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Year 2013 in review: July though December

Year 2013 in review: July though December

January 8th, 2014 in News


It was reported at the top of the front page of the July 3 issue that a squirrel caused the low water pressure many residents woke up to June 26. The squirrel had made contact with the transformer and fuse bank, blowing all the fuses and shutting the well down. The water pressure did not go lower than 22 pounds, so no boil order was necessary. At the first regular summer school board meeting, Alyssa Wright was presented with a California High School diploma.

The Community Ensemble celebrated 10 years with a special concert on July 7 at the Finke Theatre.

Clinton Campbell completed his Eagle Scout project of collecting hearing aids for the Missouri School for the Deaf. Presented with Eagle Scout awards were Gavin Pickering, Trevor Michael Barbour, Garrett Michael Johnson and Simon Louis Schroeter.

Red Cross Swimming Lessons were offered at the California swimming pool.

A restroom building at Proctor Park damaged by a vehicle during a snowstorm during the winter was demolished. A new restroom will be built but not at the same location.

Because of vandalism problems, the restrooms at Proctor Park were to be locked at night.

The July 10 edition featured the Independence Day parade and the fireworks display later that evening.

Funnel clouds were sighted July 3 over California, but were thought to be cold air funnels rather than tornadoes.

The Moniteau County audit showed several areas of needed improvement. The County commissioners began working with each of the county offices to improve operation, such as computer security. Fireworks was the source of a fire that destroyed a home on July 4.

High Point Veterans Memorial was unveiled on Independence Day

Emily Thibon performed with Dance Ovations at Tonanzio's Theater, Guthrie, for a "jukebox time machine" music performance. Carissa Michelle Pike, granddaughter of Dr. Ned Hug and Jerelyn Hug, California, was preparing to travel to Wyoming to perform with the Missouri High School rodeo team.

At the top of the July 17 issue, 3MT Lifechangers worked on area properties. The group volunteers to do work on homes of people in need.

The Dollar General store opened in its new location in the Village Green Shopping Center. The new steeple was put on the new Flag Spring Baptist Church building. The 1879 building was destroyed Nov. 30, 2012.

The farm section included stories on crops and harvest.

The Moniteau County Historical Society hosted the annual ice cream social fundraiser. The Prairie Home Fair was reported.

In the July 24 edition of the Democrat, 3MT Lifechanger volunteers completed their work in the area. The California School Board approved replacement of the parent notification program, a program which allows alerts on cellphones and Iphones.

CPI began looking for another project since the Finke Theatre is soon to be turned over to the Friends of the Finke.

A visitor from Madrid, Spain, stayed with the family of Bruce and Louisa Rosenmiller for five weeks.

Tipton celebrated Towne Square days. Miss Tipton was Courtney Dunn and the First Runner Up was Logan Diggs.

About 55 large hay bales burned south of town along Route T.

The 147th year for the Moniteau County Fair received top press in the July 31 issue. Dollar General held its grand opening. The annual Back to School Fair in which school supplies are distributed and checkups are done, drew more people than the previous year.

Additional information was reported on the recent audit by the state on the county.

Kyndra Davis, 6, and Lillian Davis, 5, were set to compete in National American Miss Missouri.

Jamestown and California Fire Protection Districts received matching grants.


California selected Mike Ward as the new police chief on Aug. 5, and it was reported in the Aug. 7 edition.

The county fair took up much of the paper with reports of what was to come and what was done. The parade was Saturday morning. The horse show was that evening. The Sunday Vespers Service took place on a pleasant evening. Monday was the truck and tractor pull as well as the pedal tractor pull.

The Aug. 14 issue of the paper wrapped up the Moniteau County Fair. Amy Masterson was selected as Miss Moniteau. Jaxon Scrivner and Ada Cassil were Little Mr. and Miss Moniteau County. Photos in the paper included the car show, the livestock shows, art hall, senior citizens day, team penning, demolition derby, tractor pull, draft horse pull, Figure 8 race and Tuff Truck Scramble, baby show, halter calf show, and more.

In other news, the California R-I School staff took part in an intruder training session at the high school.

Top news in the Aug. 21 issue included a visit of Rep. Vickie Hartzler to California and the MRED board tour of Arkansas Valley Feathers. The business started in 1975 and is a major dealer of feathers throughout the world.

