Thursday, June 27, 2019

Desert Trail : alleged chop shop raided

Deputies raid alleged chop shop

Desert Trail Column - June 27, 2019

Yoga at The Palms with Lorelei Vox Greene will take place at The Palms, 83131 Amboy Road at Thompson Road, on Saturday, June 29 from 8:30 to 9:45 a.m. These classes are donation-based and are open to all skill levels. Call 760-367-2810.
Also on June 29, a free children’s art collage workshop will be held at our Wonder Valley Community Center, 80526 ½ Amboy Road at Blower Road, from noon to 2 p.m. All materials and refreshments will be provided. Children 6 to 17 years are welcome to participate, and must be accompanied by a parent or guardian who will remain at the community center throughout the workshop. All children will take home a completed piece of artwork. Artist Patti Dietrick will lead the workshop. She has taught youth workshops at the 29 Palms Art Gallery and the Beatnik Lounge. To RSVP, call Teresa Sitz at the number provided below.
Most WVCC events are sponsored by our non-profit Friends of Wonder Valley. For additional information on any local event, contact our Coordinator Teresa Sitz at or 760-367-9880.

Penny and Ron Root celebrate 26 years of marriage this week. Happy anniversary, Ron and Penny!
Our great grader operator Tim Candelaria has moved on to greener pastures. We are very sorry to see him go, but we wish him all the best. It looked as though we were not going to be getting any grading done for a long time, but lo and behold! It seems we now have grading being done by a contractor. We’re not sure of all the details, but we strongly believe that the unusually quick response by the county was due to our MAC representative Steve Reyes bringing the issue to the forefront. Thank you, Steve! As before, if you have any questions, compliments, requests or complaints about our graded roads, call 760-367-9880.
Handy Hint: If you share your home with elderly and/or ailing loved ones, here are a few things you can do to make things easier. Paint the insides of kitchen cabinets white for better visibility, use risers to raise the seat level of sofas or chairs, use table lamps with a push-button switch on the base, replace small light switches with larger ones, replace round doorknobs with lever-style handles and leave open floor space under the bathroom sink to accommodate wheelchairs or seats.
Today’s Thought: Bob, a 20-year-old pet goldfish underwent successful surgery at England’s Toll Barn Veterinary Centre to remove a tumor from his fin. During the procedure, the medical team kept him wet to prevent damaged scales and infused the water with an anesthetic.
Until next time . . . remember to take time to enjoy the WONDERs all around us.

Saturday, June 22, 2019

Salvation Army Food Distribution

The Salvation Army Food Distribution takes place starting at 11:00 a.m. on Wednesday, June 26, at the Wonder Valley Community Center, 80526-½ Amboy Road, Wonder Valley, CA 92277. The Community Center is located between the Fire Station and the palm tree cell tower.

Sign up starts at 9 a.m. Please do not line up before 9 a.m. Staff will not arrive until 9 a.m.

The distribution is first come first served, and ends when there is no more food. The distribution is open to Wonder Valley residents, who self-certify on site. No documentation is required, though you will need to fill out a form the first time you attend.

The distribution will be “shopping style.” You will take what you like from a selection of food from Trader Joe’s. Please be mindful that people behind you need food, as well, and only take what you need. There may also be a selection of fresh fruits and vegetables.

Thursday, June 20, 2019

Palms has a new sign.

The Palms Bar and Restaurant, Wonder Valley's only brick and mortar business open to the public, has a new buffalo on their sign, and a rather spacey one at that.

Planets play across the body of the buffalo's silhouette.

Hear tell one of Wonder Valley's finest artists took it upon themselves to replace the shabby shic buffalo that had graced the sign for a decade or more. This person may be breakfasting gratis for some time.

Thanks for the beautification!

