27 July 2015

Saturday's Stop Madrona Shindig a Shining Success

Saturday evening's wine tasting fundraiser by Hills for Everyone for its lawsuit to stop the Madrona housing project on the Brea portion of Carbon Canyon was a fun and successful evening for about fifty to sixty persons.

Held at the Oak Tree Downs home of Don and Suzanne Hodson in the Chino Hills section of the canyon, the event featured a silent auction for such offerings as stays at Big Bear and Catalina Island, a remarkable original painting by Chino Hills resident Dawn Secord, and a day of sailing, as well as the tasting, in which several wines from Ascension Cellars, based in Paso Robles and co-owned by Eric Allen, an Olinda Village resident.

The latter paired hors d'oeuvres, prepared and served by Hills for Everyone members and Carbon Canyon residents, with several wines from Ascension, including Rhone and Bordeaux-style offerings such as rosé, viognier, a GSM (grenache, syrah and mourvédre), a proprietary Bordeaux-style blend aptly called the "Soul Shaker", and a port.  Allen provided interesting introductions for his wines and mistress of ceremonies, HFE board member and ex-Brea council member Bev Perry kept the evening moving.

Perry presented a list of six notable achievements of Hills for Everyone over the decades, including the creation of Chino Hills State Park, saving land in the Puente Hills for open space and recreation, preventing housing projects in other hills locations, and working to develop a crucial wildlife corridor under the 91 Freeway between the Chino Hills and the Santa Ana Mountains.

It was a night of fine wine, fun conversation, excellent food, and a beautiful setting in the hills above Carbon Canyon.  As the lawsuit on Madrona goes to trial for opening arguments at the end of August, let's hope a goodly amount of money was raised for this worthy cause.

14 July 2015

Hills for Everyone Stop Madrona Winetasting Fundraiser

As part of its continuing efforts to halt the 162-unit Madrona housing project, approved last summer for 367 acres on the north side of Carbon Canyon between Olinda Village and the county line in Brea, Hills for Everyone, which has spearheaded the movement, is hosting a winetasting fundraiser.

The event is being held on Saturday, 25 July from 5:00-8:30 p.m. at the home of Don and Suzanne Hodson in the Oak Tree Downs community in the Chino Hills section of Carbon Canyon.  Ascension Cellars of Paso Robles will be there to pour wine and guests can also purchase from Ascension at the event.

In fact, here's an excellent description of the event from Eric Johnson, Olinda Village resident and a key player in the fight against Madrona:
Ascension Cellars (of Paso Robles) will pour a variety of wines, which will be paired with carefully selected foods.  Sit back, relax, and enjoy the oak dotted hillsides, the fabulous wine, and the great company.  Be sure to bring your wallet as there will be a small silent auction and an opportunity to buy the wine directly from Ascension Cellars.
Tickets are $50 per person or $80 per couple through this Saturday the 18th.  After that date, prices increase to $70 per person or $100 per couple.

Paid reservations are required, so to order online using PayPal, please click here.   Instructions for paying by check are also available through the link, which provides background, as well, on Ascension Cellars.

Once tickets are ordered, an e-mail will provide all the information needed to get to the event.

The lawsuit filed by Hills for Everyone, the California Native Plant Society, the Sierra Club, and the Friends of Harbors, Beaches and Parks, is now in process at Orange County Superior Court and the fundraiser will help provide support for that effort.

12 July 2015

On the Skids in Carbon Canyon #17979

This happened last night, probably late, and is located eastbound on Carbon Canyon Road, just a hop, skip and a crash from the Brea/Chino Hills border.

The vehicle does not appear to have slowed until after maiming the guardrail, because deep, heavily curved skid marks after visible beyond the point of impact.  Good thing someone wasn't coming the other way, because this looks like it easily could have been a nasty head-on collision.

Incidentally, the City of Chino Hills and the Chino Hills Police [Sheriff's] Department held a public safety forum three nights ago and Captain Robert Guillen spoke about all kinds of issues related to policing in the city.

He briefly made reference to Carbon Canyon Road, indicating that contact with the City of Brea, the use [briefly, it should be added] of electronic message boards and more patrolling were implemented.  He repeated something he has said to individuals and groups, which is that the analytics show an average of about 2.3 accidents per month in 2015 so far compared to an average of 2.5 in the preceding five years (2010-14.)

Analytics and metrics are the rage everywhere, from the corporate world to the sports world and, evidently, to the law enforcement world.  Quantification has a place.

But, there's also there matter of qualification; that is, the quality of the data and the quality of the environment.

So, 2.3 accidents per month on Carbon Canyon Road is not qualitatively the same as 2.3 accidents per month on Grand Avenue, Peyton Drive or Chino Hills Parkway, to use some examples.  Those are multi-lane roads, they go through more heavily poulated areas, they are generally straighter, and they are better lit.  Adventurous drivers are less likely to take to those thoroughfares to test their cars, for example.

Carbon Canyon Road, however, is different.  It is a two-lane highway, heavily curved, poorly lit for most sections and does not go through as many populated areas, especially on the Brea portion.  A certain type of accident on Carbon Canyon could cause a full road closure, but not on a multi-lane roadway.

In fact, it is hard to imagine that any of the aforementioned streets, or any other, for that matter, in Chino Hills has had as many complete road closures as Carbon Canyon Road.  The accident metric might show similar numbers per month, but the kinds of incidents can vary dramatically.