Mark Inglish was named the winner of the Kiwanis fundraiser, The Cow Patty Drop. The annual Waylon Martensen 5K Walk/Run was held Saturday, Aug. 17.

Students returned to classes at several local schools. Kelsey Bias, Russellville, took grand champion and first place winner in the FFA ham contest.

A reception was held for retiring county assessor Darrel King.

Mid-Mo Ambulance District kept the property tax at zero.

The Salem U.C.C. Ice Cream Social took place in great weather. It is the only fundraiser of the congregation. The event has been going on for more than 40 years. The congregation dates back to 1848. The "new" church built in 1858 still serves the congregation.


The Sept. 4 issue of the California Democrat reported past news - that of the High Point and Labor Day celebrations - news of events to come - the California Ozark Ham and Turkey Festival - and political news - the swearing in of Assessor Melissa Hentges.

In addition, it was announced that California Rural Fire Protection District had received a $1,000 donation to be used for training supplies.

Clinton Campbell received his Eagle Scout Award.

The tour of the California R-I School Board's tour of the districts facilities before the Aug. 21 board meeting was reported. California Police Officer Lindell Reed left his full-time position with the police department. He is a computer specialist with Huber and Associates, Inc. He will remain as Reserve Officer with the department.

Adam Chesser deployed to Afghanistan with his unit.

The Sept. 11 edition of the paper announced that new California Police Chief Mike Ward was sworn in at the regular city council meeting. The new Commercial Driver License requirements were also discussed at the meeting. A retirement dinner was held for former Police Chief Fred Kirchoff.

The California third graders had a grandparents day. The CHS students advanced in choir competition.The Oerlys were chosen as the State Fair Farm Family for Moniteau County.

The Sept. 18 issue promoted the 23rd Ozark Ham and Turkey Festival with information for those planning their day.

Mid-Mo Ambulance District approved the budget for the coming year.

The MRED Board toured Koechner Manufacturing in Tipton after the regular meeting. A meeting by Capital Region Medical Center personnel at Nic Nac Restaurant featured plans for expansion.

Mayor Norris Gerhart signed a Constitution Week proclamation promoted by the DAR.

Jamestown St. Paul's Evangelical celebrated its 150th anniversary. Mount Pleasant Baptist was set to observe its 190th birthday.

The Ozark Ham and Turkey Festival was the big news in the Sept. 25 issue. Held the previous Saturday, the day started off a little on the cool side for the 5K Walk/Run on the east side of Village Green Shopping Center and the Kiwanis Ham Breakfast at the Commerce Bank lot across from the courthouse, but warmed up nicely with no weather extremes for the day. All planned events went much as expected with shows on the North Stage, South Stage, Barbecue Stage and Finke Theatre. In addition, the events at the fairgrounds - Figure 8 and tuff truck races and the baby show - drew good crowds.

The California School Board approved continuing the tutoring program and the board spent its second "paperless" session continuing to get used to the laptop computers.

A Chamber of Commerce ribbon-cutting was held for the new business, "Winding Road" on Oak Street.

It was announced that Russellville has a "Little Free Library" started by Eugene and Gladys Moll. It does not compete with other libraries, but complements them. People can leave a book, take a book or both. The concept started in Wisconsin and has spread to about 9,000 sites.

California second graders visited city hall and held a mock city council meeting.

Dennis Bieri retired after 43 years at the Prairie Home CO-OP.


The Oct. 2 edition started with the California High School Homecoming celebration. Crowned were Queen Libby Martin, King Alexx Lewis, Princess Emily Thibon and Prince Matt Oerly. The parade was featured on the inside pages.

The Shooters Club hosted a dinner for National Hunting and Fishing Day.

A report of a "Food Dialogues: Columbia" meeting in which a team specialists discussed how lack of understanding jeopardizes animal welfare.

California was set to host a Farmers Market on Friday, Oct. 4, across from city hall.

A PTO carnival was held at California Elementary School on Saturday, Sept. 28.

The Oct. 9 issue of the paper reported a dozen vendors attended the Farmers Market event. A California fire fighter and the Fire Pup mascot visited some of the kindergartners of the elementary school.