Desert Trail Column - June 20, 2019

This month the mobile medical van will be providing basic dental services only at our Wonder Valley Community Center, 80526 ½ Amboy Road at Blower Road, on Wednesday, June 26 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. A dentist will do exams with x-rays, simple restorations and simple extractions. Care is provided regardless of insurance or ability to pay. Appointments are highly recommended; walk-ins will be accepted as time permits. Call 760-820-4131.
Also on June 26, will be the Salvation Army Food Distribution at our community center at 11 a.m. Food will be distributed until gone.
Most WVCC events are sponsored by Friends of Wonder Valley. For additional information on any local event, contact our Coordinator Teresa Sitz at or 760-367-9880.
We send out Rainbows-of-Pearls-and-Roses to Donny Pixley who celebrates his special day this week. Happy birthday, Donny!
Darlene’s Commentary: Have you ever walked into a store where you felt like a stranger on another planet? Well, not at Big Five Sporting Goods. It is one of my favorite stores, hands down. The people that work there provide excellent assistance, and that is why customers return again and again. For instance, when I walk into the shoe department, someone comes to assist me right away. During a recent visit, I ran into a problem that the manager Christina took care of cheerfully and efficiently. Then friendly clerk Nicole rang up my purchase and I went on my merry way. I really love Big Five!
Karen’s Commentary: Last Thursday was going along just fine until my husband Ted announced he’d been stung by a bee. Since he’s allergic to bee stings, this was not good. We grabbed the EpiPens and discovered they’re way past expired, but used one anyway. Amid lots of protest, I called 911. Morongo Basin Ambulance with two young men arrived first, followed by a gigantic fire truck with four young men from Combat Fire. They took excellent care of Ted, and so did the ER staff at Hi Desert Medical Center. Despite a few scary moments, he came through it just fine. Thank God for our healthcare professionals.
Interested in Wonder Valley? Go to and find out everything you ever wanted to know about Wonder Valley but were afraid to ask! Ken and Teresa Sitz do a bang-up job keeping this site loaded with local information.
Handy Hint: After using your can opener, wash it with an abrasive sponge, detergent and hotwater, or run it through a dishwasher. Can openers are notorious for harboring bacteria.
Today’s Thought: A dog who attends a flea circus may steal the show.
Until next time . . . remember to take time to enjoy the WONDERs all around us.

Thursday, June 13, 2019

Desert Trail Column - June 13, 2019

The Community Meeting was very informative. One thing our Morongo Basin Municipal Advisory Council representative Steve Reyes spoke about was registering for the Telephone Emergency Notification System (TENS) by going to This system is designed to send urgent high-speed mass notifications via telephone and text messages.
Yoga at the Palms with Lorelei Vox Greene will take place at The Palms, 83131 Amboy Road, on Saturday, June 15 from 8:15 to 9:45 a.m. This is a donation-based class in which everyone can participate regardless of their skill level. Call 760-361-2810.
The USDA Food Distribution will be held at our Wonder Valley Community Center, 80526 ½ Amboy Road, on Tuesday, June 18, from 9 to noon.
Bob Dougherty, Social Service Aide from the San Bernardino County Department of Aging and Adult Services will be at our community center on Wednesday, June 19, from 11 to noon to assist seniors. His services include giving out bus passes and Farmer’s Market checks, and helping with HEAP applications. Everything is on a first come, first served basis.
Most WVCC events are sponsored by Friends of Wonder Valley. For additional information, contact our Coordinator Teresa Sitz at or call 760-367-9880.
We send out Rainbows-of-Pearls-and-Roses to Josiah Bevins who turns 10 this week. Happy birthday, Josiah!
Karen’s Commentary: I had the pleasure of meeting Donna and Pappy Parsons’ grandson recently. His name is Gavin Lesneski, and he’s 11 years old. This intelligent young man is very adept at carrying on conversations with older adults, which is pretty rare. Thank you, Gavin, for a nice visit.
Darlene’s Commentary: It used to be that our firefighters “lived” at our Wonder Valley Station #45 during each shift, always ready to immediately assist the injured or sick in our area. And just like Fran Becker’s comments, it’s so sad to see our station now just sitting here, silently waiting.
Reach Out Morongo Basin will provide rides to and from the Twentynine Palms Nutrition Site every Tuesday and Thursday. Pickup is at 10 a.m., drop off at 2 p.m., at The Palms. If you have a problem getting to The Palms, they may be able to come directly to your residence. Call 760.361.1410.
Handy Hint: Bring a few office supplies into the kitchen. Use stackable plastic letter trays for unruly packages and bags, and bright-colored bins for items near spoiling or close to expiration dates.

Today’s Thought: Where were you in 1968? During that year, “Mr Rogers’ Neighborhood” debuted on National Educational Television, “In the Heat of the Night” won the Academy Award for Best Picture and the best-selling Christmas toys were Hot Wheels.
Until next time . . . remember to take time to enjoy the WONDERs all around us.

Wednesday, June 12, 2019

County Supervisors Vote to End Controversial Fire Tax


There are two stories here, so be sure to read through to the end. It's a little confusing, and clarifications will probably come out over the next days. It seems that our new 3rd District Supervisor Dawn Rowe is a hero, voting on the side of the people.

