Monday, June 29, 2015

Beautiful sunrise on Sunday

Beautiful Wonder Valley sunrise

It was raining over the Sheephole Mountains on Sunday morning, as the sun rose. It made for a beautiful panorama.

Where's Heather?

Wonder Valley's own artist, Heather Johnson, is riding her motorcycle to the other end of the Americas. She's made it as far as Playa El Cuco, El Salvador. From Heather:

Heather Johnson, In Search of the Frightening and Beautiful
"To get to Mompox, there is a ferry that runs every odd hour. You pick it up east of Manangue, a town so filled with motorbikes that riding through it feels like participating in a race. There are literally no cars.. only 125cc singles, mostly 2-strokes. The ferry slides lazily down a branch of the Magdalena River and spits its cargo onto a steep sand and gravel embankment, followed by 25 miles of gravel to the well-preserved 16th century town of Santa Cruz de Mompox.

"At the terminal there is a bar, run by a big man with three names who grilled me on my feelings about President Obama (wherein my Spanish conveniently crapped out - partly because I'm not great at talking about politics with strangers). But when I finally parked my bike on the flat ferry barge, I was immediately surrounded by enthusiastic guys with questions about my bike and what the hell I was doing with it, alone. They listened to my every word, sorting out the jumbled Spanish and gently offering corrections. We talked about the night's big football game, and I assured them I'd route for the country I was in now, as opposed to one I'm traveling to (Colombia vs Argentina - Colombia lost by one point after kicking mighty ass to settle up a tie). We took photos of each other, swapping emails, and once again, after striking out into unknown territory, I ended up with new friends."

Road to Wonder Valley

The Road to Wonder Valley

Profiles local artists Michael Smiley and Bobby Furst

The artists are not from Wonder Valley but the show is titled, "The Road to Wonder Valley." I imagine they will include artists from here in upcoming episodes. I hope so.

View at:

Help for Seniors and Disabled

Seniors and disabled persons - do you need help with your house and/or property? Reach Out Morongo is taking applications for 20 homes in need of light repair, painting, light carperntry and other work that does not need a permit.

The work will be done by 1st Tank Batallion and Naval Chiefs from Robert E. Bush Naval Hospital aboard the Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center in August and September.

Call Schlosser for more information at: 760-361 1410.

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Desert Trail Column, June 25, 2015


We send out belated Rainbows-of-Pearls-and-Roses to Donny Pixley who celebrated his special day last week. Happy belated birthday, Donny!

Jan and Jerry Peek are celebrating 53 years of marriage this week. Happy anniversary, Jerry and Jan!

Karen’s Commentary:  Thanks to Sandi Arismendi for the greeting cards to help the kids at St Jude’s Ranch for Children; to Marie for bags of used postage stamps to help save the eagles in Big Bear; to cousin Annie for cards and manufacturers’ coupons to help military families overseas; and to Star Javier for both cards and stamps. All this help with my projects is really wonderful, especially having the coupons already cut out! I have an update to a past handy hint about thinly coating countertops with blue Dawn dishwashing liquid to get rid of ants. It did cause our kitchen counter ant population to go from dozens down to 4 or 5 per day, but I discovered that coating only the countertop where it meets the wall with the cheap dishwashing liquid worked even better! I honestly don’t know why, but we haven’t had a single ant in two days now.

Darlene’s Commentary:  I’m finally getting used to using crutches, and I think I have the rhythm down, but the feet do not always cooperate. I’m very careful and take my time when walking, keeping my eyes on the ground, and yesterday I carefully walked into a tree branch that put a good lump on my noggin. I can go grocery shopping by using their electric carts. Stater Brothers has two new and improved carts that are pretty zippy and turn on a dime, and back up as fast as they go forward. I was also being careful when I sideswiped a display of twelve-packs of sodas, and almost caused a head-on collision with a grocery cart full of groceries. Anyway, no harm was done to the merchandise, and the only harm to me was of my pride. Now, if I can make it through the check stand without incident, it will be all good!

The Wonder Valley Thrift Store on Godwin Road, just north of Highway 62, is open Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays from 9 to noon. Come in to find some great bargains! All proceeds from sales go to the Godwin Christian Fellowship Church building fund.

Handy Hint: To peel the skin off fresh garlic, cut off the stem end, then pop them in the microwave for 5 to 10 seconds. Remove and let cool. The skin will practically slip off by itself.

Thought for Today: To write with a broken pencil is pointless.

Until next time . . . remember to take time to enjoy the WONDERs all around us.

