Find the Good and Praise It

Local coverage celebrates the best of our neighborhoods

By Cecily Hastings

This month, join me in celebrating—and I mean celebrating—getting our print editions out and into your mailboxes. Due to the coronavirus pandemic, many of our loyal small business advertisers had to skip a month.

Given that more than 1,000 local publications across the nation have faced cutbacks, we are very grateful to be able to continue delivering vital local news to our readers this month.

For May, we decided to publish as much positive local news as possible. As a result, our regular story lineup is modified. The following articles are a compilation of news written by me, our editor Cathryn Rakich and writer Jessica Laskey.

Additionally, it is vital that our readers sign up for our e-newsletter so we can deliver extra local coverage to your inbox every week. To sign up, please visit insidesacramento.com/shop.

Our ability to deliver in print could still be in jeopardy if the business shutdown stays in place longer than anticipated.

Please consider becoming a member of Inside Sacramento. Your support helps us bring you high-quality local news by some of the best writers in our area. Our four neighborhood print editions reach more than 80,000 Sacramentans each month—free of charge. To support our news coverage, please visit insidesacramento.com/shop/membership.

Plus, this month we added a crossword puzzle similar to what is published in The Sacramento Bee. If you sign up for our e-newsletter, we’ll email you another new puzzle every week to download and print at home.

Be good, do good, and be sure to find the good and praise it!

CAFFEINE COMFORT

With health care workers in our neighborhood hospitals taking on more frequent and longer shifts, fresh hot coffee is in high demand. Two local business owners have stepped up with generous hearts to put their best cup forward.

Sean Kohmescher, CEO of Temple Coffee, had the unfortunate experience of opening his new East Sac location at 43rd and H streets in mid-March—just as the COVID-19 shutdown was ordered. Staff kicked into high gear and cleared out the wooden chairs from around the 25-foot-long center table and quickly converted to a strictly carryout operation.

When Inside Sacramento developed its Take the 100% Local Pledge campaign, Kohmescher immediately reached out to help. Together they filmed a Good Day Sacramento television spot March 26 in his new shop.

Following the campaign kick-off, Kohmescher wanted to help the workers he saw streaming in and out of Mercy General Hospital just a few blocks away. One hundred $5 gift cards were delivered April 2 to the appreciative hospital leadership, with an additional 50 cards planned for the following month.

“Temple Coffee is a great new neighbor and we all appreciate their generosity,” hospital President Edmundo Castañeda says.

Edie Baker, owner of Chocolate Fish Coffee Roasters, took another approach to help hospital workers. Baker, a former nurse, set up an online donation program where folks can pay it forward to help deliver fresh coffee to area hospital workers.

Baker has delivered gallons of coffee to Mercy General Hospital, UC Davis Medical Center, Shriners Hospitals for Children, and Kaiser South Sacramento and Morse Avenue medical centers. She’ll continue as long as donations come in.

“People are so grateful for our health care heroes,” Baker says. “It’s important they know we have their backs.”

Chocolate Fish closed its Downtown location when nearby state offices shut down, but quickly converted its East Sac and Land Park locations to carry-out only.

For more information, visit chocolatefishcoffee.com and templecoffee.com.

3 BLACK CHEFS

Three local chefs have come together to cook and distribute free to-go plates in the Meadowview neighborhood during the COVID-19 health crisis. Under the name 3 Black Chefs, Willis Webster, Mike Harris and Berry Accius are feeding neighbors in need every Thursday and Friday at the Pannell Meadowview Community Center.

Their ultimate mission: “To help combat food insecurity during the COVID-19 stay-at-home order, as well as make a meaningful difference in the lives of those not just in the Meadowview community, but surrounding communities as well,” Webster says.

The trio prepares the meals at Fresher, a Sacramento nonprofit that provides healthy, affordable meals to underserved communities. Plates are wrapped up at the Fresher facility and given out to-go at Pannell Meadowview Community Center at 2450 Meadowview Road. On the first day, 3 Black Chefs expected to prepare 200 plates, but received more than 100 additional requests. The following day, the chefs got more than 600 requests from South Sacramento to Del Paso Heights.

