Here is Why the Power Was Out in EastHum Today

Andrew Goff / Tuesday, March 28 @ 4:15 p.m. / LoCO Looks Up

If you are one of those folks that checks LoCO’s Outages page several times a day (and who isn’t?!) you may have noticed that power has been out from Hoopa to Orleans for a good chunk of the day. 


We got an answer as to why that was from PG&E’s Deanna Contreras. Over the weekend, she tells us, a landslide along Highway 96 took out a tree which damaged a 12kv power line. The line spanned across the Trinity River. Not good. 

So! Today PG&E’s emergency crews “de-energized” approximately 900 customers so that a helicopter could realign the wires over the river. According to Contreras, as of this posting, all power should be restored. 

“It’s an important reminder that if you see a low hanging or downed power line, stay away, assume it’s energized and extremely dangerous and call 911,” Contreras writes. “And then call PG&E.”

And now you know! 


(PHOTO) Thanks For This

Andrew Goff / Tuesday, March 28 @ 1:25 p.m. / :)

To the spider-like individual who decided the plaza surrounding the Old Town Gazebo needed a minor lacy facelift, LoCO says thanks. We don’t claim to speak for everyone, of course, but this struck us as a positive overnight addition — not everything we find on our doorstep in the mornings is pretty. This was curious in a good way. 

Cheers, mystery doily artist. Long may you guerrilla crochet.

(VIDEO) REDWOOD ACRES: Eureka’s Fairgrounds, Now One of the Most Innovative Business Incubators in the County, Makes Space for a Fleet of Food Trucks

Sierra Jenkins / Tuesday, March 28 @ 8:11 a.m. / LoCO Video Reports

Click video to play. Problems on iPhone? Turn your phone sideways.

Over the past five years Redwood Acres in Eureka has had to find innovative ways to pay the bills after losing state fair funding. Now the fairgrounds is not only a great place for small businesses, it’s going to be home to food trucks.

Redwood Acres has been around since the 1930s and see all sorts of action, from being an agricultural facility to a horse track. But its executive director, Cindy Bedingfield, has endured some of the more difficult times.

“Redwood Acres was struggling horribly when we lost our state funding,” she says. “We get $40,000 now from the state and that doesn’t even cover admin costs let alone maintenance or infrastructure to our grounds. We were holding 700 events and still could not even begin to pay all of our expenses.”

However Redwood Acres has bounced back in a big way, proving that despite adversity it can be self-sustaining and a source of economic development. It now has more than 830 events per year, plus serves as an RV park, emergency evacuation location, and a business incubator — currently accommodating 15 business.

However, the business model continues to evolve, and Bedingfield aims to make every inch of the fairgrounds more profitable.

For example, the concession stand located in the grandstands is typically used during auto races, thus only bringing in revenue 12 to 14 days a year. Now it’s now being remodeled to serve as a commissary for food trucks and provide additional kitchen space to other entrepreneurs.

By law food trucks are required to report to a commissary; which should provide a commercial kitchen for food prep, a grease and graywater dump and truck storage. The Eureka City Council approved a mobile vending ordinance last July but currently there’s not a fully compliant food commissary for trucks in Humboldt County.

Plus, Eureka is lacking affordable community commercial kitchens in general, so the concession stand revamp will fill many voids.

“I think it’s going to work out really good,” said Bedingfield. “A little juggling with the concession stand, but we’re used to juggling out here.”

In this LoCO Video Report we hear more about the “incubating businesses” and get to check out the concession stand overhaul.

Stay tuned — we’ll next find out about ideas to accommodate more businesses wanting to get their foot in the door, and see what’s going on inside the former Arts & Crafts building.

OBITUARY: Sunni Jo Grant, 1979-2017

LoCO Staff / Tuesday, March 28 @ 6:45 a.m. / Obits

Sunni Jo Grant, was born May 27th, 1979, in Hoopa. she passed away suddenly March 20th, 2017, in Klamath at the age of 37.

Sunni spent the majority of her life in Eureka with her family and friends. She was very loved by everyone and will be missed by all.