Former Supervisor James Ramos was the deciding vote FOR the fire tax last year, his parting gift to San Bernardino, as he left the area to represent the 40th District in the California State Assembly. SBC Fire Chief Mark Hartwig beat it out of town a couple of months later. See:

Receive emergency text messages on your cell phone.

Telephone Emergency Notification System
In an effort to quickly communicate information on impending dangers, the San Bernardino County Sheriff and Fire Departments send high-speed mass notifications via telephone and text messages. This system is known as the Telephone Emergency Notification System (TENS).

The County uses a database of landline telephone numbers, which is updated every six months, to send emergency messages to landline phones only. By signing up below, residents can also receive emergency text messages on their cell phones, add voice over internet phone numbers (V.O.I.P.), and manage their own account using a valid email address. Those without internet connections can sign up by calling 2.1.1 or 888.435.7565.

TENS alerts do not generally go out to the entire County but instead are targeted to affected areas. You must enter a valid San Bernardino County address. This is the address for which you will receive alerts.


  2. Click on the “Emergency Services” TAB.
  3. Click on the “Alert and Warning System” LINK.
  4. Scroll to the bottom of the page, to “Telephone Emergency Notification System”.
  5. Click on the “Sign up here for Emergency Alerts” BUTTON.
  6. Then click on the “Register Swift 911” BUTTON and follow the directions.

If you don’t have Internet, you can sign up by calling 2-1-1, or (888) 435-7565.

Monday, June 10, 2019

Improv at the Palms

Noon - 3 p.m.
Saturday, June 15, 2019
The Palms Restaurant
83131 Amboy Road
Wonder Valley CA 92277

Ever experience Organic Comedy? Once you try improv, you'll never go back to regular, store-bought comedy ever again. Learn to leave yourself at the door, accept whatever comes your way and to build on it. At this workshop, led by HEATHER CLISBY, we'll learn the basics of comedy improv - making up characters and scenes on-the-spot. We will play like children. You can expect spontaneous joy, unexpected insight and solid belly laughs. The only wrong answer in the class is "No." Come join!

Cost: donation (suggested $5-$10). Whatever you're comfortable with.

Heather Clisby has worked with people of all ages and experience (or lack of it!). We guarantee that you're going to have fun at this !!

Free Children’s Art Collage Workshop.

Summer is the time to participate in fun family experiences with your kids. This art collage workshop will inspire both imagination and creativity.All materials, and refreshments, will be provided.

Children will enjoy a relaxed environment, encouraging participation and expression of ideas. They will take home a finished piece of artwork. Parent/guardian will work beside their kids, or just chill on the sidelines in our lucious air conditioning.

This workshop will give your kids the skills to work on their own at home.

Children ages 6 - 17 are welcome with their parent/guardian. You must remain at the WVCC through the entire workshop.

Noon to 2 p.m., Saturday, June 20, 2019
Wonder Valley Community Center
80526-½ Amboy Road, Wonder Valley, CA 92277
Next to the palm tree cell tower.

Artist patti dietrick will lead the workshop. She has taught youth workshops at the 29 Palms Gallery, and the Beatnik Lounge, in Joshua Tree.

RSVP is appreciated. Call Teresa Sitz at (760) 367-9880, or email at

This program is sponsored by the Friends of Wonder Valley, a 501(c)(3) charitable organization.

USDA Food Distribution.

The USDA Food Distribution will begin at 9:00 a.m. and end at noon on Tuesday, June 18, at the Wonder Valley Community Center, 80526-½ Amboy Road, Wonder Valley CA 92277. The Community Center is next to the Fire Station.

Low income Wonder Valley residents self-certify on site. No ID or other documentation is required. You may pick up ONE (1) box for a neighbor, or they may pick up ONE (1) box for you, IF a signed pick up form is presented. One pick up per person. Pick up forms are available online at They are also available at the WVCC on Mondays, Wednesdays, or Saturdays from 9 a.m. - 2 p.m., and at the kiosk outside the WVCC the week before the event.

For more information, call Teresa Sitz at (760) 367-9880.

The text below is required.

Nondiscrimination Statement
In accordance with Federal civil rights law and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) civil rights regulations and policies, the USDA, its Agencies, offices, and employees, and institutions participating in or administering USDA programs are prohibited from discriminating based on race, color, national origin, sex, disability, age, or reprisal or retaliation for prior civil rights activity in any program or activity conducted or funded by USDA.

Persons with disabilities who require alternative means of communication for program information (e.g. Braille, large print, audiotape, American Sign Language, etc.), should contact the Agency (State or local) where they applied for benefits. Individuals who are deaf, hard of hearing or have speech disabilities may contact USDA through the Federal Relay Service at (800) 877-8339. Additionally, program information may be made available in languages other than English.