To ensure 3 Black Chefs can continue to provide meals for the duration of the pandemic, funding is needed for food and supplies. “Any donation would be helpful and much appreciated,” Accius says. “And thanks in advance for your generosity!”

“Folks need a break. People can get their food, but they’re stretching and stretching, so we want to tell folks to place the troubles of their day on us, and let us support you,” Webster adds.

Donations can be made at fundly.com/three-black-chefs, through PayPal to 1voiceoftheyouth@gmail.com or at Cashapp to $berryaccius.

FEEDING THE FRONT LINE

Feeding the Front Line is a campaign to support medical personnel working in Sacramento’s hospitals by providing workers with hot meals while on the job.
“Those working the frontline in our community hospitals are making an enormous personal sacrifice on behalf of our country,” says Sheri Graciano who organized the fundraiser. “They are working very long hours and are separated from loved ones.”
Roxie Deli and Chandos have agreed to partner with Graciano and provide grab-and-go, with new restaurants joining the effort.
“Thanks to your support we fed the entire team in the Emergency Department at Sutter General Hospital yesterday,” Graciano recently reported.
To donate, visit gofundme.com, then search for “Feeding the Front Line.”
Also, to help local health care workers stay healthy and strong, Vibe Health Bar has partnered with UC Davis Medical Center, Mercy General Hospital and Sutter Health to provide medical teams with boxed lunches, smoothies and organic cold-pressed juices.
A donation of $10 will provide one boxed lunch for a health care worker. To donate, visit gofundme.com, then search for “Help Feed Our Healthcare Warriors.”

MEALS FOR FAMILIES

As local businesses strive to help the community during the COVID-19 health crisis, five Sacramento restaurants have launched Family Meal, a program that provides thousands of free pre-cooked meals to people in need each week.

Allora, Camden Spit & Larder, Canon, Binchoyaki and Mulvaney’s B&L prepare, assemble and drop off food kits where needed, including to seniors in Sacramento Housing and Redevelopment Agency apartment buildings.

Allora, Canon and Mulvaney’s provided 1,000 meal kits to organizations such as Our Lady of Guadalupe Church, which then redistributed the food among members.

Family Meal also helps small area farmers who sell primarily to restaurants continue to have a revenue stream until restaurants reopen.

Each kit costs $20 to produce, with $15 going toward labor and ingredients. The city of Sacramento will pay for SHRA’s meals, and a private underwriter sponsored Canon’s first 300 kits. However, the program is also seeking community support, corporate underwriting, and state and federal funding.

Every $20 raised will feed one family in need. To sponsor a meal, visit spotfund.com and search for “Family Meal Sacramento.”

CURBSIDE CRAWLS

In addition to restaurants, many small businesses in Midtown are still open for curbside pick-up and/or online orders—and won’t survive without shoppers. That’s why the Sacramento-based photobooth business, Giggle & Riot, has launched Curbside Crawl.

“Curbside Crawl is our solution for continuing to support local small businesses that are not just offering restaurant services,” says Caroline Winata, co-founder of Giggle & Riot. “It’s like a pub crawl, but you don’t go indoors—or even touch a door handle!”

A Curbside Crawl is available for Midtown, Downtown, Oak Park, Land Park/Curtis Park and East Sac. For a list of businesses on each crawl, visit giggleandriotfun.com.

If you stop by one of the businesses listed, take a selfie, upload it to social media and use #curbsidecrawlsacramento or #curbsidecrawl916 and the business name.

SAVE A RESTAURANT

Internet technology can’t prevent the spread of coronavirus, but it can make the battle a little easier.

While numerous restaurants in Sacramento have closed, many hope to operate on a limited basis by offering food for delivery or pickup. That’s where tech comes in.

By downloading food delivery apps such as DoorDash, GrubHub, Uber Eats, Postmates, Delivery.com and Instacart, residents can order food and have it safely brought to their homes without risking community contact.

The apps allow users to search for cuisine, price and wait times. The software explains delivery fees and allows for payment and tips. Visit the delivery websites or app store to compare services for easy access and registration.