Sunni’s greatest joy and best times in her life were spent with her son, little Justin, who everyone calls “Gooey.” She was a proud mom and dedicated all her time to her son and watching over her granny.

Sunni was full of life, always cracking jokes. Her smile will always be remembered. She was a bright, beautiful soul, “the life of the party,” always fun to be around. It could be said “she was larger than life,” leaving so many cherished memories with family and friends.

Sunni is survived by her loving husband Justin and their son Justin “Gooey” Cushman. By her grandmother Judith Grant, grandfather Hugh Grant Jr. Her brother Tyrel “Fatman” Grant, sisters Shana and Stormy Richards, cousins Michael, Paige, Tasha & Brother. As well as numerous Aunts, Uncles, and cousins. Sunni also leaves behind her cherished dog Cookie, whom she treated like her baby daughter.

Sunni was preceded in death by her son Isaac Cushman, mother Julie Grant, Aunt Darcy Grant, and uncle Itsy Grant.

Pallbearers; Justin Cushman Sr., Justin Cushman Jr., Tyrel “Fatman” Grant, Michael Grant, Natasha Evans, Dean “Brother” Grant, Paige McGee, Shana Richards, Stormy Richards, Cindy Green, Jessica Eleck, and James Spears. Honorary Pallbearers; Joe Grant, Hugh Grant Jr., Richard Green Sr., Ted Cushman, Tuffy Whipple, and Slim Whipple. The family would like to thank everyone for the support and donations during this time of sorrow. A go fund me account has been set up to contribute please go here. Services and viewing will be held at Sanders funeral home 1835 E St. Eureka CA, March 30th 2017. The viewing and visitation will be held from 10:00 am – 2:00pm. The services will begin at 2:00pm, Immediately following will be a potluck gathering to celebrate Sunni’s life at 415 5th St. Eureka CA.


The obituary above was submitted by Sunni’s family. The Lost Coast Outpost runs obituaries of Humboldt County residents at no charge. See guidelines here.

OBITUARY: Patricia Jabbour, 1952-2017

LoCO Staff / Tuesday, March 28 @ 6:45 a.m. / Obits


Patricia (“Pat”) Jabbour, known as “Nana” was gifted to this world on April 10, 1952 and passed on March 17, 2017. Pat was born to Norman John Sjoquist and Bertha Grace Sjoquist and helped raise, love and nurture 11 brothers and sisters. She married the love of her life, Paul Jabbour, on July 29, 1971 and had three children, Jonathan, Jeffrey and Jessica.

Pat lived a full life, knowing she was loved by many. Pat was a daughter, a wife, a mother, a sister, a nana, an aunt and a friend. She held these titles close to her heart and was committed and dedicated in every way, always putting others first. Pat’s legacy speaks to her pure and unconditional love for her family, those related by blood as well as those she adopted along the way, aka her “stray kids.” Pat was the rock of the Sjoquist and Jabbour families. Pat and Paul’s home was a “family hub” and many holiday meals and other events were enjoyed within those walls. Pat was known to be stubborn, direct, and somewhat salty, as her children would say, which only made her more genuine. You could always count on Pat to provide you with an honest answer, complete with a little sass and a smile. She was the giver of many kisses and hugs, always available when needed, and never gave up. Pat helped many family members, including her brothers and sisters, and her children, care for their babies and each other. She did everything from feeding family members countless grilled cheese sandwiches, to helping with homework, to reminding the younger ones (and occasionally the older ones) to turn their music down. She taught her family how to love and how to forgive and loved everyone for who they were made to be. Pat provided life lessons and many memories to those that knew her and we are so thankful that she was given to us for 64 years.

Although gone from this world. Pat’s love and memories will always remain with her loving husband, Paul Jabbour, and their three children and spouses, Jonathan, Jeffrey Jessica, Chandra and George; grandchildren, Damien, Katlyn, Tyler, Ethan, Tommy, Nya, Hynie; and great granddaughter Ilya.

