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Archive By Author - John Branch


ROTA Incurs Financial Penalty

Riverbank Oakdale Transit Authority has incurred a $14,000 penalty for failing to meet the 10 percent fare box ratio of the state's funding for operating the public bus system, ROTA Coordinator Donna Bridges reported in her memo to the board that met yesterday, Feb. 14.

February 14, 2012 | John Branch | Local News


Ramblings - Jumping The (Shopping) Gun

Black Friday has come and gone but it roused more emotions this year because many stores decided to jump the gun and start their sales at midnight on Thanksgiving Day instead of some ungodly hour the next morning.

November 30, 2011 | John Branch | Local Columns


Riverbank Bicycle Ride Expects 350 Participants

Several hundred bicyclists are expected to stream out of Riverbank High School on Sunday, Oct. 9 for rides through the farmlands and grasslands to the Sierra Nevada foothills as part of the Riverbank Cheese & Wine Exposition.

October 05, 2011 | John Branch | Local Sports


Rotary Introduces Changes For Expo

The street fair and festival combo known as the Riverbank Cheese & Wine Exposition will return to the downtown area on Saturday and Sunday, Oct. 8 and 9 with a few tweaks made by the sponsoring Riverbank Rotary Club to an event that has proved hugely successful year after year.

October 05, 2011 | John Branch | Local News


Consolidated Fire Offers Aid To Oakdale

Directors of Stanislaus Consolidated Fire Protection District (SCFPD) have agreed to help the depleted forces of the Oakdale City and Oakdale Rural fire departments by hiring a part-time Chief Officer to lead fire and rescue operations in the Oakdale area and providing some administrative help by the SCFPD Chief.

September 14, 2011 | John Branch | Local News


Ramblings - Education Can Be Fun?

The seasons move on. The schools are back in session. We're headed toward Friday night football, cold and rain, and Christmas. Forget shopping. Did you know Riverbank officials are already planning the Christmas parade? "But not yet, not yet," as the hero's friend in the movie Gladiator says. The summer crickets are still calling, metaphorically, and doves still cooing across town.

August 31, 2011 | John Branch | Local Columns


County Fair Welcomes Visitors

Complete with rainbow-colored parrots, trundling turtles and slithering snakes, the ever popular Rainforest Adventure exhibit is back, the carnival rides are even more stomach-churning than before, the young farmers' animal barns include a petting zoo and the stage shows range from circus slapstick such as Jest In Time to country singers like Clint Black.

July 20, 2011 | John Branch | Local News


Oakdale, Riverbank Councils Slate Police Merger Meet

Looking into the possibility of sharing police services, Riverbank and Oakdale councils have set a date of Monday, Aug. 29 in Riverbank City Council chambers for a joint study session on that topic.

July 20, 2011 | John Branch | Local News


Ramblings - Messing About In Boats

Rafting is all the rage at this time of year and seeing the enthusiasts buck through the white water rapids or float lazily down the calmer stretches of the Stanislaus River, I'm reminded of my personal experiences of going down a river.

June 29, 2011 | John Branch | Local Columns


ROTA Directors Mull County Takeover

Riverbank Oakdale Transit Authority (ROTA) directors will delay raising their public bus fares, originally planned to become effective July 1, pending consideration of a Stanislaus County proposal to assume transit operations for the cities of Riverbank and Oakdale.

June 22, 2011 | John Branch | Local News


Bypass Overview Draws 100 Plus To Meeting

Planning for the "bypass" - otherwise known as the North County Corridor project - hasn't gone away. While planning began in 2008 and the first phase of construction is not slated to begin until 2018, the public interest continues to run high. Area residents just haven't had a recent meeting.

June 22, 2011 | John Branch | Local News


Seniors Protest Proposed Cell Phone Tower

Some area senior citizens are protesting plans to build a 70-foot cell phone tower in the northwest part of Oakdale at a meeting hastily called by seniors, the Community Development Department and AT &T Mobility Company.

April 20, 2011 | John Branch | Local News


Ramblings – Eye Of The Storm

Yes, I know I wrote a column about the weather last time and that was only a month and a half ago. But you must agree the weather has been unusual this winter and is probably worth another column. What else is there to talk about? The weather affects everybody. It sometimes seems everyone is cowering indoors for shelter from the rain, cold and wind and nothing is going on outdoors. Everything is on hold awaiting the long delayed spring, one that lasts more than a day.

March 30, 2011 | John Branch | Local Columns


Ramblings – Weather Or Not

"If you don't like the weather, try waiting five minutes" is what they say in England.

February 16, 2011 | John Branch | Local Columns


Ramblings - Memories Of Christmas

Light streaming from an open church door across the snow, a priest in full vestments standing at the door to shake hands with his parishioners as they muffled their faces against the winter cold and headed for their cars, their breath steaming in the frigid air and snow crunching underfoot.

December 29, 2010 | John Branch | Local Columns


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