A local tech-based alternative is Pick Up Fixe, a new app that allows Sacramento customers to safely order and pick up boxed, multi-course meals directly from restaurants. The web address is pickupfixe.com.

As restaurant owners struggle with economic uncertainty, many rely on creativity to keep the doors open. Hawks restaurants of Sacramento and Granite Bay devised “Hawks at Home,” which provides a weekly special menu that can be ordered over the phone and picked up.

Hawks will give a free meal to one of their employee’s families for every “Hawks at Home” meal sold. Visit hawksrestaurant.com or call (916) 791-6200 for information.

Beyond apps and online options, some restaurants still offer food the old-fashioned way, minus the table service. Their doors are open for delivery orders or for customers to arrive and take food away. 

FREE PARKING

The city of Sacramento has converted 10 on-street parking spaces near restaurants and coffee shops in Downtown and Old Sacramento to free temporary loading zones for people picking up food and goods.

“Facilitating easier curbside pick-up and food delivery is one of the many ways the city is making it easier for the public to safely access healthy meals from our restaurants and needed goods from our retailers,” says Councilmember Steve Hansen.

Locations are marked with colorful temporary signage at Front and K streets, 2nd and K streets, 5th and J streets, 7th and K streets, 8th and K streets, 8th and L streets, 10th and L streets, 12th and J streets, 13th and J streets, and 15th and K streets.

Restaurants may request evaluation for a curbside pick-up zone near their establishment by contacting 3-1-1. 

Free metered parking is also available after 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday and all day on Saturdays and Sundays. Temporary $6 early-bird flat rates are in place in all city garages for customers who park before 10 a.m. and leave after 4 p.m. Visit sacpark.org and godowntownsac.com for more information.

MIDTOWN MICRO-GRANTS

The Midtown Association has granted funds through its new emergency micro-grant program to 11 local businesses: Capital City Beads, Der Biergarten, The Golden Bear, Humani Pilates Studio, Nekter Juice Bar, The Red Rabbit Kitchen & Bar, Sacramento Eco Fitness, Identity Boutique, Revolution Wines, The Rind and Urban Yogi. 

In total, $5,129 was awarded to assist with creating to-go platforms, online programs and tutorials, live-streaming of fitness classes and more.

“We hope this is just one more way our amazing community is working collaboratively and creatively to lift one another up and move forward with positivity and promise for the future,” says Emily Baime Michaels, executive director of the Midtown Association.  

To donate to provide more micro-grants, call (916) 442-1500. For more information, visit exploremidtown.org.

FOCUS ON SAFETY

We don’t need to tell you that this is a stressful time for small business owners. Everyone is stepping up to do their part, but some—like East Sac Hardware owner Sheree Johnston—are going above and beyond.

In addition to taking immense sanitary precautions throughout the store (including limiting customers to six at a time and marking out correct social-distancing procedures at the cash registers), Johnston is making sure her elderly and health-compromised clients are as safe as possible.

She and her staff close the store one hour early (at 5 p.m.) to make deliveries to those who cannot make it into the store. They also offer curbside pick-up and in-store assistance to anyone who doesn’t want to wander around.

Johnston is also looking out for her team.

“At this time, I’m focusing on my employees, as this is a very stressful time for them,” she says. “I’m only paying essential bills to make sure I don’t have to lay anyone off and I buy lunch for all my employees every day as treat—and to support our local restaurants.”

HEALTH WITH DIGNITY

No one is more affected by COVID-19 than those on the frontlines—health care workers. Dignity Health, which operates six acute-care hospitals in the greater Sacramento area, is taking extra precautions and putting additional measures in place to ensure patients get the care they need as safely as possible.

The hospital group has expanded access to virtual health, as well as reorganized departments to care for any potential overflow of ICU patients. Staff has put prescreening measures in place and provided child care arrangements for essential team members. In addition, the group is working closely with regional hospitals on how to share resources and implement transfers to ensure COVID-19 patients are safely and skillfully treated without jeopardizing care for others.

“In this time of uncertainty, know that our dedication has not wavered,” says William Hodges, director of external communications. “As we’ve worked with public health agencies on the local and state level, as well as the CDC, we can say there are many on the frontlines of this pandemic whose perseverance is also strong. We are committed to doing our part to care for our community and to help stop the spread of this virus.”