Pat is remembered with love by her siblings: Dean Sjoquist, his wife Jan, and their two children Danny and Crystal; Karen Pino, and her two children, Jerab and Rhyan; Greg Sjoquist; Susan Minton, and her son, Colton; Lynn Patrick, and her sons Dusten, Travis and Garret; Drew Sjoquist, and his children, Nathan, Nick and Brigitte; Bobb Sjoquist, his wife Darcie, and their children Katie, Kristin, Kelli and Korey; Jimmie Sjoquist, and his children Makal, Anthony and Elizabeth; Chrissy Hunt, her husband Tom, and their children Brad, Kami and Tommy; Timmie Sjoquist; and Debbie Santos, her husband Mark, and sons Riley and Blake. She is loved and missed by many members of her family, including Jeanie Jabbour, her husband Eric, and children Nick and Stephan; Peter Jabbour, his wife Patty, and children Melissa, P.J., Josh and Kristen; Lisa, daughter of Mickey Jabbour, Jim Whistle and children of Kris Jabbour, Robbie, Michael, Ellen, Justin, and Ryan.

Pat is also loved, known and respected by numerous members of her family, including over 100 nieces, nephews, great nieces/nephews and other extended relatives. She is remembered by her classmates and friends from Cutten Elementary School, where she attended K-6th  grade, Winship Middle School and Eureka High School, graduating as part of the Class of 1970. She also enjoyed time with her sorority sisters within the Eureka Community and participating as a Community Campfire leader. She worked at Teacher’s Pet as a teacher, and most recently as a volunteer cook, and will be remembered lovingly and missed by all staff and students.

Pat is preceded in death by her loving parents, Norman and Bertha Sjoquist; her mother and father- in-law, Mickey and Alice Jabbour; brother-in- law Mickey Jabbour; sister-in- law Kris Jabbour; and her niece, Angeli, whom she loved.

Services will be held at the Church of the Latter-Day Saints (2806 Dolbeer Street, Eureka) on March 31, 2017 at 5:00 p.m. Many memories of Pat will be shared at the services and all that knew and loved her are invited to attend.


The obituary above was submitted by Pat’s family. The Lost Coast Outpost runs obituaries of Humboldt County residents at no charge. See guidelines here.

OBITUARY: Ron Samuelson, 1950-2017

LoCO Staff / Tuesday, March 28 @ 6:45 a.m. / Obits

On March 18, Dad was finally released from the prison of Alzheimer’s Disease to join his beloved wife Diane.

Ron Samuelson was born on Nov. 29, 1950 to Charles and Arlene Samuelson in Caldwell, Idaho. Shortly after his birth, the family made their way to Humboldt County, settling in Garberville, then Rio Dell. Ron spent his childhood hunting, fishing and swimming in the Eel River. His love for the outdoors remained with him throughout his life, and would eventually take him to the far corners of the globe. His hunting boots left their size 12 triple-A prints on the steppes of Mongolia, the mountains of Spain and Azerbaijan, the snow of the Yukon Territory, the Australian Outback and countless other places.

Dad was blessed by an immunity to poison oak, a gift that served him well for a life lived outdoors. He did, however, manage to get it one time as a boy. In the redwoods behind his Rio Dell home dad and his buddy Mark Siipola spent a day playing Tarzan on giant poison oak vines. They came home covered in black sap from head to toe. The next week wasn’t pretty.

Dad worked his first season for CDF in 1968. Hired by Harry Pritchard as a skinny 17-year-old kid barely out of high school, Dad would rise through the ranks to retire as a battalion chief nearly forty years later. Dad loved everything about fighting fires. He loved sleeping in the dirt, eating smoke and drinking warm water from the canteen on his belt. If the women in his life would have tolerated it he probably would not have worn anything but Nomex and White’s boots.

In 1972, Dad married into the Barnwell family, pioneers of Humboldt County. His marriage to Rindy would last for three decades, and would give him a son, Ryan, and two daughters, Robyn and Ren. In 1976, months before the birth of their first child, dad chose to set aside his position as a fire captain in Riverside and become a partner in Chalk Mountain Ranch. In choosing to raise his family in that rambling old house perched above the Van Duzen river valley, he gave us a childhood that was both beautiful and rare, filled with both hard work and exceptional freedom.

