supplies (like cookware, cooking utensils, small appliances and so on) for the busy shelter’s nearly completed (and much-needed) new kitchen. Another possibility, as shelter director Brad Montgomery points out in the Torres Shelter newsletter, Porch Light, is “a gift card from merchants that carry kitchen items, such as Target, Walmart, Kmart, Home Depot, Lowe’s, Bed Bath & Beyond, or Big Lots.”

A framed painting recently joined the painted rock in front of the CN&R. Thanks, artsy strangers!

Photo by Christine G.K. LaPado-Breglia

Go to for contact info for the Torres Shelter.

For more conventional gift-giving, Greenways contributor-extraordinaire Claire Hutkins Seda offered me some great ideas if one is hard-pressed for time and thus shopping online. “I think the most eco-friendly stuff is used,” she wrote, “so I buy stuff on,, etc.”

Seda also likes popular handmade-gift site, as well as—“more focused on kids and mamas”—for its many listings of super-cute eco-friendly handmade items, such as Tailored Tushies Snorkelpotamus yoga pants and TimButt2oos Reindeer Games pj sets. There’s a huge variety of other items as well, including vanilla-pecan buttercrunch candy and a Nutcracker-themed “mama pad” set.