Sons of the Pioneers sing Wonder Valley (c. 1941)

Sons Of The Pioneers - Wonder Valley

Wonder Valley, c. 1941, Sons of the Pioneers

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Officials caution those with existing breathing issues

Lake Fire Affecting Air Quality in Joshua Tree National Park

Date: June 19, 2015
Contact: George Land, 760-367-5507
Twentynine Palms, CA—The 11,000 acre Lake Fire in San Bernardino National Forest is dropping ash in the park and producing less than healthy air quality, particularly for individuals with respiratory problems. While the park is open to visitors, officials caution anyone with existing breathing issues and discourage strenuous exercise such as hiking, climbing, running or cycling during existing conditions.

The cause of the fire is still under investigation and is only 10% contained at this time.

For information on the fire: or call the Fire Center Information line at (909) 383-5688.
For current conditions in the park check:

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Where's Heather?

Cartegena, Colombia. The Guera and I have made it to South America. Hallelujah...
Wonder Valley's own, artist Heather Johnson, is riding her motorcycle to the other end of the Americas. Follow her at: In Search of the Frightening and Beautiful.

Bob Dornberger | art and food in Wonder Valley

I met the artist Bob Dornberger at the Palms last Sunday. I didn't know HE was the guy who does the High Desert Test Sites Secret Restaurant and the burrito canon. He also made the first (as far as I know) Wonder Valley postcard - which can be see at his site:

Wonder Valley attracts some of the most wonderful artists and musicians I've ever met, and Bob numbers among them. Thanks, Bob, for sometimes choosing Wonder Valley as your base of operations!

Cleanup money coming soon!

Money to clean up illegal dumping in Wonder Valley!

Mark Lundquist, the chair of the MAC informed me that the San Bernardino County Board of Supervisors will be releasing funds for desert cleanup.

Our first submission in a little south of Amboy
Community member Almut Fleck suggested asking everyone to send in potential cleanup sites, so we'll have our list and are ready to go when the resources come. Thanks, Almut! Great idea!

Send your locations to:

Send the address or intersection, a description, and attach photos if you like.

I'm working on a waste resources tab at the top of this page - we can make it into a flyer and make sure everyone has a copy. Getting rid of stuff out in the desert isn't as easy as it is in the city, so if we all know how and where to get rid of things we can all have a part in keeping the desert clean.

Monday, June 22, 2015

Congratulations, Wonder Valley!

Wonder Valley NextDoor off to a great start!

Hey, everyone! We started NextDoor Wonder Valley last week, and in ONE week 25 people joined! Star Javier, from the Wonder Valley Community Center invited the most people, getting 6 others to join. Wonder Valley artist Jennifer Ruggiero got 2 people to join, and Raymond Salcedo and Glenda Berndt also got people to sign up. Thanks, everyone!

What's NextDoor?It's a PRIVATE social network - only people who live in Wonder Valley can join.

It's a place where you can share information:

  • When will the power come back on?
  • Which roads are passable?
  • Has anyone seen my dog?
  • I have a water tank to give away, or eggs to sell.
  • Who do I call to get a rattlesnake out of my pool?
  • Watch out for a pale green pickup. I scared off the driver who was testing doors on my neighbor's cabin.
NextDoor is a great way to reduce crime in our neighborhood. When we know our neighbors, when we watch out for each other, it makes it more difficult for crime to flourish.

Sign up here!

If you have any questions, or trouble signing up, please email me, your MAC delegate:

Friday, June 19, 2015

Many Moods of Ben Vaughn, Sunday, June 21

GREAT SINGERS! This week's MANY MOODS OF BEN VAUGHN will celebrate the art of vocalizing. Tune in to hear selections by these fine recording artists and more. Full playlist to follow.

BROADCAST SCHEDULE:KCDZ, Joshua Tree, CA (Sundays at 3:00 pm PST)

AVAILABLE AS PODCAST: Now available on iTunes thanks to KCDZ in Joshua Tree, CA.


Hey, Y'all know you can leave comments, right? I know you're out there because I can see the stats on the page visits, but most the time I feel like I'm hollering into the dark.

Any advice on how to make commenting more inviting?


Thursday, June 18, 2015

Desert Trail Column, June 18, 2015

Desert Trail Column, June 18, 2015, by Karen Meyers and Darlene Parris

The second Meet & Greet with Teresa Sitz, our Basinwide MAC Representative, went very well with twice as many people attending as the first one. Thoughts on how to make more available to the people who come to Wonder Valley for the Art Tours every October were discussed, with suggestions ranging from having a show at the Glass Outhouse to holding a swap meet. Also, Teresa left postcards and Neighborhood Watch signs with Star at the community center. They may be picked up on Mondays from 8 to noon.