While dad put his blood and sweat into the ranch, his heart remained at the fire station. He might have told you that he went back to work for CDF because we needed the money. Cattle and timber prices at the time did make it hard to raise a ranch family, but the truth is he missed the smell of smoke and diesel, the long haul strike team drives, and the fellowship of his brothers and sisters in the fire service. In the early 80s he accepted a position as captain at the Bridgeville CDF station, a job he held for many years before moving on to other duties.

With summer consumed by fire, winter was when dad loved to play. He had a passion for skiing that started early. In high school he would find his way to horse mountain with his buddies Mark Siipola, Joe Flochini and Bill Christen. Rindy shared his love for skiing, and they spent many happy days on the mountain. Dad loved to watch his daughter Ren on a pair of skis. Fearless, she had no need to learn how to turn or slow down. A helmet soon became mandatory ski wear.

As the youngest of their children reached adulthood Ron and Rindy found that it was time to follow their own paths. While the divorce marked the end of one era of his life, it also signified the beginning of another. The last decade of Dad’s life was filled with adventure. His great friends Mark Megazzi and Kevin O’Neil hunted with him, skiied, golfed and fished in places most of us will never see.

Dad’s final years were also filled with unexpected love. It is hard to imagine a more unlikely match than Dad and Diane. First of all, she was a Democrat. On paper they were polar opposites, but in life they fit together perfectly. Generations of Ferndale kids remember her as their kindergarten teacher, Mrs. Cook. A woman of depth, kindness, creativity and perseverance, she had the ability to find joy in a life that presented more than its share of difficulty.

Diane brought an appreciation for music and art to Ron’s life that had been sorely lacking. While their years together were short, they were filled with travel, family and laughter. Kauai held a special place in their hearts, and they returned there as often as they were able.

Diane was a blessing not just to Ron, but to the rest of his family as well. Without hesitation she embraced his children and grandchildren as her own. The warmth of her kindness and love enriched the lives of every member of the blended family she created with Ron.

Cancer stole Diane away from Ron on the 31st of January, 2016. With her death Ron began the final chapter of his life. He spent his last year in his own home, surrounded by family. He died peacefully under his own roof, in a room filled with pictures and memories of his extraordinary life.

Even as he lost his own powers of speech he loved to be in the center of a crowded kitchen filled with teenagers, dogs and toddlers. As his Alzheimer’s progressed there were fewer and fewer things that could make Dad smile. Always with a special place in his heart for babies, the sight of his infant granddaughter Riot or his little grandson Otto never failed to make him grin. He also had a special relationship with a yellow lab named Louise who still can’t figure out where grandpa went, and tried to bite the man who came to pick up his empty hospital bed.

Ron was preceded in death by his older brother Craig, his parents Charles and Arlene, and his wife Diane. He is survived by his ex-wife Rindy, his sister Linda, his son Ryan and wife Robbin, daughter Robyn and partner Wade, daughter Ren and husband Kris, stepson Kai and partner Lauren, and stepdaughter Kalista and husband Gregg. He also leaves behind his grandchildren Riot, Philo, Geneva, Alex, Brittaney, Brandy (Nat), Gloria, Sage, Peyton, Taryn, Otto, Nathan, Ethan and Sienna, as well as numerous nieces and nephews.

Ron’s family would also like to extend their gratitude to Yvonne for her exceptional care and service during his final year. You didn’t just care for Dad, you cared for all of us, and we are forever in your debt.

A celebration of Ron’s life will be held on Friday, April 7 at 2 p.m. at the Fortuna Volunteer Fire Department. Members of the fire service, EMS and law enforcement are welcome to attend in uniform. In lieu of cards or flowers the family requests that donations in Ron’s name be made to local volunteer fire departments or the CalFire Honor Guard.


The obituary above was submitted by Ron Samuelson’s family. The Lost Coast Outpost runs obituaries of Humboldt County residents at no charge. See guidelines here.

Major Development Project for Southern Humboldt Community Park Comes Before Supervisors Tuesday

Ryan Burns / Monday, March 27 @ 3:56 p.m. / Community , Government

A view of the park property from Hwy. 101, half a mile south of Garberville. The arrow shows the proposed location for new recreation facilities. | Photo courtesy County of Humboldt.

