Keepin’ it local

Local school-aged artists celebrated; plus, a new book for local-focused eaters

Nicole Hanf, a 7-year-old student at Shasta Elementary School, garnered a first-place ribbon in the California Federal Junior Duck Stamp Contest for her California waterfowl drawing.

Nicole Hanf, a 7-year-old student at Shasta Elementary School, garnered a first-place ribbon in the California Federal Junior Duck Stamp Contest for her California waterfowl drawing.

PHOTO Courtesy of Lora haller/U.S. Fish & Wildlife service

Junior Duck Stamp winners
I received a press release from Lora Haller at the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service’s Sacramento National Wildlife Refuge Complex in Willows announcing the winners of the 21st annual California Federal Junior Duck Stamp Contest, which was judged on March 25 in Sonoma.

One hundred winners were chosen from 3,126 school-aged entrants throughout the state for their artistic depictions of ducks. Of those 100, five are from Chico: 7-year-old Nicole Hanf of Shasta Elementary School, who got a first-place ribbon in the K-3 age category; Isabella Borquez, another 7-year-old from Shasta Elementary, who received an honorable mention; Andres Aguiar, 11, of Marigold Elementary, who got an honorable mention in his age group; Tyler McLane, 11, also from Marigold, who received an honorable mention; and Sahvanna Salazar, a 15-year-old Chico Junior High student who placed third in the seventh- to ninth-grade group.

Erica Digap, a 16-year-old at Sacramento’s Sheldon High, took Best of Show with her stunning colored-pencil drawing of a snow goose. Erica’s work will go on to compete at the national level on April 15. The national winner’s work will be featured on the 2011-12 Federal Junior Duck Stamp.

“The Jr. Duck Stamps are $5 and are mostly collector’s items,” Haller explained in an e-mail. “Revenue from it goes to promoting conservation education in the form of awards and scholarships to the students, teachers, and schools that participate in the program. We sell them here at the Refuge and some post offices sell them.”

Waterfowl hunters are required to purchase the Federal Duck Stamp (the adult stamp). They cost $15 and often nonhunters buy them because 98 cents of every dollar made on them goes to purchasing wetlands. “Several of our refuges were purchased from the sales of Duck Stamps,” Haller said.

A book for locavores
The Northern California Regional Land Trust recently partnered with California farmer-advocacy group Community Alliance With Family Farmers to put out the first North Valley Eater’s Guide to Local Food.

The new guide—produced by the NCRLT’s Buy Fresh Buy Local, North Valley program—aims to facilitate relationships among local growers, food preparers and consumers, including restaurants and institutions.

“It is the land trust’s hope that through the Buy Fresh Buy Local North Valley program, significantly more North Valley residents will come to understand and support the vital connection that exists between locally grown food and local farmland, leading to greater farmland conservation and protection into the future,” offered NCRLT Executive Director Jamison Watts.

Copies of the free publication are available at Chico Natural Foods and Zucchini & Vine, and at the NCRLT office (167 E. Third Ave., Chico).

Free car clinic
With the price of regular gas at around the $4-per-gallon mark in Northern California, it makes sense to get as many miles per gallon as possible on a tank of gas. There’s a business in Chico—Affordable Automotive—offering a no-cost Community Car Care Clinic on April 16, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the Riebes Auto Parts parking lot at 175 E. 20th St. The 10-minute inspection will net you a 41-point checklist focusing on possible repairs or service needed for optimum fuel efficiency, as well any safety hazards or other problems.

Call 892-1774 for more info.