We have been told that the tai chi classes are no longer meeting on Wednesdays. We’re sorry for the misinformation. We will let you know if the classes start up again at a later date.

We send out Rainbows-of-Pearls-and-Roses to Jerry Peek who is celebrating his special day this week, and some belated wishes go out to Pastor Garry Brooks whose birthday was last week. Happy, happy birthday to both of you!

Darlene’s Commentary:  I would like to commend all of the caregivers on this planet! Besides washing dishes, making beds, doing laundry, cleaning bathrooms, sweeping floors, vacuuming carpets, and making and serving meals, a good caregiver actually cares about their client and does all this for about $9 an hour! The next time you see a caregiver helping a client gently and lovingly, you will know that you have seen a guardian angel right here on Earth.

Karen’s Commentary:  At 72, not too many things surprise me, but something sure did last week. You cannot go to the Social Security office armed with a ton of ID and get any kind of proof in writing of YOUR OWN Social Security number! It doesn’t matter if you know it by heart or have it tattooed on your forehead, the best you can do is apply for a replacement SSA card which takes two weeks to process.

Did you know that our Wonder Valley Fire Station #45 is staffed with at least one Firefighter and one Firefighter-Paramedic 24 hours a day, 7 days a week? We are very fortunate to have this level of service in our small rural community. If you see the bay doors open when driving by, stop in and say hello to these men and women who are willing to put their lives on the line for you.

Handy Hint:  Prevent delicate necklaces from knotting by opening the clasp, feeding the chain through a straw (cut it in half if necessary), then closing the clasp.

Thought for Today:  No one ever says, “It’s only a game,” when their team is winning.

Until next time . . . remember to take time to enjoy the WONDERs all around us.

WV postcard available at Monthly Monday Meeting

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

NextDoor Wonder Valley

NextDoor Wonder Valley

We did it! We got signed up for NextDoor. It's a PRIVATE social network, so when you join you have to prove that you live in Wonder Valley. For instance, if your phone is billed to your street address in Wonder Valley they'll call you or send you a signin code. They have other ways, too. If you have any trouble, let me know and I'll try to help.

Sign up here:

It took some work but I got them to make ALL of Wonder Valley ONE neighborhood. It's not supposed to be more than 2000 houses, but I managed to convince them it wasn't. There was some finessing since NextDoor was kind of designed for cities and we're a different animal.

NextDoor is a really good tool to use in conjunction with a Neighborhood Watch. I encourage everyone to sign up and give it a try. If we want things to change for the good, we'll all have to take a few small steps to make that happen. If you find you don't like NextDoor down the line, you can always unsubscribe.

Sign up here:

Watch the video if you need a nudge:

Hope to see you there soon. - Teresa Sitz, MAC Delegate

New Wonder Valley Postcards

I'll bring these to the next Monthly Monday Meeting, July 13 from 9-11 a.m. at the Wonder Valley Community Center and make sure everyone gets to take some home.

The one on the left is the Community Center, of course, and the one of the right is the back yard of the Palms during a rain.

Wonder Valley Olive Oil

Alison Carroll on Wonder Valley and Her Favorite L.A. Haunts

Alison Altomari and Jay Carroll produce Wonder Valley Olive Oil and were featured in the April 2015 issue of Style Magazine. I met with Alison in Los Angeles and learned that she and Jay are big fans of Wonder Valley and are looking for a house in the area. The olive oil is not produced in Wonder Valley. It can be purchased at BKB Ceramics in Joshua Tree. You'll need to pay for it with city dollars, though, as a single bottle costs around $30.
"Wonder Valley is a sun-bleached, high desert town 30 miles east of Joshua Tree that we’ve been going to the past few years. There’s room in the desert—room to think, create, and contribute. There is a timelessness that feels like such a departure from living in big cities. Wonder Valley is a unique place that’s home to artists and outsiders, recluses and rock climbers, marines and motorbikers, who converge to inhabit the uninhabitable, and in effect create a place that is unlike any other. Ultimately our brand is just applying that to a state of mind and furnishing that far-out home by creating one beautiful product at a time."

Kip's Desert Book Club - Vermillion Sands

From Kip:

Many thanks to Ken Sitz for suggesting the fantastic book of short stories by J.G. Ballard, Vermilion Sands, for our July 6th book club meeting. It will transport you to a futuristic desert resort community, where clouds are carved by sailplanes, sculptures sing, and mysterious women in long flowing dresses float silently in the dark. Equally impressive will be our meeting place, the Glass Outhouse gallery in Wonder Valley. Laurel and Frank are eagerly awaiting our arrival.

