January 23rd, 2014
The top halfpipe competitors in the U.S. and world may have been vying for spots on the U.S. Olympic Team in front on the Main Lodge deck, but over to the right, on the Andie's Double Gold race course, future Olympians were racing for their “gold” coming from Mimi’s Cookie Bar.
This yearâs version of the influenza virus has brought back an old enemyâthe so-called âswine fluâ of 2009âand it has also reached epidemic levels in California, including Mono County, according to Mono and Inyo County Public Health Officer Rick Johnson.
Johnson calls it an epidemic because 4 percent of the local population has the fluâand has for the past three weeksâcompared to the normal about one percent that would have it at this time.
After more than a year of leaving the Fourth of July Fireworks show in limbo, Town Council member Matthew Lehman said he and a consortium of public funders have secured enough funding to keep them going.
"We're still slightly short," he told the Town Council at its meeting on Jan. 15, "but we think we have enough funds and resources to where we can now commit to the Fourth of July for 2014, and the events will move forward as normally scheduled. We're looking forward to that.
The Fourth of July fireworks began early for members of the Mammoth Lakes Town Council last week.
Council member John Eastman, speaking from the dais on Jan. 15, led a verbal assault on members of the Mono County Board of Supervisors, saying in order to be a supervisor from Mammoth Lakes, âa lobotomy is performed in Bridgeport and from then on, our supervisors have a difficulty in representing the community of Mammoth Lakes.â
Eastman, who has said he will not run again for Town Council when his season opens in the June 3 elections, then asked rhetorically, âAm I missing something?â
Ingrid Braun, a veteran Los Angeles law enforcement officer who currently serves with her husband as a reserve officer with the Mammoth Lakes Police Department, has initiated a campaign for Mono County Sheriff.
Due to reduced visitation as a result of the low snowfall this winter, transit service in Mammoth will be modified effective Monday, January 20, 2014. The service changes include:
The Red Line will operate from 7:00am until 5:30pm on a 20-minute frequency. Red Line buses will depart Snowcreek Athletic Club at 0:00,:20 and :40 minutes past the hour (1st departure 7:00am, last departure at 5:20pm). The Red Line will depart from Main Lodge at 0:30, :50 and :10 past the hour (1st departure at 7:30am, last departure at 5:30pm).
Mammoth Mountain Ski Area will continue making snow as fast as possible, according to Rusty Gregory, the CEO of the ski area.
Shooting down rumors that the ski hill’s water supply was drying up, Gregory told a group of town leaders that the water levels on the mountain remain high.
“The well drawdowns haven’t been bad,” he reported to members of a liaison committee between the Town of Mammoth Lakes and the ski resort on Monday, Jan. 13.
“Just when I think I have things figured out, along comes a rookie.”
“Come again, Fido?
“And just when I had the team all figured out.”
“Ah. You are speaking of the new dog in the office. The puppy.”
“She’s going to be a problem.”
When three-time Olympian Kelly Clark fell on her first run of the 2010 Vancouver Olympic snowboard halfpipe finals, she instantly relived the 2006 Torino Olympics, where a fall put her in fourth place.
“I repeated my greatest defeat in the first run of finals,” said Clark, who already has locked up a spot on the 2014 Olympic Snowboarding team and who will appear among the many stars at the U.S. Snowboarding Grand Prix at Mammoth Mountain, today (Thursday, Jan. 16) through Sunday.
While executives at Mammoth Mountain Ski Area keep their collective pedal to the metal for a re-making of the Main Lodge area, the development of a new Eagle Lodge is running a close second on the priority list.
Actually, according to CEO Rusty Gregory, the new Eagle is even more top of mind than anything that might happen at the Main Lodge in the near future.
“It’s a higher priority from a timing standpoint,” he said this past week at a Town-MMSA Liaison Committee meeting.
BRIDGEPORTâAn 86-year old Mammoth Lakes woman was killed in a two-car collision on U.S. 395 south of Bridgeport shorty before 12:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 14.
Dead was Suzanne Stokes, according to a report from the California Highway Patrol. She was driving a 1996 Subaru, which collided with a GMC van driven by a 62-year-old Minden, Nev., woman identified as Barbara Koehler.
Koehler was taken to Bridgeport. A Life Flight air ambulance transported Koehler from Bridgeport to Renown Hospital in Reno. The CHP listed her injuries as "moderate."
The California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) reopened S.R. 89, Monitor Pass, yesterday, Jan. 13.
Caltrans maintenance crews have gone through and repaired any sections that were damage by winter storms, according to Caltrans, and determined that the pass is safe for reopening to the traveling public.
As is often the case this time of year, the opening of S.R. 89 is dependent on favorable weather, Caltrans said. If the area is impacted by inclement weather Caltrans may have to reclose the highway.
On December 13, 2013, President Obama declared the Rim Fire a federal "Major Disaster" according to a news release from Mono County today, Monday, Jan. 13. "Pursuant to this declaration, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) is offering an emergency loan program to assist local farmers and ranchers who conduct family sized farming operations and had physical or production losses caused by the fire that occurred from August 17 â October 24, 2013," the news release states.
The flu season is in full swing in California, but it is still not too late to get a flu shot that will give you a much higher chance of avoiding the flu, health officials said.
"While we are seeing an increase in flu activity in California, it is not too late to get vaccinated against the flu, said Dr. Rick Johnson this week.
"California, and the Eastern Sierra, is seeing an accelerated increase in flu activity over the past few weeks" he said in a news release. "In fact, as of last week, the flu is now considered widespread throughout California for the first time this season."