VOLUNTEER ACTION CENTER

HandsOn Sacramento is helping volunteers connect with nonprofit organizations that need help distributing food and packing food boxes for the elderly, disabled, food insecure and those going through hard times during the COVID-19 public health emergency.

HandsOn Sacramento, created in 1998, is a full-service volunteer action center serving the greater Sacramento region (Sacramento, Yolo, Placer, El Dorado and Nevada counties) with more than 8,000 registered volunteers and 450 nonprofits.

For a list of COVID-19 volunteer opportunities, visit handsonsacto.org.

CALLING ON THE COMMUNITY

Sacramento Food Bank & Family Services is calling on the community to donate and volunteer during this public health emergency.

SFBFS is seeing increased cost in its operations. Agencies, school districts, local officials, families and individuals are reaching out that have never needed the services before. “We are finding our resources stretched and we urgently recognize the need for our community to come together to help feed our neighbors,” says SFBFS President and CEO Blake Young.

For every $1 donated, SFBFS provides five meals for a family in need. To donate, visit sacramentofoodbank.org.

SFBFS is also looking for volunteers between 10 and 64 years old with no underlying medical conditions. To access volunteer opportunities, visit sacramentofoodbank.org/volunteer.

For information on Food for Seniors, visit sacramentofoodbank.org/food-for-seniors or call (916) 456-1980. For families and individuals in need of food, visit sacramentofoodbank.org/find-food or call (916) 456-1980.

SUPPORT THE RED DOOR

Saint John’s Program for Real Change has launched an online fundraising campaign—Support the Red Door—to help keep its doors open to the more than 200 formerly homeless women and children residing on its campuses.

The 35-year-old nonprofit reports that it is facing a deficit of up to $150,000 per month to keep all current operations up and running due to repercussions of the COVID-19 health crisis.

Saint John’s has had to postpone multiple fundraising events, close its campus to more than 450 volunteers, and close its two restaurants and catering business. In addition, more than 200 women and children are quarantined on the campuses, adding to food and housing costs. “We are suffering a huge financial loss that is quickly escalating,” says Saint John’s Interim CEO Marc Cawdrey.

“We have reached out to local, state and federal agencies for assistance, to our church partners to request increased donations, and now, we are reaching out to all members of the community to help us as they are able,” Cawdrey says.

To donate to the Support the Red Door campaign, visit supportthereddoor.org. To create a fundraising page and enlist family and friends to donate, visit saintjohnsprogram.org/fundraise. To donate items, the best and safest way is through Amazon at saintjohnsprogram.org/amazon.

DONATE4SACRAMENTO

The city of Sacramento and a coalition of public, private, nonprofit, labor and philanthropic partners has launched Donate4Sacramento, a fundraising effort to help those hurt economically by the pandemic.

“This fund was established to deepen and expedite support for workers, families, community organizations and small businesses—many of whom were already experiencing some of our society’s deepest inequities,” says Chet P. Hewitt, president and CEO of Sierra Health Foundation.

The campaign has received major commitments from Health Net, Sierra Health Foundation, Comcast and Teichert Foundation. Donations can be made at donate4sacramento.org and specified in one of five ways: Support for Families, Support for Small Businesses, Services for Our Unhoused Neighbors, Nonprofit Support or General Support.

Funds will be administered by The Center at Sierra Health Foundation, Sacramento Region Community Foundation, United Way California Capital Region and the city of Sacramento.

VIRTUAL UNITED WAY LUNCHEON

Although its annual Women United Luncheon was canceled, United Way California Capital Region created a way for the organization’s 400 attendees to continue to support local foster youth through United Way’s social media channels.

Participants can join the virtual Women United Luncheon on Facebook at facebook.com/unitedwayccr; on Twitter at twitter.com/unitedwayccr; on Instagram at instagram.com/unitedwayccr; and on LinkedIn at linkedin.com/company/unitedwayccr.
“This virtual event will showcase the foster youth who are benefiting from the support of women across our region through our Women United action group,” says Stephanie Bray, president and CEO of United Way California Capital Region. “We hope that our supporters and friends will be inspired and uplifted by these young people during these challenging times.”