Drive 4 miles east of the town of 29 Palms on Highway 62 and turn right on Thunder Road, where you will see the "Book Club" sign and the gallery sign. The water tank painted to look like a giant Pepsi can is a good landmark to watch for too. If you pass the airport, turn around - you went too far.  Ladies, don't forget to wear your longest, flowiest dresses! Resort wear for gentlemen is highly recommended. I look forward to sharing this special book, and a cocktail with you on a warm summer evening.

Monday, July 6, 2015, 7 PM
The Glass Outhouse
77575 29 Palms Highway at Thunder Road
Wonder Valley, CA

This is the tenth meeting of Kip's Desert Book Club.  Learn more about this monthly gathering.

Hot summer sunsets

Last weekend's hot and humid weather provided the clouds for a beautiful sunset. Teresa Sitz took these pictures out Amboy nearing Sheep Hole Pass.

Cooling Stations

There are two cooling centers available to residents of Wonder Valley - neither very near. but still available:

Senior Center, 6539 Adobe Road in Twentynine Palms, across from the Fire Station and MBTA Transit Center. Open 9 to 5 Monday thru Friday. In extreme heat, the center may stay open evenings and Sat. or Sun., and has a generator in case of power outages. Water available; no food service night or weekends. No pets allowed inside. Assistance: Senior Center 760-367-5780, MBTA bus 760-366-2395, Palms-N-Paws Animal Shelter 760-367-0157. Remember: Drink plenty of fluids (water, not sugary drinks), wear lightweight clothing, limit outdoor activities to early morning or evening hours, and check on family, friends, and neighbors during extremely hot weather to make sure they are safe and comfortable. Stay safe!

Hi-Desert Medical Center, at White Feather Road in Joshua Tree, behind the County Buildings, will once again serve as a “cooling station” for the Morongo Basin in the event of excessive heat or should Southern California Edison experience power outages during the summer. Cooling stations are air-conditioned facilities where local residents may go for temporary relief from extreme heat. The cooling station at Hi-Desert Medical Center is in the cafeteria of the main hospital, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Pets are not allowed (service animals are permitted).

Twentynine Palms Branch Library
6078 Adobe Rd. Twentynine Palms, CA 92277
(760) 367-9519
Mon, Tues, Wed 11 am-7 pm
Thur 10 am-6 pm
Sat 9 am-5 pm

Tips on keeping pets safe when it's hot.

List of all Cooling Stations in San Bernardino County

Saturday, June 13, 2015

Crime Statistics for Wonder Valley

Crime Statistics for Wonder Valley

When my  husband, my neighbor, and I met with Sargent Rick Millard and Specialist Robert Anderson at the San Bernardino Sheriff's Department a couple of weeks ago I was given recent crime statistics for Wonder Valley.

              JAN    FEB     MAR    APR

Calls      62      59      78     51  = 250

Reports    15       7       7      4  =  33    

Arrests     1       1       1      0  =   3

There has been a rash of robberies in the area, through the entire Morongo Basin, actually. At the last MAC meeting Captain Mondary gave us a list of things that would help protect our properties. I'm going to post these and elaborate on a few of them

1. Lock everything up all the time.
You may feel that you don't need to do this, but please remember, any time anyone gets robbed it makes it more dangerous for the rest of us - so please, lock your gates, your houses, your windows, and your cars. This is the first step in "target hardening," making your place more difficult for thieves to hit.

If you leave your windows open at night or when you're away for your swamp cooler, cut dowels or buy some window locks that let you leave the windows open a bit. Dowels are cheap and easy to cut.

2. Leave your lights on at night or use motion detectors.
People are very fond of their dark skies out here so if your neighborhood doesn't support flood lights, install motion detector lights. Lights going on can be unsettling to thieves.

3. Know your neighbors. Watch out for each other.
You may have neighbors you are not particularly fond of, or have never met, but anyone getting robbed is bad for everyone so please keep an eye out for all your neighbors. Take down notes - time of day, make, model and color of any vehicles, license numbers if possible, descriptions of the suspects. Call 911.

4. Start a Neighborhood Watch.
We're starting a Neighborhood Watch in Wonder Valley and window signs are available at the monthly Monday meeting. The next one is Monday, July 13, at 9:00 a.m. at the WV Community Center, 80526 Amboy Rd, Wonder Valley, CA 92277. The only rule is that you have to be watching someone else's house and someone has to be watching yours.

