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Village Chat: 05/01/2019

Village Chat for May 1, 2019

brittany kunde
The seaworthy craft Waterstuff, owned by Wendy Quinn, was the winner of the inaugural Jack to Jack yacht race.
It was a beautiful day for sailing Sonoma Creek last Saturday, April 27. The Jack London Yacht Club (JLYC) held its first Jack to Jack boat race, with 35 boats traversing the 0.7-mile stretch from Jack London Lodge to Jack London Village.

The boats, all purchased by sponsors for the community fundraising efforts of the JLYC, were replicas of Jack London's sailboat, the Snark.

The elegant boats, handcrafted by local artists from redwood trees and outfitted with sails sporting logos of various businesses and such, bobbed and floated, often not upright, through the creek and past spots with ominous names like Devil's Dice Box, The Heathen, Goodbye Jack, and The Abysmal Brute - all names of Jack London tales. There were rapids, rocky crags, tree limbs, whirlpools, kraken - difficult challenges for the mighty Snark replicas, and some would not have made it without help from volunteers down in the creek, nudging the surviving boats on their way toward the finish line.

Spectators scrambled for optimal spots to spy the watercraft, congregating at the Jack London Saloon, the downtown bridge, and at Jack London Village. Plenty of food and drink raised spirits throughout the afternoon. Jack would have approved!

The winner was “Waterstuff,” owned by Wendy Quinn. Its sails were shades of blue, based on the design of the JLYC logo. Congratulations, Wendy!

The concept of the JLYC and the Jack to Jack yacht race was born one night on a napkin by Commodore Jim Burch and Vice Commodore Ana Dominquez when they were brainstorming on how to host a benefit for local nonprofits and fire departments after the 2017 fires. JLYC is a nonprofit organization, and any proceeds go back to the community in the form of grants, which will be presented at a reception later this year. During the off season, the boats will be displayed at local wineries and businesses.

brittany kunde
Above: Grand Prize winner of Trashion Fashion week, The Can Can by Brittany Kunde.
The Sonoma Community Center's Trashion Fashion Show was April 6, with winners announced at the Trashion Week “Wrap Up Party” on April 12. And the Grand Prize winner was Brittany Kunde for her outfit, The Can Can. Stacy Kunde had the details on the dress: It was made out of circles that were hand-punched out of soda cans, then four additional holes were punched into each circle and connected together with wire (again, by hand). Her headband and earrings were also soda can circles. The headband “feather” was made from the old, sticky strings off of the tonnage tags used during harvest. Brittany crocheted them and then spray glued them into the shape of the feather.

That sounds like a ton of work! And it's right in keeping with Trashion Fashion, where the goal is to recycle, reuse, repurpose and revitalize unwanted trash, junk, cast-off items, you name it, into works of art and fashion. Brittanny and husband Jason live in Jason's grandparent's house (Fred and Jane Kunde) near Beltane Ranch. I'm not sure if that's in Kenwood or Glen Ellen, so both towns can claim them. Congratulations, Brittany!

isbella hamburger-shelton
Isabella Hamburger-Sheldon of ArtQuest models Sweet Seconds, winner of the Innovative Use of Paper Junior Award at Trashion Fashion.
But that's not all. Kenwoodian Janet Fisher is an art teacher at Santa Rosa Junior High, in the ArtQuest program, and her students won three of the seven Junior Prizes at Trashion Fashion.

Janet wrote, “The class has studied the environmental and economic effects of the fashion industry. We watched a documentary called True Cost and read articles on the fashion industry and the new phenomenon 'fast fashion.' Students were given the assignment to create a garment/outfit using recycled and repurposed materials in a creative and innovative way. Students worked in groups of three or four and had to plan, design and problem solve to complete the assignment.

“As a field trip we went to the Goodwill Outlet to learn about their collection and recycling program and to gather materials. A special guest lecturer, fashion/trashion designer, Tuan Tran, has also inspired and helped us.”

The winners were: Pure Glamour Junior Award for Belle Poubelle, Gabby Samii, Grace Moore, and Daphne De La Montoya; Innovative Use of Paper Junior Award for Sweet Seconds, Isabella Damberger-Sheldon, Kali Gilardoni, and Zoe Gieseker; and Innovative Use of Fabric Junior Award for Trash Punks, Ava Roberts, Dylan Bradford, Asija Gibbs and Gabe Martin. Congratulations, everyone!

class for Sonoma County Resilience Fund
Cheryl Franklin’s students learning to play the ukulele and raising money for the Sonoma County Resilience Fund at the same time.
One of our longtime classified advertisers Cheryl Franklin sent news about her free ukulele classes for Fire Relief Fundraising. There's a suggested donation of up to $40 and the first six classes have raised close to $900, all of which has been given to the Sonoma County Resilience Fund. Cheryl says that everyone is welcome to come and join the fun of learning to play a song or three. Space is limited and there are a limited number of ukuleles for use, if needed. The next class will be on May 18, 2:30-3:30 p.m. Find out more and sign up at

It's May, and graduation season is here, so if you are graduating from high school, college, or beyond, please send us your news, including your future plans, be it more school, work, travel, the military, whatever… We'll publish all the high school news in our June 15 issue, and the rest as it comes in.

Well, I'm out of room. Thank you to everyone who sent in news and photos for Village Chat. You can do it, too. Just email, or call 833-5155 and chat me up! - AQP


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