UNOPEN STUDIOS

To support Sacramento-area artists and galleries during the COVID-19 health crisis, UnOpen Studios has announced a Call for Artists.

UnOpen Studios, co-founded by local art maven D. Oldham Neath (otherwise known as The Art Lady), gives the visual arts community a creative outlet for stress relief during these uncertain times, and offers the public an opportunity to explore and support local artists and their crafts.

The project is designed to support those who are continuing to make and show art during the COVID-19 quarantine by providing a creative outlet and offering the general public an opportunity to explore local artists.

There is no entry fee and the Call for Artists is ongoing with no submission deadline. All entries must be from artists or galleries within Sacramento, Stockton and Modesto, including Placer and Yolo county.

Entrants are asked to submit a video (no longer than 5 minutes) that showcases work in a studio or gallery on a specific art project. Viewers will be encouraged to comment and rate the videos, learn more about the artists and purchase artwork. For guidelines, visit unopenstudios.com.

DANCE ON!

Even though the Sacramento Ballet’s season was cut short, it’s still making beautiful ballet available to local audiences through free videos of past performances at youtube.com/sacballet.

An anonymous Sac Ballet patron has stepped forward with a $5,000 challenge—the donor will match every gift to keep this vital local arts organization afloat. To make a tax-deductible donation, text BALLET to (916) 884-6255 or visit sacballet.org.

SUPPORT FOR LOCAL ARTS

To address the COVID-19 public health crisis, Sacramento’s Office of Arts and Culture is providing support to the local arts community in several important ways, including working with partners to develop online content and a list of resources for individual artists and arts nonprofits.

OAC also is coordinating with local organizations and the mayor’s office to develop emergency relief plans for the creative economy, and working with artists-in-residence and grantees regarding changes to their projects. 

In addition, many of OAC’s staff are available to offer assistance via email.

For up-to-date information, sign up for the OAC newsletter at arts.cityofsacramento.org or follow OAC on Facebook or Twitter.

EMERGENCY ANIMAL FOSTERING

At the end of March, the city’s Front Street Animal Shelter went into emergency evacuation mode to slow the spread of COVID-19—which meant no public, no adoptions.

After sending out a plea for foster homes, the shelter was overwhelmed by support—more than 100 dogs were placed in foster homes.

The Sacramento SPCA on Florin Perkins Road also saw the community step up in a big way. In just 48 hours, the shelter found new forever homes for 40 animals through adoption and placed 138 animals in emergency foster homes. The county shelter on Bradshaw Road also worked with rescue groups and the community to move animals out.

All three shelters are now closed to the public, with Front Street and the SSPCA suspending adoptions. However, the Bradshaw shelter is holding adoptions by appointment. Call (916) 875-2287 between 8:30 a.m. and 5 p.m. to speak with a shelter representative.

For information on finding lost pets, surrendering strays, becoming a foster home or donating, visit each shelter’s website: Bradshaw Animal Shelter at animalcare.saccounty.net; Front Street Animal Shelter at helpfrontstreet.com; or SSPCA at sspca.org.

PANTRY FOR PETS

The Sacramento SPCA has launched the community’s first drive-thru #PAWPantry to provide free emergency pet food to those who have lost their jobs. On the first day of operation, the nonprofit animal shelter distributed 154 bags of pet food to families in need.

The #PAWPantry operates every Tuesday and Friday from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at 6201 Florin Perkins Road. Visit sspca.org for more information or to make a donation to help the shelter continue this vital work for our animal community.

VIRTUAL TOURS

While you can’t visit local museums in person, two organizations have launched online platforms to keep Sacramentans connected to their favorite tourist sites.

The Center for Sacramento History and Sacramento History Museum are offering Anytime Tours as a free way for visitors to access content remotely. Now you can experience 50-minute digital walking tours through the Historic City Cemetery and Old Sacramento from the safety of quarantine. The tours can be accessed at anytimetours.oncell.com or by downloading free of charge from the App Store or Google Play by searching “Anytime Tours.”