To file a program complaint of discrimination, complete the USDA Program Discrimination Complaint Form, (AD-3027) found online at:, and at any USDA office, or write a letter addressed to USDA and provide in the letter all of the information requested in the form. To request a copy of the complaint form, call (866) 632-9992. Submit your completed form or letter to USDA by:

(1) mail: U.S. Department of Agriculture
Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights
1400 Independence Avenue, SW
Washington, D.C. 20250-9410;

(2) fax: (202) 690-7442; or

(3) email:

This institution is an equal opportunity provider.

Dental Care debuts in Wonder Valley.

IMMEDIATE RELEASE - MMU debuts dental services in Wonder Valley
Karen Graley <> Mon, Jun 3, 2019 at 3:49 PM

Contact: Karen Graley, Director Communications

760.853.3027   |


The Morongo Basin Healthcare District’s Mobile Medical Unit will provide basic dental services, Wednesday, June 26, at the Wonder Valley Community Center, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. (NOTE: No medical services will be offered this day).

A dentist will be on board, providing dental exams with x-rays, simple restorations and simple extractions. Endodontist services, crowns and dentures will not be provided on board.

Medi-Cal and IEHP are accepted. A discounted fee-for-service is available for those without insurance. Care is provided regardless of insurance status or ability to pay. 

Appointments are highly recommended.  To schedule an appointment, call 760-820-4131.   Walk-ins will be accepted as time permits.

The Mobile Medical Unit is an extension of the Morongo Basin Healthcare District’s Community Health Center, which operates full dental services in both Yucca Valley and 29 Palms.

Morongo Basin Healthcare District seeks to improve the health and wellness of residents who live within its designated boundaries. Services of the healthcare district include the Morongo Basin Community Health Center with offices in Twentynine Palms and Yucca Valley; and LIFT Transportation Services, providing free, non-emergency transportation to medical appointments. Business offices of the Morongo Basin Healthcare District are located at 6530 La Contenta Road, Suite 100 Yucca Valley | 760.820.9229 |


Karen Graley, Director Communications & Board Clerk



Privileged And Confidential Communication: This electronic transmission, and any documents attached hereto, (a) are protected by the Electronic Communications Privacy Act (18 USC §§ 2510-2521), (b) may contain confidential and/or legally privileged information, and (c) are for the sole use of the intended recipient named above. If you have received this electronic message in error, please notify the sender and delete the electronic message. Any disclosure, copying, distribution, or use of the contents of the information received in error is strictly prohibited.

Thursday, June 6, 2019

Desert Trail Column - June 6, 2019

The Glass Outhouse Art Gallery’s tenth anniversary celebration had a big crowd, a huge anniversary cake, delicious food, great music and fantastic artwork! The entire property’s amazing, with a real glass outhouse, trails winding throughout the acreage and interesting creations everywhere. Darlene’s favorite was a white metal family of goats!
A Community Meeting is scheduled for Saturday, June 8 at our Wonder Valley Community Center, 80526 ½ Amboy Road, at 11 a.m., with pizza being served! Our Morongo Basin Municipal Advisory Council representative Steve Reyes will discuss the 911 system, security issues and the upcoming MAC meeting on Monday, June 10 at the Joshua Tree Community Center, 6171 Sunburst, at 5:30 p.m.

Since the birthstone for June is the pearl and the flower the rose, we send out Rainbows-of-Pearls-and-Roses to Pappy Parsons and Bill Hague who celebrate their special days this week. Happy birthday, Bill and Pappy!
Ironically, both of the following commentaries were written about the same business. Darlene’s was written before hearing about the upcoming closure, Karen’s was written after.

Darlene’s Commentary: I’ve been a customer of Bank of America for 25+ years and have had good service until now. It started when the ATMs in Twentynine Palms were torn down without warning, then immediately replaced, reassuring everyone that there was no problem. Not long after this, signs went up on the BRAND NEW ATMs that they would soon be permanently removed! Even though we have since been reassured several times that BofA is “working on” replacing those ATMs, it is now coming up on six months without any. Believe it or not, many of us do not have computers or Internet capability to do banking online (even if we wanted to), so it is a 72-mile round trip to get to the closest BofA ATMs! This is ridiculous!! Bank of America, PLEASE install some ATMs in Twentynine Palms.

