Give good headlines

Don’t choke!

Don’t choke!

Here at SN&R, we feel there are several beats we can cover in a way that no other local media can. The environment, local music and local politics, to name a few.

We also write regular stories about The Sacramento Bee, a critical institution in our community that needs regular scrutiny from the outside.

And something we read in the Bee last week raised a troubling question: What’s up with the Bee headline writers? Do they need more adult supervision?

Exhibit A, a headline from Friday, December 3: “Concord Teens Arrested in Choking of Chickens.”

We suspect this headline is some sort of cry for help from inside the Q Street colossus. It follows a similar outburst a few months back, concerning recently defeated Sacramento City Council member Robbie Waters’ favorite public-works project: “Library Gives Waters Happy Ending.” (Cosmo Garvin)

Ag, grow

Agriculture is a $1.6 billion regional industry, and a look at its future will take place Friday at a free forum sponsored by the Sacramento Area Council of Governments.

The meeting will center on improving the synergy between rural and urban communities in the region’s six counties. A SACOG study, for instance, determined that of the 2.2 million tons of food consumed in the area annually, less than 2 percent is grown locally. At the same time, the region produces 3.4 million tons of food a year. “The region has a mismatch between what we grow and what we eat,” the study says.

The forum will also highlight the economic importance of agriculture—which SACOG has found generates $3.3 billion annually in regional economic activity. The forum will also discuss new economic opportunities, land use and water use.

Victor Vasquez of the U.S. Department of Agriculture will be the keynote speaker. All interested members of the general public, from ranchers to locavores to government staff, are encouraged to attend. The half-day forum takes place this Friday, December 10, at the Sacramento Convention Center, 1400 J Street; 7:30 a.m.; (916) 321-9000; more information and registration at (Hugh Biggar)

Artists on the Verge

Although Mayor Kevin Johnson’s For Arts’ Sake initiative is in its “implementation” phase, it’s still pretty rough when it comes to funding Sacramento art. Take for instance the Verge Center for the Arts, a collective and gallery on the south side of downtown that’s trying to raise tens of thousands to build a hub for local talent. Negotiating the city’s red tape and sourcing donors has been hard fought, but you can help, thanks to the increasingly popular site Kickstarter: Visit the “Grow Verge Center for the Arts!” page ( and donate to help cover the cost of building permits so that the space can hold 37 resident artists, an arts classroom, a printmaking lab and two large exhibition spaces. This is the last week to help Verge meet its $6,600 goal; maybe K.J. will make a donation? (Nick Miller)