Wonder Valley Neighborhood Watch window sign.
Technically, Wonder Valley already has a successful Neighborhood Watch as everyone tells me they're already watching out for their neighbors. Making it official will give us a few tools that will help us enhance what we're already doing!

5. Keep detailed notes on anything suspicious – day, time, descriptions,etc.
Again, keep detailed notes on anything you see. Keep a little notebook, or use the camera on your cellphone. Do not approach people and do not put yourself in harm's way. Call the Sheriff's Department directly, and bring your notes to the monthly Monday meeting, too.

6. Invest in an alarm and/or a security system.
The price of security systems has dropped. Nowadays they have fancy wireless ones. If you have WIFI, just stick up the cameras and other security devices, read the QR code with your smart phone (if you have one) and your phone will ring if anything is tripped. You can check your house through the cameras on your phone and call the Sheriff - even if you're AWAY from your property.

These tips are mine.

7. Be careful about the workmen you hire.
You may be inviting someone unscrupulous to case your property or your that of your neighbor's. Don't tell them your schedule. Don't give them information about your neighbors.

8. Don't announce trips or vacations on social media.
Post the pictures after the fact, but don't let people know when you won't be home.

9. Don't leave scrap or free materials out for anyone to pick up.
Don't train people to come to your property and your neighborhood and take anything that isn't nailed down.

10. REPORT ALL CRIMES (this should be #1)
Some of you have told me this hasn't been a fruitful effort for you in the past. That might be true, but it's also very true that the squeaky wheel gets the grease. If we don't report crime the SBSD can't do anything but assume that we have very little crime out here. If you report a crime, feel free to send me a note at telling me what you reported and if you received a response. I'm your MAC delegate and the MAC meets with the Sheriff's Department every month.

Where's Heather?

"Sewing while waiting to be processed like a piece of sausage.. it kills the jumpy nerves and invites fantastic conversations, in this case with a lovely lady in a salmon pink suit that sat behind me for a while. She looked at me puzzled and a bit disapprovingly at first, perhaps due to the snake on my inappropriately bare leg.. but then she filled my ear with stories of which I'm proud to report I understood 25%."

Wonder Valley's own artist, Heather Johnson, is riding her motorcycle to the other end of the Americas In Search of the Frightening and Beautiful. She's made it as far as Panama City, Panama.

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Desert Trail Column, June 11, 2015

Desert Trail Column, June 11, 2015, by Karen Meyers and Darlene Parris

Lee Jesmain asked that we put something in the column warning people about the Microsoft scammers that are working overtime right now! They try to sell you a “fix” for your computer for over $300. They tell you that your computer has a virus or malware or Trojan horse or whatever, and try to convince you that it is a dire emergency. Please be aware that Microsoft does NOT call you on the phone to tell you of emergencies. Just hang up.

San Bernardino County Scam Alert
The USDA Food Distribution will take place on Monday, June 15 at the Wonder Valley Community Center, 80526 ½ Amboy Road, from 11 to noon. The wonderful He Provides Ministry will also be there to distribute free clothing and household items to those who need them.

Just in case you haven’t decided on a destination for your summer vacation, there is an Ice Cream Days celebration in Iowa and a Banana Split Festival in Ohio this week. Need we say more?

The Alfred Hitchcock film “Psycho” premiered 45 years ago this week. Millions of moviegoers (including Karen Meyers) avoided the shower after the thriller’s debut! Karen lived in an old, small, creaky-floored apartment where the shower was not in the bathroom – it was at the end of the hallway, with only a shower curtain separating her and any knife-wielding nut sneaking down the hall! By the way, even “Psycho” star Janet Leigh said she avoided showers for a long time.

We send out Rainbows-of-Pearls-and-Roses to Bill Hague, Robert Adams, Rosemary Evans and Josiah Bevins who are all celebrating their special days this week. Happy, happy birthday to all of you!

Speaking of birthdays, others celebrating special days this week include Joseph C. “Joe” Montana, Jr (59), Marv Albert (born Marvin Philip Aufrichtig, 72), Tim Allen (62), Stephanie Maria “Steffi” Graf (46), Jim Belushi (61), Roberto Duran (64), Greg Kinnear (52), Joe Piscopo (64), Phil Mickelson (45), Patricia “Pat” Summitt (63), Malcolm McDowell (72), Timothy Busfield (58) and Hugh Laurie (56).

Tai Chi classes are held every Wednesday morning at 10 at the Wonder Valley Community Park, next to the fire station and community center. There is no charge for the classes.

