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December 10, 2019
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About Town, Week of Nov. 11

November 14, 2019

Tarmo Hannula: I stopped by Freedom Meat Lockers in Watsonville Wednesday and the place was abuzz with customers stacking up their Thanksgiving meal orders, among other things. Manager Will Panis said now is the time to get orders in as things are piling up. Besides smoked brine and fresh turkeys, their house specialties include smoked hams, which were once voted “Best in the Nation,” and 15 times voted “Best in State,” owner Howard Walker said.

“And what’s really popular is our brine turkey. The flavor and juices are just incredible with the brine,” he said.

Among a wealth of meats and dozens of house-made sausages, the business also carries several kinds of jerky, barbecue bacon, pepperoni snack sticks and a prime rib that is cut, tied and seasoned and comes with cooking instructions. For information call 724-4355. They’re located at 160 Hi Grade Lane off of Green Valley Road.

A crew has been busy decorating Watsonville Plaza with all kinds of Christmas gear, from strands of colorful lights to giant candy canes, wreaths and a 30-foot blue spruce tree laced with ornaments and lights as the plaza’s central holiday attraction. At one point on Thursday a woman walked her dog past the action and told me: “I sure hope people stop to thank them for all the work they do. They not only do a beautiful job every year, they tidy the whole plaza up afterwards. It’s a lot of work. I thank them every year.”

The Korean automaker Hyundai has announced their latest model that will be named the Santa Cruz. Hyundai said the production of the compact pickup will begin in Alabama in 2021.

The long-running black and white original TV series “The Twilight Zone” has hit its 60th anniversary. The show was a staple in my family’s home. Eerie, unique, full of blunt surprises, thought-evoking, and chillingly strange at times, the psychological thriller ran from 1959-1964. Almost every adult I know has at least one favorite episode and nearly everyone can somewhat imitate the bizarre and grating theme song, “de-de DE-de” without a second thought.

One of my favorites starred Agnes Moorehead, it was called “The Invaders.” Moorehead played an aging woman living alone in a rustic cabin. Shabbily dressed, with no modern conveniences, one day she hears a crash on her roof. She is then accosted by tiny robot intruders that emerged from a miniature flying saucer that crashed into her home. A bizarre fight erupts between them where they cave holes in her floorboards and slash her ankles with tiny sharp blades, among other things. She eventually gets fed up, rushes onto her roof and hacks the saucer apart with an axe, only then to discover its insignia: U.S. Air Force.

A man was killed when an Amtrak train collided with his work truck in Castroville Wednesday at 6:50 p.m. The train, headed north to Seattle, hit the toilet maintenance truck, killing the driver near Rodgers Road and Highway 183, according to the Monterey County Sheriff’s Office. About 169 passengers were onboard the train. The crash spilled around 750 gallons of sewage in the area so emergency workers deemed it a hazardous materials incident. 

There was a major three-vehicle crash on the 1100 bock of Freedom Blvd. this morning. Two people were seriously hurt, including one who was trapped for a short while. Watsonville Fire and Police encircled the incident and shut off traffic on Freedom Blvd. between 6:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. A man was attempting a U-turn when an SUV plowed into him. That SUV then slammed into a parked Honda Civic with a man and woman aboard. They were the injured parties. All others escaped injuries, said Watsonville Police Sgt. Donny Thul.

Quote of the day: “Because in the end, you won’t remember the time you spent working in the office or mowing your lawn. Climb that goddamn mountain.” — Jack Kerouac.

November 11, 2019

Johanna Miller: Happy Veteran’s Day! Today we honor those who have served in the U.S. Armed Forces. I hope everyone who has the day off of work and school are having an enjoyable holiday.

After work on Sunday I stopped by Fruition Brewing in the East Lake Shopping Center to grab a couple of beers with my friend. Tortas Al 100 was on the scene serving up a menu of torta creations. I tried “El Americano,” with grilled chicken, bacon, melted Monterey Jack, avocado, onions, veggies, ranch and garlic herb butter on delicious Telera bread. 

I recommend checking out the food truck wherever they stop by next. Follow them online on Facebook and Instagram.

“El Americano” was one of many tortas offered by Torta Al 100 on Sunday at Fruition Brewing. —Johanna Miller/The Pajaronian

Local artist Paul DeWorken will host a special Paint Night for Adults this Wednesday at the Watsonville Public Library, 275 Main St., Suite 100. Come learn painting techniques with DeWorken, who is known for his many mural project across the city as well as his signature “The Ville” design. All materials will be provided.

Watsonville Wetland Watch will present “The Secret Lives of Snowies” Wednesday from 6:30-8:30 p.m. at the Patrick J. Fitz Wetlands Education Resource Center, 500 Hawkins Slough Road. Learn about the snowy plover, a federally-protected shorebird which nests on sandy beach from Baja to southern Washington State. Point Blue Conservation Science Senior Ecologist Kriss Neuman will speak. Admission is free, but space is limited. Visit to reserve your spot.

Today NASA shared an incredible image of Planet Mercury passing across the face of the Sun. The silhouette of the small planet is shown in stark contrast of the bright orange surface of our star. 

According to BBC News, this type of transit will not happen again until 2032. The event was visible from the eastern U.S. and Canada, Central and South America, and parts of Greenland, the Caribbean and West Africa.

This still image from a video shared by NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory shows Mercury as it passes between Earth and the sun.

Applications are now being accepted for Soroptimist’s “Live Your Dream: Education and Training Awards for Women.” Women with primary financial responsibility for themselves and/or dependents, who are attending an undergraduate degree or vocational skills training program and have financial need may apply. The deadline is Friday.

Quote of the day: “We read books to find out who we are. What other people, real or imaginary, do and think and feel… is an essential guide to our understanding of who we are and may become.” ― Ursula K. LeGuin


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