A fender-bender and a fatality won't be distinguished on the basic metric, at least as publicly presented so far..

Neither will unreported accidents or near accidents, which almost certainly dwarf the 2.3 accidents per month figure used by local law enforcement.  A figure that was also put in context by stating that most accidents happen during high-volume use (morning and evening commute times).

That may be, but those incidents will almost always be less serious than the one noted above, or the full closure last weekend, or the dozens and dozens detailed on this blog over the last seven years.

The quality of the accidents has to be measured with the quantity of them.

Racing through Carbon Canyon is a consistent and near-nightly phenomenon.  It can be heard through the window behind this computer from a room looking right over the highway.  Where, by the way, a car went off the side of the road last weekend.

So, again, using statistics as part of an analysis of conditions has a place, but, so far, it appears this has been the only criteria used to judge what response there should be from law enforcement.

Granted, policing resources are needed in a variety of ways throughout the two cities and no one should expect regular patrolling of the canyon by police in Brea or Chino Hills.

However, electronic message boards are only fancier versions of metal signs and have limited effect.  Patrolling has, it appears, only been ramped up during daylight hours on weekdays.

But, most major accidents, like last night's and the road closure last weekend, are happening during late evening/early morning hours on weekends.

This has been conveyed to Capt. Guillen and others of his staff.

Accidents are continuing--at least three in the last week as noted on this blog.  Signs need to be part of the mix, but so does patrolling during those times when most accidents take place.

10 July 2015

Stone's Smokehouse in Carbon Canyon Opens Tonight!

Stone's Smokehouse in the Olinda Village Shopping Center is open for business as of tonight.  The restaurant occupies the space most recently known as Sol de Mexico, as well as an adjacent unit that was last a church.  The enterprise has a full bar as well as the dining area and there was a special advance event for Carbon Canyon residents last night to introduce the place.

Here is a comment left by an Olinda Village resident on the post from a couple of months back announcing the imminent opening of the restaurant.  It says it all, so here it is:

Stone's Smokehouse is opening tomorrow night, July 10.

The private opening for Carbon Canyon residents tonight was a huge success with just about everyone in Olinda Village showing up. It was jam packed from 6pm to 9pm and a good time was had by all. 

Even the guys from Brea Fire Station 4 stopped by and gave the kids a tour of their truck and passed out fire hats and left with lights on and siren blaring. 

The food was great and the owners, Tory and Marcela Stone are the nicest people in the world. The staff worked hard serving wall to wall people and had nothing but smiles and a friendly attitude.

We are so happy to have a local place to grab a burger and fries or some nice BBQ and wash it down with a cold beer or glass of wine in the company of friends.

Check it out and welcome the Stones to Carbon Canyon.
Best of luck to Tony and Marcela Stone as they launch their new venture and readers should feel free to leave comments on the restaurant, which can be passed on the Stones.

04 July 2015

Carbon Canyon Road Closed

A Brea police officer is parked on Carbon Canyon Road at Rosemary Lane, letting vehicles heading eastbound know that the road is closed just a little further eastward because of an accident.

All that is known right now is that the state highway is fully closed.  Evidently, a tow truck is on scene to remove a vehicle involved in the accident.

There was nothing said about an estimated reopening.

After a lull of weeks without any major incidents, we've had two in less than twenty-four hours right here in Sleepy Hollow.

03 July 2015

On the Skids in Carbon Canyon #17842

UPDATE, 7:53 a.m.:  The car is towed away and the road now fully reopened.

It'd been awhile, but about a half-hour or so ago, a car heading westbound on Carbon Canyon Road skidded off the roadway and slid off the embankment heading down towards Carbon [Canyon] Creek.

The vehicle is just now being pulled out and towed away and is literally across the street from where this post is being typed.

The westbound side of the highway has been closed for a spell, though vehicles heading east have been allowed to go through the entire time, while westbound traffic is proceeding at intervals.

01 July 2015

Carbon Canyon Chronicle Contraction

It has been seven years since the Carbon Canyon Chronicle meekly, tentatively and hesitantly made its way into the blogosphere and, nearly 850 posts later, it's become something much, much, much bigger than could have been envisioned upon launch in June 2008.

Now, it's time for a heads-up.  Simply put, the Chronicle is going to be entering a phase of contraction.  The reasons are several and would involve more explanation than is necessary, other than to say that there will definitely be fewer posts and those that do appear will mostly be shorter and more concise.

A major reason involves a contract just signed for a book on crime and justice in nineteenth-century Los Angeles, which has been in the works (or, frequently, dormant) since 1997.  At nearly twenty years, it just has to get done.  Hopefully, it will make its appearance sometime next year.

As for this blog, the intention is for occasional offerings providing the usual heady mix of canyon news, history, and appreciation--just not as frequently or as detailed.  What is unknown is just exactly what that means in terms of quantity and content.  We'll just have to see.

For all of you supporters, including the 39 identified followers of the blog, as well as the many others who don't formally follow but definitely check in regularly, what else can be said, but--thank you, thank you, and thank you for all of the views, comments and other ways of demonstrating your interest!  The best part about doing this is really the reactions from those who've come forward on the blog or in person.

So, bottom line:  the Chronicle will continue, but just in a more limited way, so keep checking in from time-to-time.  Your interest and support are greatly appreciated!