On Tuesday the Humboldt County Board of Supervisors will consider an ambitious development project years in the planning for the Southern Humboldt Community Park. If approved the project would greatly expand the recreation facilities on the property’s 400-plus acres. Plans include festival event stages, a community forest, agricultural lands and a sports complex complete with baseball diamonds, a football/soccer field, a dog park and a skatepark.

But while proponents have been working toward this goal since the turn of the century, critics worry about the potential environmental impacts on the adjacent South Fork Eel River, the proposed conversion of agricultural lands and the safety of pedestrians and cyclists going to and from events, among other things.

County staff summed up the situation in its report for Tuesday’s meeting: “This is a large, complicated and controversial project with many pieces.”

The riverfront property, located between Garberville and Benbow, is currently owned and managed by a nonprofit, which (somewhat confusingly) also goes by the name Southern Humboldt Community Park. In order to see the park vision come to fruition the nonprofit needs to clear a series of government hurdles, most of them lined up for Tuesday’s meeting.

For one thing it needs the project’s environmental impact report (EIR) to be certified. According to the report, a series of mitigation efforts will serve to reduce the project’s environmental impacts below significant levels, with one exception: In order to build the ballfields developers will have to convert roughly 16 acres of existing farmland, resulting in a serious and unavoidable impact. Therefore, in order for the project to move forward, supervisors must sign a Statement of Overriding Consideration justifying their approval.

And what is the justification for this park? From the staff report:

Justification for the project is based on the facts that the Garberville and Redway areas have a limited supply of available park facilities in close proximity, and do not have any land zoned to allow the development of a multi-use community park. Since much of the flat land in proximity to population centers was historically, and is currently, used for agricultural, commercial and residential development, the few public areas that are in these vicinities have become overused. The proposed project would help the community meet its demand for public recreational space.

Assuming the board agrees, that’s just one hurdle. Supervisors are also being asked to approve a general plan amendment changing the land use designation on all 405 acres to public recreation (it’s currently a mix of industrial, agricultural and resource-related) and amend the county’s zoning ordinance to accommodate a public facility.

If they do so, the property could immediately be used for everything from weddings to Easter egg hunts, mountain bike races and nature hikes. Group camping would be available at a designated site and sports could be played on the ballfields — once they’re built. People would be allowed to continue using the park’s open pasturelands for agriculture as well as the existing playground at Tooby Memorial Park. And the new zoning would allow folks to sell farm, food and nursery products as long as it’s done “within a building equivalent to a roadside stand.”

Project proponents have even bigger plans, including hosting the kind of large-scale, multi-day festivals SoHum specializes in. In order for that to happen the park will require a conditional use permit allowing medium-sized events, which are defined as having between 800-2,500 attendees, and large events, with up to 5,000 people per day “including three stages, areas for artisans and vendor sales and on-site educational workshops.” 

A schematic drawing of the proposed recreation area with multi-use fields, a dog park, skatepark and gravel access roads and parking areas. | County of Humboldt.

The county’s planning commission unanimously approved the project back in January, though it rejected an “environmentally superior” option recommended by staff. That option would have retained an additional 17 acres of farmland under Agriculture Exclusive zoning. The supervisors will have the option of following the planning commission’s lead or going with the staff recommendation.

Dozens of locals signed a form letter of support and sent it in to county supervisors. (See close to 100 of those letters in pdf form here.) Many more have spoken in support of the project at public hearings.

But critics have voiced their opinions, too. Many of their views can be seen in the public comments captured in the final environmental impact report. Neighbors worry about the impacts of large festival crowds. Others expressed concern about South Fork Eel River water being used for irrigation, impacts to wildlife and habitat, possible herbicide usage, increased traffic and other issues. (You can read staff responses to those concerns by clicking the link above.)

Again, the Board of Supervisors will consider whether to approve or deny this project at Tuesday’s meeting, which takes place in supervisors’ chambers at the county courthouse. The meeting starts at 9 a.m.

Click here to enlarge the image.