The California Automobile Museum is offering Virtual Memberships via Patreon at patreon.com/calautomuseum. Memberships include access to video tours of featured exhibits, interviews with car owners and deep dives into the cars in the collection. All-access virtual memberships are $4 per month. VIP memberships are $10 per month and include exclusive episodes and access to VIP-only events once the museum re-opens to the public.

ENCINA CARE PACKAGES

Middle school history teacher Laney Martyn was concerned for her students at Encina Preparatory High School when the school closed due to COVID-19.

“At least 93 percent of students at my school are economically disadvantaged,” Martyn explains. During the closure “many of these students do not have the resources regularly provided at school. These students crave stability, love and creative activities, all of which have been suddenly taken from them.”

So Martyn took action. She began to assemble care packages filled with snacks, school supplies, academic resources and toys—all personally delivered by Martyn herself. After posting an Amazon wish list, she received so many donations—enough supplies to assemble 200 care packages—that she’s now encouraging anyone who would like to participate to donate directly to the Sacramento Food Bank. She’ll be delivering care packages to students and their families every day until June.

For information on donating to the Sacramento Food Bank, visit sacramentofoodbank.org.

HOMESCHOOLING TIPS

Like all local schools, Sacramento Country Day School has temporarily moved learning online for all pre-kindergarten through 12th grade students. The school upped its tech support—loaning devices and making internet access available to all families—and is hosting many of its normal activities on Zoom to keep its community connected.

Since families are suddenly faced with supporting their students from home, Country Day teachers weighed in with tips to keep kids motivated during this stressful time.

Create a schedule that includes time for work, movement, creativity and social time with friends via FaceTime or Zoom. Create a workspace that’s stocked with learning materials.

Monitor your child’s online activity. Some people are taking advantage by trying to gain access to your files through phishing and malware. When children are online, keep that activity in a public space so you can keep an eye and ear on what’s happening.  

Do not expect a concentrated effort all day long. Build in frequent breaks and vary activities from screen-based to paper and pencil. Understand that this situation is stressful and your child may need support to navigate their anxiety and their sadness.

For more information, visit saccds.org.

EDUCATION TRANSFORMED

The Los Rios colleges have moved all classes and student services online until further notice. During the campus closures, online resources can be found at scc.losrios.edu/onlineservices.

Sacramento State has transitioned all courses online for the remainder of the spring semester and university staff has transitioned to virtual operations wherever possible. Commencement ceremonies scheduled for May 15–17 at Golden 1 Center have been postponed, with no reschedule date yet announced. For up-to-date information and FAQs regarding classes and campus operations, visit csus.edu/alert/coronavirus.html.

All 13 school districts, including Elk Grove, Natomas, Sacramento City, San Juan and Twin Rivers, in Sacramento County have closed. Children under 18 who need food can access it at mobile food centers set up at school sites around the region—whether or not they’re enrolled in a school at the district. 

The Sacramento City Unified School District is offering free breakfast and lunch to students at 40 SCUSD school sites from 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. Free meals will also be available from 4:30 p.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday at 14 locations, including the district’s Serna Center. For a list of sites, visit scusd.edu/covid-19-meals.

BOOKSTORE FIX

For those missing your bookstore-browsing fix, locally owned bookstore Capital Books on K Street next to the Crest Theatre is offering curbside pickup or hand-delivery by shop owners Heidi, Ross and Tom. Also available is traditional shipping for all purchases made at capitolbooksonk.com.

And if you’re a regular attendee of the literary performance series Stories on Stage Sacramento, make sure you pick up a copy of the books that would have been featured at in-person events and participate in the nonprofit’s online book clubs. Capitol Books is the series’ official bookselling partner. For more information, visit storiesonstagesacramento.com.

LIBRARY ONLINE

The Sacramento Public Library has dozens of online resources, including books, magazines, newspapers and research, to keep you and your family busy during this time of social distancing and school closures.

Find thousands of ebooks or audiobooks, complete research for online classes or learn a new skill. Access daily editions of The Sacramento Bee and New York Times, or flip through magazines like National Geographic, Cosmopolitan and Food & Wine.

