Mike Read/Pages From The Past
100 Years Ago
— The Novato Farm Center has taken up the matter of gopher eradication in earnest. The wet winter has done much to rid the community of the pest, but the residents of the district intend to complete the work. Dr. W. H. Busher was appointed chairman of a committee in the district to plan a campaign. Demonstrations were held last week by Farm Advisor Boissevain, assisted by County Horticultural Commissioner Redmayne at R. H. Trumbull’s and at A. D. White’s. The habits of pests were explained, and various traps, bombs, and poisons demonstrated. The merchants of the town this week have special sales on these devices and materials, and it looks like the whole community is co-operating in this work. Cash prizes of $2.50, $1.50 and 50 cents have been offered to the children catching the most gophers. Dr. Busher will be at the Community House next Saturday, as well as the following Saturday, February 19 to receive tails of the gophers caught. The tail, this year, is being used for credit as it was rumored someone had been saving skulls. The demonstrations were attended by forty-six people and were very effective in spreading proper methods of eradication.
75 Years Ago
— The property of Charles C. Smith and Tauno Sjoblom at the corner of 101 Highway and Vallejo Streets has been filled with red rock for the proposed building of a service station to be jointly operated by the two men.
— Walter Baldwin, former Novato resident, who entered the Service some months ago, and has recently been discharged, is now employed as manager of the grocery department at Waite and Hale’s Market. The Baldwins have moved here from their temporary home in Chico.
— Novato’s hopes for a sewer system suffered a set-back on Monday when District Attorney Al Bagshaw ruled that the county could not loan money for a survey for the disposal plant. The plan was to have the county make the survey at their expense and to be paid back after the district had floated a bond issue. However, Frank Jaques, chairman of the local Sanitary Board, reported that he immediately applied to the Federal Works Administration for a similar loan and was accepted and granted the money to go ahead with the plans.
— “ADVANCE” TO PUBLISH TWO MORE PAGES- Long has been the need for this paper to publish extra pages so that a more complete coverage of local and county news can be printed and that the advertisements can be strategically placed throughout the columns, and full benefit of their space can be realized. Up until this time the curtailment of printing paper and supplies has made this impossible, but now with the easing of the situation, we hope to publish extra pages when there is the need.
50 Years Ago
— The Novato Boosters Club, has been advised by Hamilton to meet elsewhere, because the Bar and Restaurant Owners Association has objected to the number of the members boosting the business at the club’s bar. Another sore point with those in business in Marin County who feel that Hamilton facilities sometimes compete unfairly is the new Base Exchange nearing completion on Hamilton. (They talk about closing Hamilton and they have a new Base Exchange going up?) The new building should be ready in a couple of months. Hamilton spokesmen don’t like to talk about it so that the talk won’t stir criticism of the project and make the natives restless.
— Safeway may have a third store in the Novato area someday. They’re reportedly interested in the San Marin neighborhood shopping center. But some other supermarket chains are too. A shopping center could conceivably open there in a couple of years. Such a facility would not compete with the downtown area as it would contain only neighborhood shopping outlets.
— Big Townhouse Condominium Project Gets Go-Ahead – The McKeon Construction Co. has been approved for a total of 324 four-plex units and 204 townhouses. The 5-acre site is on the northwest corner of South Novato Boulevard and Highway 101 and access has been okayed from South Novato Boulevard. Area to the west of Redwood Boulevard extension will be developed last and will be used for a school site if needed. Six-acres on South Novato Boulevard are reserved for a neighborhood shopping center.
— The Rev. Stanley V. Gjervik, pastor of Good Shepherd Lutheran Church, was honored by his congregation at a surprise celebration marking the 25th anniversary of his ordination. The congregation presented as their gift the funds for a trip to the Holy land and Norway for the pastor and his wife. (Norway is the country where his parents were born.)
— Grub day with students trying to dress as sloppy as possible was one of the many activities held at Sinaloa Junior High School during spirit week. One observer described the various attire as “really colorful.” A pie-eating contest was held, and hush and slave days were also observed during the fun-filled week.
— J.J. Perez, a Novatoan for the past five years, has opened the J.J. Barber Shop at 906 Grant Avenue. Perez says he’s had “just a little bit of experience” – 39 years of barbering in downtown San Francisco before deciding to open his shop here in Novato. The J.J. Barber Shop has a brand-new interior which incorporates wood paneling.
— The city council agreed to help subsidize Western Weekend with another $1,000. The city already had budgeted $1,000 for the annual June celebration. Jack Whitcomb, representing Western Weekend Inc., said insurance and city police costs have gone up. The council also passed a resolution expressing its sorrow at the death of Casey Van Gronigen, president of Western Weekend, who died this week.
25 Years Ago
— The Buck Center for Research in Aging funneled $632,611 in Buck Trust funds into the campaigns for Measures’ A and B, campaign disclosure documents reveal. The Buck Center out spent its opponents almost nine-to-one; the Committee to Save Mount Burdell waged its campaign on $70,859. In the final days of the campaign, the Buck Center plowed more than $224,000 — more than three times what its opponents spent all year — into the two-pronged campaign. It may have paid off: The Buck Center won the approval of Novato voters, who cast their ballots on Measure B, and is currently pursuing annexation of the Buck Center site to the City of Novato. Heavy spending, however, was not enough to win the hearts of voters countywide. The Center lost Measure A and will almost certainly face another court battle.
— The Novato Chamber of Commerce Ambassadors Club recently named some new members. The chamber welcomes Donna Sanders, Kevin Rosa, Bill Cope, Susanne Dods, Cathy Nickel and Wayne Capers.
— Bob Valentino has re-purchased Stefano’s Pizza at 5420 Nave Drive, one mile south of Hamilton. Valentino, who sold the operation three years ago, recently took over the shop and is in the process of a massive cleanup and partial remodel of the 3,500 square foot restaurant. Plans also include remodeling and updating the 700 square foot banquet room, which is perfect for meetings and parties. “We want to bring this place back to rigid on-time delivery and rigid quality control,” said Valentino, who also owns the two other Stefano’s Pizza sites in Terra Linda and Mill Valley. As owner of Stefano’s Pizza for 15 years, Valentino says he has sold more than 2 million pizzas and was recently awarded the Best Pizza and Best Pizza Delivery by the Pacific Sun newspaper.