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How does your garden grow?

in Community/Environment

During the pandemic, Turlock Unified School District noticed that gardens at the elementary schools were unused due to a lack of students and personnel to attend to them. This provided the opportunity for high school Agriculture interns and the TUSD Farm to work together in bringing those gardens back to life before students returned to campuses this fall. During this process, it was noted that four of the elementary sites in the Turlock district did not have access to gardens on their campuses.

“Turlock Unified School District strives to educate all students through an equity lens, including access to live learning labs. With support of district personnel and the school board, the TUSD Farm and interns began to focus on how to implement gardens for all elementary sites,” said Coordinator of Environmental Studies and Applied Horticulture Hail Bream.

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Development continues to thrive in Turlock

in business/Community

While the pandemic may have put many things on halt over the past 19 months, one thing that didn’t stop in Turlock is the development and opening of new businesses in town.

Some businesses were lost in 2020, like Hometown Buffet, the downtown Dust Bowl taproom and In Shape on Geer Road, but the construction of new establishments has occurred on the regular since last March. Turlock celebrated the development of a brand-new Dutch Bros. Coffee shop, Sourdough & Co. and Domino’s Pizza near Stanislaus State, and the other side of town welcomed a Popeye’s Louisiana Kitchen to the Turlock Town Center. 

Continue Reading on Turlock Journal


in Community/Housing

A recently approved housing project near the edge of town is set to add even more new homes to the city’s growing number of parcels. 

The Balisha Ranch subdivision was approved by the Turlock Planning Commission on Sept. 2, giving the go-ahead to Woodward Partners LLC for the construction of 50 new single-family homes at 2930 E. Tuolumne Road near Denair. The 17.4-acre site is currently home to a walnut orchard right along City limits.

Katie Quintero, the City of Turlock’s Deputy Director of Development Services and Planning Manager, said the Balisha Ranch subdivision is one of 16 housing projects currently underway throughout town. In total, these housing and apartment complex developments will add 1,105 new dwelling units once completed. 

Continue Reading on Turlock Journal

Surface water plant operational by June 2023?

in Community

Currently every drop of water that comes out of faucets in Ceres comes straight out of the ground. But come June 2023, some of that water will be directly piped from the Tuolumne River after it’s been treated.

Construction is about 25 percent completed and running $1 million under budget, a manager of the project told the Ceres City Council on Monday evening.

Bob Granberg, general manager of the Stanislaus Regional Water Authority (SRWA), a joint powers authority to allow the cities of Ceres and Turlock to buy water from Turlock Irrigation District and operate the plant to treat and deliver water at cost, gave the update.

Continue Reading on Ceres Courier

Students bring a unique perspective to Sept. 11

in Community/People

This weekend marks the 20th anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks. While most adults have vivid memories of that infamous day, students today were not alive when those events took place and their understanding of the tragic events vary. In Turlock schools, the weeks leading up to the day will be used as an opportunity for remembrance and for students to learn more about the historic event.

9/11 is currently not part of TUSD curriculum, but it does cover the history of first responders and have discussions regarding the day.

“With the 20th anniversary approaching, students are likely to see images or videos on social media and across multiple media sources.  That means children are likely to come to school and want to talk about what they’ve seen. 9/11 is not specifically part of the curriculum, especially for our youngest learners.  They do cover communities and community helpers (fire, police, etc.),” said Chief Communication Coordinator at TUSD Marie Russell.

Continue Reading on Turlock Journal

Mask mandate returns for Stanislaus County

in Community/Health/News/People

People will again have to wear masks indoors in Stanislaus County as COVID-19 cases surge and the local healthcare systems strain under increased hospitalizations.

The order requires all people to wear face coverings when indoors in workplaces and public settings, with limited exemptions, and recommends that businesses make face coverings available to individuals entering their businesses. This order will take effect Saturday.

“The decision to go forward with a masking mandate is based on the need to protect our healthcare system. There is a concerning rise in hospitalizations that is threatening hospital capacity,” said Dr. Julie Vaishampayan, Public Health Officer for Stanislaus County. “Masking is an essential tool that limits the transmission of the Delta variant as we continue to vaccinate the people who live, work and learn in Stanislaus County.”

Continue Reading on Turlock Journal

Heat soured Stanislaus fair’s opening weekend. Next few days won’t be quite so hot

in Community

The Stanislaus County Fair will resume its pandemic-altered run Friday, July 16, without the extreme heat of opening weekend.

The fair normally runs for 10 straight days, but COVID-19 concerns split the 2021 version into three July weekends. The Turlock grounds has no carnival or concerts, but it does have livestock events, motor sports and limited fair food.

The food can be purchased from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday and from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Sunday. Soft drinks are available, too.

Continue Reading on Modesto Bee

City turns focus from homeless encampments to long-term planning

in Community/News/People

After clearing out major homeless encampments throughout the city in recent months, the Turlock City Council on Tuesday approved the next steps in addressing the local unhoused crisis.

The Council unanimously voted Tuesday night to terminate a previously ratified local emergency proclamation, which focused on encampments and ratified a new local emergency focusing on unsheltered homeless and re-appropriates unspent funding from the first proclamation to be used for the issue moving forward.

Interim Chief of Police Steven Williams provided the Council with an update Tuesday on the City’s local emergency in response to its Unsheltered Homeless and Encampment Crisis, which was ratified on March 16. Since then, City staff has partnered with county resources and local shelters to make contact with unhoused individuals living in notable encampments throughout Turlock, connecting them with available resources before clearing out the camps.

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‘The David in the David & Goliath match’ | Turlock nonprofit in nail-biting race for $100,000 grant

in Community/Food

TURLOCK, Calif. — A nonprofit children’s ministry in Turlock is throwing down with some heavyweight contenders in a race for a $100,000 grant.

“We’re the underdog here,” said Jolynn DiGrazia, director for Westside Ministries. “We’re the David in the David & Goliath match.”

To be specific, that match is a contest from Kubtoa Tractor Corporation. It’s a national contest that’s part of the company’s Hometown Proud Grant Program. The winner in the contest is decided by votes. They chose five organizations, and Westside Ministries has a real chance of taking the top spot and taking home $100,000 for the Westside Food Literacy Program.

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Votes needed to secure $100,000 grant for Westside Ministries

in Community

Westside Ministries is hoping the community can make one final push in online voting for the Kubota Tractor Corporation’s Hometown Proud Grant Program, which would bring the nonprofit $100,000 to support its Food Literacy Program. 

As of Friday, Westside Ministries was in second place in the competition and trailed the Wayne County Ag Center project by about 800 votes. The voting tallies have been close; at one point Westside Ministries was behind by less than 200 votes and had even pulled ahead for a brief moment last week. 

Voting for the competition began on May 24 and will close at 11:59 p.m. on June 25. Westside Ministries has encouraged community members to vote once daily for them in the grant program, utilizing social media platforms like Facebook and TikTok to spread the word. 

Continue Reading on Turlock Journal

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