Handy Hint:  Remove a spray can nozzle (such as on spray paint) that is the same size and shape as a WD-40 nozzle, place it on a can of WD-40 and give it a quick shot. Remove it and place it back on the original spray can and it will be nice and clean and will not clog up.

Thought for Today:  A dog wags its tail with its heart.

Until next time . . . remember to take time to enjoy the WONDERs all around us.

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

MAC Notes for Wonder Valley, June 8, 2015

MAC* NOTES for Wonder Valley, June 8, 2015

  1. Call to order
  2. Pledge of Allegiance
  3. Roll Call:Pioneer Town – Vacant; Yucca Mesa – Elizabeth KARMAN – absent; Landers – Vacant; Joshua Tree – Mark LUNDQUIST – present; Flamingo Heights – Lib KOENIG – present; Desert Heights – Pat FLANAGAN – present; Wonder Valley – Teresa SITZ – present; Morongo Valley – Gayl SWARAT – present; Copper Mountain Mesa – Mary Helen TUTTLE – present.
  4. Adoption of the Agenda – unanimous
  5. Approval of the Minutes from May 11, 2015 – unanimous
  6. Call for Public Comment
    A. Ed Vallerand – status of the Desert Heights Fire Department
    B. Al Marchese – agreement between Joshua Basin Water District and Hi-Desert Medical Center
    C. Thomas Fjallstam– burglaries and ADA lawsuits against small businesses
    D. Tom O’Key – bobcats and public comment at the Board of Supervisors on WEMO
    E. David Ficke – Noah Purifoy at LACMA
    F. Almut Fleck – Diane Feinstein’s desert preservation bill and OHVs
    G. Teresa Sitz – no dumping signs
  7. Public Safety Reports
    A. County Fire – John Chamberlain, Division Chief, South Desert
    It’s fire season – open fires are illegal. Call 911 if you see an open fire and a truck will be dispatched. Permits are required for fire pits. Barbecues, like in Webers, are permitted.
    B. CHP – Joan Griffin
    Be prepared with summer driving. Carry water and extra supplies. You don’t want to break down east of Twentynine Palms. (Yep! She actually said that!) She said to call Code Enforcement for dumping, that they have been tracking people down and citing them.
    C. Sheriff’s Department – Captain Mondary. There were 10 burglaries in April and 6 auto thefts. He suggested talking the following steps to reduce burglaries:
    - Keep your doors and windows locked.
    - Leave your lights on at night or use motion detectors.
    - Know your neighbors. Watch out for each other.
    - Start a Neighborhood Watch.
    - Keep detailed notes on anything suspicious – day, time, descriptions,etc.
    - Invest in an alarm.
    - Invest in a security system.
  8. Presentation – Drought 101, Marina West, General Manager of the Bighorn Desert View Water Agency,
    The presentation focused on state mandated water cutbacks for residents and how desert communities and disadvantaged communities, who have already drastically cut back, may be unable to cut back further. A one-size-fits-all approach to water conversation may not yield the biggest water savings.
  9. Community, Officer and Committee Reports
    My Wonder Valley Report is posted at:
  10. Adjournment.

* The MAC is the Morongo Basin Municipal Advisory Council. Nine delegates represent nine unincorporated communities including Copper Mountain Mesa, Desert Heights, Flamingo Heights, Joshua Tree, Landers, Morongo Valley, Pioneertown, Wonder Valley, and Yucca Mesa. The council advises San Berndardino Supervisor James Ramos, 3rd District.

Bat Country Summer Slam - 4th of July - All Ages!

HDU, Dirt Bag, and Radio Free Joshua Tree presents
Saturday, July 4th - All ages 

Poop, the Hick-ups, Loc Jaw, Vatican Assassins, Incomsiderate Jerks, the Gashers, Agent 86 (Las Vegas), the Flickers, Tanzler, Patient Zero, Tracy Chaos, Underground Alliance, Down Fall, Withdrawal Symptoms, Horror Clinic Herbert, Infected

MD'd by Jeff "JJ Star" Duran

 The Palms, 83131 Amboy Road, Wonder Valley, CA

MAC Report for Wonder Valley, Monday, June 8, 2015

I attended the MAC* meeting Monday night and read the following report for Wonder Valley. I'd read it earlier in the day at the Meet 'n' Greet at the Wonder Valley Community Center. - Teresa Sitz


It was a busy month for Wonder Valley.

The new quarterly publication Desert Oracle was featured in the LA Times on May 29. Wonder Valley was mentioned, as well as Joshua Tree.