Karen’s Commentary: Talk about the “end of an era” – how about the “end of almost a lifetime?” I’ve been a Bank of America customer since 1961 – 58 years! Through thick and thin, home mortgages and car loans, we have always had a checking and a savings account with Bank of America all these years. Now the only branch left in the Morongo Basin will be closing on September 10. In their notification, it states that you can still do all your banking online or by phone – nothing is mentioned about using an ATM, by the way. Well, let me tell you, when you have a problem, having to contact someone in Texas, Chicago, Florida or beyond just does not cut it, not to mention the HOURS spent on hold, navigating websites and/or pressing buttons! So long, Bank of America.

Monday, June 3, 2019

Jamie Lee Dimes and Davis.

Starts at 7 p.m., Saturday, June 8, 2019
The Palms
83131 Amboy Road, Wonder Valley CA 92277

Australian artist Jamie-Lee Dimes hits the road kicking off her “Waste of Time” North American Tour, May 22nd. Performing a series of intimate shows across the country, on the lead up to the release of her forthcoming record.

Dimes spent the first quarter of 2019 in Melbourne, Australia, in the studio recording with Mick Turner (guitarist from The Dirty Three.) Releasing her single Waste of Time (recorded with Kate Dillon  and Gabriella Cohen) and touring Australia.The album was written after spending a year between New York, the California desert and Mexico. The new direction of Jamie-Lee Dimes’ forthcoming record is hypnotic, ethereal, folk-melancholy. Marking a new chapter into a lighter headspace from Dimes’ brooding and cinematic six-track EP 'Liminality' that was released at the end of 2016.

Special screening of the music video shot in the Mojave desert, followed by a performance and desert after party.

$5 suggested donation entry

Playing with JT local artist, desert goddess DAVIS!

North American tour dates:
May 22: The Living Stage, Baltimore, MD
May 23: The Living Stage, Washington, DC
May 28: The Living Stage, Brooklyn, NY
May 31: Open Studios Block Party, NY
June 6: Landers Brewery, Landers, CA
June 7: The Salty Frog, San Diego, CA
June 8: The Palms, Wonder Valley, CA
June 20: Holland Project, Reno, NV
June 30: Gold Diggers, Los Angeles, CA
July 13: The Woods, Vancouver, Canada


Aging and Adult Services.

     Bob Dougherty, our Social Service Aide, from the SBC Department Of Aging & Adult Services, will be giving out some bus passes for seniors and helping them with HEAP applications, from 9:30 a.m. to 11 a.m., on June 12, at the Twentynine Palms Senior Center, 6539 Adobe Road, just off the Twentynine Palms Highway.
     He’ll be at the Wonder Valley Community Center from 11 a.m. until noon, on Wednesday, June 19. He may still have Farmers Market checks for seniors. All seniors are welcome to come and find out about the services he offers.

Sunday, June 2, 2019

The 2019 Senior Farmers Market Nutrition Program is now available to seniors 60 years and older living in San Bernardino County. Checks for $20 may be used to purchase fruits, vegetables, herbs, and honey at participating California Certified Farmers Markets in SBC, such as the 29 Palms Farmers Market at the corner of Highway 62 and Desert Queen Avenue, in Twentynine Palms.

The checks will be available from 8 a.m. till noon, on Saturday, June 8, at the 29 Palms Farmers Market. They will also be available at the Joshua Tree Farmers Market in the parking lot just off Highway 62 and Sunset Road, on June 15.

If there are remaining checks, and you qualify, you may pick them up at the Wonder Valley Community Center from  11 a.m. until noon on Wednesday, June 19.

For more information and income guidelines, call the County of San Bernardino Senior Information and Assistance at (800) 510-2020, or go to:

A proxy form is included at the link above. Your proxy may sign up for the program for you, receive the checks, and make purchases.

Wonder Valley Community Meeting, June 8, 2019

Everyone is invited and welcome to attend and participate in the
Wonder Valley Community Meeting
11 a.m. to 1 p.m., Saturday, June 8, 2019
at the
Wonder Valley Community Center
80526-1/2 Amboy Road
Wonder Valley CA 92277

The WVCC is between the palm tree cell phone tower and the old fire station.

Our new Wonder Valley Municipal Advisory Council Delegate, Steve Reyes, will be introduced. He will be speaking about the 911 system, and other issues regarding security in our little corner of the Mojave Desert. He will also be bringing pizzas, so bring your appetite.

The agenda for this meeting was posted on the kisosk at the WVCC and online 
posted 6:10 a.m., on Sunday, June 2, 2019.
posted 12:30 p.m., June 12, 2019

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact the WVCC Coordinator, Teresa Sitz, at, or call (760) 367-9880.

[Originally published at 1 p.m., May 25, 2019]