For genealogy research, online visitors can discover their unique family history with billions of free records from around the world, including census and vital records, immigration and passport records, periodicals, books and photos.
For activities appropriate for children of all ages, look for fun indoor activities and games to play. Check out quick videos offering ways to boost learning or streamline animated picture books. 

For more information or to get instant access to all these digital resources, apply online for a library card at saclibrary.org.

CALL FOR BLOOD DONATIONS

The American Red Cross is facing a severe blood shortage—due to an unprecedented number of blood drive cancellations during the COVID-19 health crisis—and is looking for healthy individuals to donate now.

The Red Cross has implemented precautions to ensure the safety of donors and staff. Healthy individuals can donate in areas that have issued shelter-in-place declarations. “Donating blood is a safe process and people should not hesitate to give or receive blood or platelets,” states the Red Cross.

The Red Cross also urges organizations to maintain scheduled blood drives as it works to identify and replace blood drives canceled due to workplace and school closures. The blood shortage could impact patients who need surgery, victims of car accidents and other emergencies, or patients fighting cancer.

Note that individuals should postpone donations for 28 days following travel to China and its special administrative regions, Hong Kong and Macau, as well as Iran, Italy and South Korea, or if diagnosed with or have had any contact with anyone with a suspected or confirmed case of COVID-19.

To find local blood drive locations, visit redcrossblood.org/give.html/find-drive.

SOCIAL DISTANCING ON AMERICAN RIVER PARKWAY

Spring is here, the sun is out—and families with children and dogs are converging on the American River Parkway, the perfect escape for much-needed exercise and fresh air during the COVID-19 public health crisis.

However, with social distancing still in effect, the American River Parkway Foundation reminds the community to practice recommended etiquette when walking, running or biking on the parkway trails.

Walkers, runners and hikers should practice social distancing of at least 6 feet when passing others. Keep to the left side going against traffic. Cyclists should ride by yourself, not in packs. Dog walkers should pick up after your animals. Equestrians should stay on designated trails. And fisherman should take all fishing gear, including lines, away with you.

FABRIC DONATION FOR MASKS

River Park resident Phil Pluckebaum proudly shared the story of his parents helping amid the coronavirus pandemic:

“My folks—Bill and Joyce Pluckebaum—own House to Home Interiors, a local window covering company out of Rocklin,” Phil says. “They donated their entire inventory of 100 percent cotton fabric to anyone who wanted to make masks for health care workers.”

With overwhelming demand, the company owners cleaned out their storage unit in less than eight hours. Phil also reports that Placer County deputies picked up fabric for folks to work on in jail, and that several large churches, including Bayside Church and Adventure Church, picked up fabric.

Visit www.myhousetohome.info.

ONLINE FITNESS CLASSES

Although all gyms and fitness studios are closed for the foreseeable future, there’s no reason you can’t continue to get your sweat on in the privacy of your own home—often even with your favorite instructors.

Union Barre’s East Sac studio is offering online classes with instructors like Jacqueline Mietus, who’s holding group classes via Zoom. Download the free Zoom app and log in, then enter class ID 9347576164 to be connected to Mietus’ lengthening and strengthening barre classes. Check out @union_barre on Instagram or unionworkout.com for more class times and instructors.

Land Park’s Studio Physique Dance & Fitness is pre-recording its adult dance classes at the studio and posting them for free viewing during the same time classes would normally be held. Register at physiquedancefitness.com.

California Family Fitness on Arden Way has closed its club—and frozen memberships so as not to charge people while shut—but is offering a wide variety of free online workouts at watch.lesmillsondemand.com/at-home-workouts.

Spare Time Sports Clubs (which runs Rio Del Oro and Natomas Sports Clubs, among others around the region) has made live-streaming real-time video workouts available to members featuring your favorite instructors. Classes are offered seven days a week through Zoom. Check out sparetimesportsclubs.com for schedules, class descriptions and links.

Carmichael Recreation and Park District has launched a Virtual Recreation Center at carmichaelpark.com/virtual-recreation. The website features online fitness classes, virtual tours and a Keeping Busy page full of activity ideas for kids.

Jessica Laskey can be reached at jessrlaskey@gmail.com. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram: @insidesacramento.

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