The California City Council was informed of the completion of the the sewer improvement project in the Marshall Addition. The ball fields have also been improved.

A second report of a "Food Dialogues: Columbia" meeting related the discussion of a team specialists about organic, genetically modified and genetically engineered plants and animals. The benefits or problems of all of these appears to be up to the point of view of the individual.

Felony drug charges were filed against two county residents.

In the Oct. 16 edition, California was commended for a good audit report. Kiwanis presented Hixson awards to Jeff Shackelford and Dr. Norman Rohrbach.

The public water district plans to construct a water tower.

Mid-Mo Ambulance District swore in Becky Holloway to replace a board member who moved out of the district. Aaron Nichols was hired as a police officer by the City of California.

A sidewalk project is underway in Russellville. The Moniteau Christian Ministries Center (MCMC) planned a fundraiser dinner in Tipton.

A trapping clinic was held at Orscheln Farm and Home in California. Experienced trapper Dale Vert and Conservation Agent Nathan Hodges went over different types and techniques of trapping, and the value of each. They also discussed the methods of trapping different species of game animals.

David Shaul, Jamestown, was promoted to Colonel in the Missouri National Guard.

Russellville's Railroad Park was dedicated.

The Moniteau County Farm Bureau annual dinner meeting was featured at the top of the front page of the Oct. 23 issue. Guest speaker was Mike Deering, executive vice president of the Missouri Cattlemen's Association. William Inglish, Missouri Farm Bureau Ambassador, also spoke. Holly Eschenbrenner, Jamestown, presented the talk she plans to give as a candidate for Missouri Farm Bureau Ambassador for next year.

The Moniteau County 4-H Council Recognition Day was reported. New Beginnings Family Worship Center hosted a fall harvest festival at Proctor Park.

The California School Board heard a report presented by the counselors on their activities, saying, "It's not just counseling and not just guidance."

Jamestown was the location of the CCAA Choral Clinic. The director was Jazzmond Rucker, Battle High School, Columbia.

High Point eight-year-old Billi Galliher competed in barrel racing at the American Royal Youth Invitational Rodeo, Kansas City.

At the Cole County R-I School, Russellville, teachers are working iPads into lessons.

The Tipton R-VI School District approved moving the softball season to spring starting in 2015 to better match other area schools seasons.

On the crime side, a felony domestic assault charge was filed. Another person was charged with a felony for having altered or missing identification on equipment.

In the Oct. 30 edition, readers were reminded of the end of Daylight Saving Time on the next Sunday. A recommendation was to change batteries in smoke and carbon monoxide detectors.

Former U.S. Congressman Ike Skelton died at 81.

Gas price dropped below $3 a gallon.

Bunceton was the location of the CCAA Band Clinic. The high school director was Dr. Brian Silvey, University of Missouri - Columbia. The junior high school director was Phil Wood, presently an instrumental teacher at Lincoln University, Jefferson City.

Felony charges filed included one for unlawful use of a weapon, and another person was charged with burglary.

Additions were made to the court docket by charges filed against one person for burglary and assault, another for unlawful use of a firearm, drug and firearm charges against another and against a fourth for felony driving while intoxicated.


Halloween events were featured in the Nov. 6 edition. Veterans Day observations were listed and closed governmental offices were mentioned. The California City Council discussed the bidding process.

In the Answer the Call section, upgrades and changes in services provided by 911, sheriff's department, city police, city and rural fire and the ambulance district were reported.

The story and photos at the top of the Nov. 13 front page was of local quilters presenting quilts to veterans. At the bottom of the page was the combined California high and middle school Veterans Day assembly. Veteran Mark Miller spoke and three winning Kiwanis essays were read.

Mike Nichols, who served eight years with the Missouri National Guard, spoke at the Cole County R-I, Russellville, Veterans Day event. Other Veterans Day events appearing in the paper included those of Jamestown, Clarksburg, Latham and High Point.

A Chamber of Commerce ribbon-cutting was held for Inspired Designs, a new business on Oak Street, California.

More than 20 people appeared at a Listening Post for Rep. Vicky Hartsler to speak to her representative, Austin Kramer.

Scott Justin Mitchell received approval for an Eagle Scout Project.

