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32nd annual Historic Downtown Sonora Christmas Parade draws crowds

Sonora’s Washington Street was full of the sights and sounds of Christmas Friday during the 32nd annual Historic Downtown Sonora Christmas Parade. For more parade pictures, see the November 28-30 edition of The Union Democrat. Maggie Beck / Union Democrat, copyright 2015

Local festivities trump Black Friday shopping in downtown Sonora

Black Friday shoppers in East Sonora made a mess of a sweater display. Maggie Beck / Union Democrat
Most shoppers and businesses on South Washington Street in Sonora were in no rush to snatch up deals on Black Friday, the shopping holiday notorious for frenzied consumerism.

The event creeps closer to Thursday afternoon each year.

Jewelry stolen in Thanksgiving Day break-in

Read more... What was meant to be a day of giving thanks turned into something much different for Melissa Schultz.

The 78-year-old Sonora resident said multiple sentimental jewelry pieces were stolen from her East Walnut Drive home on Thursday.


Weather perfect for snowplay

Sonora residents Melissa Knobloch and her daughter Mattie, 12, work on building a snowman at Pinecrest Reservoir on Friday. Guy McCarthy / Union Democrat, copyright 2015
Hundreds of people bundled up Friday and took dogs, toboggans and picnics up Highway 108 to sled, make snowmen and take photos with their smartphones as sunny bluebird conditions combined with high banks of cloud for perfect snowplay weather between Mi-Wuk Village and Pinecrest.

Melissa Knobloch, 52, of Sonora, brought her daughter, Mattie, 12, son Cooper, 9, and two friends from Santa Cruz to check out the snow at Pinecrest Reservoir. She said she drove a Suburban sport utility vehicle, and she used auto 4-wheel-drive part of the way on the 108, then 4-wheel-drive high above the Pinecrest turnoff.

Four homes open doors for annual AAUW tour

The Knopf home is one of four that will be open for tours Dec. 5
Members of the American Association of University Women Sonora Branch are preparing for their major fundraiser of the year, the 49th annual Home Tour & Tea scheduled for Dec. 5.

A ticket allows people to tour four unique homes in Sonora and Columbia and enjoy tea in Faith Hall at the Columbia Presbyterian Church of the 49ers. The homes will be open for viewing from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., and the tea will be from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Those attending can choose to attend the tea first and then tour the homes, or the homes in any order, and then the tea. This event will take place rain or shine, but if it snows, it could be postponed until the following Saturday.

Santa to appear at museum open house

The man with the white beard and bright red suit at the Tuolumne City Museum Christmas open house on Dec. 5 will be realizing a lifelong dream by assuming the persona of St. Nicklaus.

The beard is real and so are the twinkling blue eyes behind the rimless glasses, as is the spirit of the season embodied in the role of Santa Claus assumed by Ron Smith, a lifetime member of the museum as well as its past president, stated a museum press release.

Monarch habitats are easy to create

From our coastal scrub and valley grasslands to our chaparral and oaken foothills, and up to our giant sequoias and High Sierra, California remains one of the most diverse flower habitats in the world.

It provides essential plants for attracting bees, butterflies, and other pollinators. The monarch butterfly is especially attracted to California native milkweed.

Student aims to help homeless

Summerville High School senior Nathan Clark, 17, of Twain Harte, discusses his decision to focus on homelessness for his senior project. Maggie Beck / Union Democrat, Copyright 2015.
 A Summerville High School senior is hitting the streets with local advocates in an effort to make a difference in the lives of homeless people throughout Tuolumne County.

Wildcats play for section title, aim for legacy

Sonora head football coach Bryan Craig addresses his team Wednesday after practice on a chilly night at Dunlavy Field. Bill Rozak / Union Democrat, Copyright 2015.
 After practice on Wednesday night, Sonora High assistant football coach Rusty Price wanted his players to think about one thing — leaving a legacy.

Church Thanksgiving dinner a place for sharing

Bill Dunlavy Sr. helps prepare a Thanksgiving meal Thursday at Sonora United Methodist Church. Jason Cowan / Union Democrat, Copyright 2015.
 Follow the scent from the back of Sonora United Methodist Church, through the cathedral, down a flight of stairs.

Poll Question

Should 10,000 Syrian refugees be allowed to resettle in the United States?


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The Union Democrat 11/28/15

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