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In Print

Last Updated: 05/31/2008 05:00PM • Subscribe via RSSATOM

Read some articles from back issues of the print edition and supplemental content.

Did You Know...

05/31/2008 ● By Super Admin

...that skin cancer is the number one potentially fatal cancer among young women? In fact, skin cancer affects families more than all other cancers combined!

Old Hangtown

05/31/2008 ● By Super Admin

Wooden wheels creak and groan. A horse-drawn wagon kicks up a cloud of dust as it trundles down a rutted, well-traveled dirt road cutting through the middle of town. The town is called Dry Diggins, but, on account of a botched robbery that lead to the hanging of several men from an oak tree not far from town central, it has earned itself the nickname “Hangtown.” People go about their daily business, along the wood-plank walkways, in and out of the local saloons, general goods stores and provisioners. Each one has a different reason for being here in Hangtown. Most are miners and gold prospectors hoping to make it rich off of James Marshall’s discovery at Sutter’s Mill. Others are people who simply want to start someplace new, and seek their destiny out in California. Whatever the case, the California Gold Rush is in full swing, and these people want a piece of the action to call their own. Over a century has passed (154 years to be exact) since Hangtown was renamed to the more familiar “Placerville.” The residents of that time, as their town grew, eventually desired a name that was more appropriate, friendly, and reflective of the spirit of the Gold Rush, and needless to say, less reflective of the town’s riotous and disorderly past. The most common type of mining for gold during that time was placer mining and since the area contained many placer deposits, the name Placerville was coined. Today, there are many historic buildings left over from that period of California’s history. Some can be found along the stretch of Historic Main Street; new stores inhabit the old buildings, while a few serve as historic sites and exhibits. Some of the old landmarks have buildings built over them. The stump of the original hanging tree can be found in the basement of The Hangman’s Tree Tavern. Moving further up into the various ravines and canyons that surround the area, one can find the remnants of mines, surviving buildings, and the occasional ruble that belonged to prospectors and enterprisers. Some of these sites are overgrown with weeds, while others have been meticulously maintained and preserved. Placerville is a town steeped not only in history, but also historical figures. Some of these figures ran shops in Placerville at the time of the Gold Rush, hoping to make it rich not from gold, but from enterprising. People like John Studebaker, Levi Strauss and Philip Armour set up their own respective shops in Hangtown to profit from the miners and townspeople who had need for their services. The familiarity of those names should be an indicator of just how successful they were. Even after gold-ore became scarce, many shopkeepers, miners and regular people decided to make Placerville their permanent home, growing to love and appreciate the beautiful countryside where they had sought to stake their fortunes.Walking down Historic Main Street today, it’s difficult to imagine the way Placerville looked back in 1849. The dirt roads have been replaced with black asphalt. Instead of wood planking to serve as walkways, there are now concrete sidewalks. Where once stood general stores and saloons, now there are a congregation of hardware, antique, food and furniture stores. Still, with the right amount of imagination, one can still envision the way things were back in the days of the Gold Rush, back in the days of Old Hangtown. And in honor of the founding of this great city, the Placerville Downtown Association hosts Founders’ Day. This year, the festivities will be held on Saturday, June 7 on Main Street. For details, call 530-672-3436.•

Tolerant Children

05/31/2008 ● By Super Admin

At a young age, children are taught the “golden rule,” the simple directive to treat others as you would like to be treated.

Friendly Visitors Program

05/31/2008 ● By Super Admin

All too often elderly men and women find themselves facing a common enemy: loneliness. Whether from an illness, an inability to drive, or distant family and friends, many homebound seniors miss out on the social interactions important in living a full, vibrant life. Enter El Dorado County's Friendly Visitors Program.With funding from Proposition 63, the Mental Health Services Act, and administered by the El Dorado County Area Agency on Aging, this rewarding program was founded in 2007 to bring local volunteers to seniors for a once-a-week visit to enjoy conversation or a shared hobby. The program has a wide reach, covering all of El Dorado County from El Dorado Hills to South Lake Tahoe and Garden Valley to Somerset. “Everyone’s well-being is improved when they have social contact with others that is meaningful,” says Connie Zelinsky, Coordinator of Volunteers. Zelinsky became involved in March of 2007, having worked for El Dorado County Human Services for a year prior and as a volunteer for Youth for Understanding. “I learned that people find so much meaning and satisfaction getting to know each other and learning from each other,” she says. “They may worry that they won’t know what to talk about, but, with time, they really come to know and appreciate each other.” While Zelinsky says she enjoys her own visits with the seniors, her greatest satisfaction comes from the friendships that grow between her volunteers and the people they call on. “As unique as each of them are, the volunteers also bring something different and special to the program,” she notes. “Each comes with different talents and experiences to share. I’m in awe of the good that people can do,” Zelinsky says.Participating as a volunteer requires a few mandatory steps. After filling out an application, new volunteers are invited in for an hour-and-a-half training session, which includes information on how the program works and what the program expects from volunteers. All applicants are also screened via a criminal background check for the safety of the seniors. Friendly Visitors pays for all fingerprinting costs and can reimburse for some mileage expenses as well. As the program grows and evolves, Zelinsky says some of the best feedback comes from the volunteers and seniors themselves. All participants are encouraged to speak up and contribute their comments and opinions on how to improve the program. It’s this spirit of community and conversation the program thrives on. “All it takes is one hour of the week giving someone their undivided attention,” says Zelinksy. “That is a very special gift that anyone can give.” •For more information on volunteering or to receive an application, contact Connie Zelinsky by phone at 530-621-6119, or by email at connie.zelinsky@co.el-dorado.ca.us.

Snapshots from Area Happenings

05/31/2008 ● By Super Admin

Sutter Middle SchoolOn March 7, Sutter Middle School eighth grader Lindsay F. “rewards” the school’s Vice Principal, Kevin Garmston for receiving the most votes from students in the Pennies for Patients drive, which raised more than $3,000, by throwing a pie in his face.Photos courtesy of Sutter Middle School.For more Outtakes Photos, be sure to pick up this month's copy of Style-Folsom El Dorado Hills edition. Click on the "Get Your Copy" link on the bottom of this page for some of our newsstand locations. Or, to order a copy of this issue, please email Gloria Schroeder at gloria@sierrastyle.com, or call her at 916-988-9888 x116.If you know of any events in the Folsom and El Dorado Hills area, or have photos you would like to share with us, please submit them to info@sierrastyle.com.

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