Jamestown Rural Fire received a grant from MFA.

The CHS Choral Department presented a stage production of "Grease."

The lead items of the Nov. 20 issue of the California Democrat were veterans being honored at VFW Post 4345, the Chamber of Commerce report that more helpers are needed for the Ozark Ham and Turkey Festival, and that the season for Christmas parades close at hand.

The Prairie Home Veterans Day program was reported. California Mayor Norris Gerhart signed a proclamation for American Education Week. Tipton announced high attendance at the parent-teacher conference.

The tragic death of Chad Stover, a Tipton High School junior, after he collapsed during a football game in Sedalia, drew the communities of the area together. A vigil was held in Tipton on Nov. 14.

California Elementary Principal Daniel Williams read books to the students from the roof of the building on a very cold day as part of Pizza Hut Book-It challenge.

Flag Spring Baptist Church dedicated its new building Sunday, Nov. 17. The 1879 building was destroyed by fire Nov. 12, 2012. With help of many volunteers, and God, the church is now in a new building.

The Moniteau County Historical Society hosted its annual dinner.

In the Nov. 27 issue, the California FFA Royal Court was pictured. The "Fill a Ford for the Holidays" by Sakelaris Ford was reported to collect donations for area food pantries.

A California man was injured in Fulton when the sides of a ditch caved in. He is recovering.

California Mayor Norris Gerhart received an award from Mid-Missouri Regional Planning Commission for "making California a better place."

Retired teachers honored veterans. David Campbell earned a second degree black belt in TaeKwonDo.


At the top of the Dec. 4 issue was the story of the Thanksgiving dinner at the California Nutrition Center. A California City Council story informed the readers that dogs and fences are a hindrance to meter readers. A residential demolition project is underway, with asbestos mitigation being done first. The new Putnam Chevrolet location south of California along Highway 87 is taking shape. Leepers Auto Service is getting a facelift.

CPI changed its regular meeting time to the third Thursday of the month at noon.

The visit of Missouri University System President Tim Wolfe to California was reported in the Dec. 11 issue. He spoke to the students at the California Middle School about the importance of education. Later he spoke to several local leaders. New CPI board members were elected at the annual CPI dinner meeting.

California held its Christmas parade. Although the extreme cold caused cancellation of the Jamestown parade, the town was still visited by Santa and an elf. Many of the local businesses held a Christmas open house.

Cole County R-I elementary students had a Christmas program. Jamestown Eager Eagles held their monthly club meeting collecting toys for "Toys for Tots."

Dec. 18, the Chamber of Commerce decorating contest winners were announced. House decorating winners were, first place, Ron and Gloria Albin, California; second place, Joe and Dena Blakely, Kliever area; and third place, Debbie Ferguson, California. The business first place winner was Inspired Designs, California.

The Prairie Home Christmas Festival was held amidst snow. California employees were served Christmas dinner in the city hall building.

Mid-Mo Ambulance District ordered a new ambulance to be delivered by May. The California Area Chamber of Commerce approved holding the Ozark Ham and Turkey Festival for next year.

Because of the weather, several vehicles rolled over and collided. Several people were injured and vehicles totaled.

California High School Choral held its Christmas Concert. The Middle School presented a Winter Memories Concert. The Russellville Indian Singers held a Christmas carol tour. High Point R-III presented a musical "A Simple Christmas."

The top item of the Dec. 25 issue was a photo of the family of the first baby of 2013, Rylee Michelle Porter. The article included the announcement of the 2014 First Baby Contest.

In other news, the fifth graders present more than $3,000 to Kiwanis of the "Circle of Sharing" fundraiser. there was a Christmas program at Aurora Montessori. The Prairie Home first and second grade students presented a "The Toys That Had to Wait!" Christmas Concert. Jamestown and Prairie Home both had Christmas concerts.

The California School Board discussed the bond proposal to be put before the voters at the April election.

A holiday music concert was held at Cole R-I School. Nicholas Burgher, California, sang at the Southwest Baptist University graduation. He is a commercial art and general music graduate of SBU.

The year of 2013 is at an end. There are another 12 months of issues of the California Democrat now in the archives for future generations to look through and see what went on in the community.

Happy New Year!