One May 23rd Wonder Valley hosted a public meeting on the BLM’s WEMO Plan. Pat Flanagan gave her presentation. Thank you, Pat. There were 36 people in attendance. Lots of locals volunteered to put the event together. It was a great opportunity to bring together the old timers, those who have lived here since the 50s and 60s, with the newcomers, those who have only lived here 10 or 20 years.

Memorial Day weekend saw an influx of tourists in Wonder Valley for two exciting events. About 60 people gathered at Iron Age Road for a High Desert Test Sites event: Carmen Argote’s Vast Furniture. There was a lecture and an art exhibit, a potluck and camping.

Later that night artist Diane Best screened three of her movies at the Palms as part of Boxoproject’s Joshua Tree-enial. Around 200 people filled the outdoor patio, under a beautiful starry sky and watched Best’s movies accompanied by Reverend Screaming Fingers, Artemis and Wonder Valley’s own, The Renderers.

On June 6 there was a reception celebrating the 6th anniversary of the Glass Outhouse Gallery. Artists included Janet Cole, Christine Lamb and Olive Tosconi. The Luminators provided music.

A couple of neighbors and I met with Sergeant Millard and Specialist Robert Anderson at the Sheriff’s Department last Monday to address ongoing issues in Wonder Valley. We plan to schedule a public safety meeting soon to start a Neighborhood Watch.

We had a Meet and Greet this morning and 14 neighbors attended. We are digitizing photographs of Wonder Valley in the 1970s for an online community photo album.

I also had postcards printed publicizing the Wonder Valley website. They’re available at the front.

Thank you.

* The MAC is the Morongo Basin Municipal Advisory Council. Nine delegates represent nine unincorporated communities including Copper Mountain Mesa, Desert Heights, Flamingo Heights, Joshua Tree, Landers, Morongo Valley, Pioneertown, Wonder Valley, and Yucca Mesa. The council advises San Berndardino Supervisor James Ramos, 3rd District.

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Sign up for the Email List!

Please sign up for the mailing list, especially if you live in Wonder Valley. I'm not asking for real names or other personal information. I just know some of you are not on Facebook and don't often check the Internet, so email may be the best way to get information to you. It will also help if we need to mobilize in case of an emergency. Consider signing up for the email list part of Neighborhood Watch.

In the media | Eric Saks and Laurel Siedl

Way to go, Eric! Thanks for highlighting one of Wonder Valley's greatest treasures.

Listen to Laurel Seidel talking about The Glass Outhouse Gallery with Eric Saks.

Erik Saks and Laurel Seidl
The grounds of the Glass Outhouse Gallery

Fort Williams

Courtesy of Ms. Charlotte Williams, circa 1978
Ms. Charlotte Williams, a long time resident of Wonder Valley, loaned me her desert photo album from the 1970s and gave me permission to post pictures online. I asked Ms. Charlotte about it and she said they never allowed clocks or watches on the property. What a perfect picture to illustrate how different time is out here. Thank you, Charlotte. More photos will be posted as time allows.

Friday, June 5, 2015

Wonder Valley Calendar

Saturday, June 6, 5 - 9 p.m. - Glass Outhouse Gallery will show the works of Janet Cole, Christine Lamb and Olive Toscani. This is the 6th Anniversary Show. The Luminators will perform.

Monday, June 8, 9 - 11 a.m. - Meet 'n' Greet at the Wonder Valley Community Center, 80526 Amboy Road, with your MAC* Delegate, Teresa Sitz.

* MAC - Morongo Basin Municipal Advisory Council consists of delegates representing 9 unincorporated communities in the Morongo Basin. The council advises San Berndardino Supervisor James Ramos, 3rd District.

Monday, June 8, 6:30
MAC Meeting, at the Joshua Tree Community Center, 6171 Sunburst Avenue, Joshua Tree. The public is invited and welcome to attend and participate. I always love looking out and seeing people from Wonder Valley. The meeting isn't very long.

Many Moods of Ben Vaughn, June 7


This week's Many Moods of Ben Vaughn will feature singers singing songs they wrote themselves. Tune in to hear selections by Dolly Parton, Bob Dylan, Arthur Alexander, Paul Siebel, Judee Sill, Bill Withers and more. Full playlist to follow.

Dolly Parton

KCDZ, Joshua Tree, CA (Sundays at 3:00 pm PST)

AVAILABLE AS PODCAST: Now available on iTunes thanks to KCDZ in Joshua Tree, CA.

Thursday, June 4, 2015

Desert Trail Column, June 4, 2015

Pat Flanagan’s presentation about BLM’s West Mojave Plan, held at the Wonder Valley Community Center, went very well and had a good turnout.

On Saturday, June 6, the Glass Outhouse Art Gallery, 77575 29 Palms Highway, will be celebrating its sixth anniversary with the last opening of the season. Come and enjoy the works of artists Janet Cole, Christine Lamb and Olive Tosconi from 5 to 9 pm.

Teresa Sitz, Wonder Valley’s representative on the Basinwide Municipal Advisory Council, will hold another Meet & Greet on Monday, June 8 at our community center from 9 to 11 am. She is urging everyone to bring old Wonder Valley pictures to be scanned and posted to an online community photo album.
The monthly Basinwide MAC meeting will take place on Monday, June 8 at the Joshua Tree Community Center on Sunburst, north of Highway 62, from 6:30 to 8:30 pm. Everyone’s welcome to attend.
Since the birthstone for June is the pearl, and the flower is the rose, we send out Rainbows-of-Pearls-and-Roses to Pappy Parsons who’s celebrating his special day this week. Happy birthday, Pappy!
Darlene’s Commentary: I really like Teresa Sitz. She is interested in everything about Wonder Valley and the folks that live here. Her enthusiasm is definitely contagious, and I believe that our little community might just wake up from the deep slumber we’ve been in for the last ten years or so. Wouldn’t it be nice to have events and something fun again in our beautiful community center?
Karen’s Commentary: Thank you to cousin Annie for sending more stamps, cards and coupons. Also to Joni Daniel for donating a bag of stamps. These items go for good causes, so keep them coming.  Husband Ted spent a couple of fun days at Wilderness Lakes Resort in Menifee with grandson Tony, great-granddaughter Bailee and daughter-in-law Cheri. The fishing wasn’t the greatest, but they did catch a few.
Animal Action League, located just past the dinosaurs on Highway 62 in Joshua Tree, will spay or neuter your dog or cat at a reduced rate. They also offer reduced rates on vaccinations and microchips. Call 760-366-1100 for information.

Handy Hint: To find out where to redeem old trading stamps (such as Green Stamps or Blue Chip Stamps), send a single stamp to Trading Stamp Institute of America, 11 Broadway, New York, New York 10004. They will return the stamp with the information. Most books have a cash value of $1.20. (Even Plaid Stamps which vanished in 1972 can still be redeemed.)

Thought for Today: It’s hard to make a comeback when you haven’t been anywhere.
 Until next time . . . remember to take time to enjoy the WONDERs all around us.

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

MAC Meeting - Monday, June 8, 2015

There will be a Morongo Basin Muncipal Advisory Council (MAC) meeting, Monday, June 8, 2015 starting at 6:30 p.m. The meeting will be at the Joshua Tree Community Center, 6171 Sunburst Avenue, Joshua Tree.

Everyone is invited and welcome to attend and participate.

Meeting Documents are also listed under the MAC tab at the top of the website.

Agenda - June 8, 2015

Minutes - May 11, 2015

Wonder Valley postcard

The new postcards and business cards I made turned out really well. I'll have them at the Meet 'n' Greet on Monday at the Community Center in Wonder Valley.

This image, almost more than any other, says "Wonder Valley" to me, so I chose it for my first postcard. The back has the address to this website.

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Wonder Valley represents on WEMO at Board of Supervisors today

What a lovely group of desert denizens who showed up to give public comment today against the BLM's WEMO plan to put OHV routes in residential neighborhoods adjacent to public property. Look at you all and your wonderful signs. Thank you, everyone!

Comments are due at the BLM by Thursday, June 4 at 4:30 p.m. Send them to:

 or go to:

You may use  Pat's sample letter as is or use it for talking points.:

Monday, June 1, 2015

Glass Outhouse Reception, June 6, 2015

Artist Janet Cole, Christine Lamb and Olive Toscani will be showing their works at the 6th Anniversary Show at the Glass Outhouse on June 6, 2015. Reception: 5 - 9 p.m.

Wonder Valley's own Mark Ross (mandolin) and Paul Gerkin (guitar) are the Luminators and will play at the reception.

Directions: From 29 Palms, head east on Hwy. 62. Gallery is apprx. 3.5 miles east from Utah Trail light on the right @ Thunder Road (Keep an eye out for the tiny church.)
Hours: Tue - Sun, 1:00 - 5:00 pm. Honk when you enter the lot.
Laurel Seidl, gallery owner, 760.367.3807