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Valley Home News for September 16, 2009
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Mike Burghardt and son, Jeff spent the last week enjoying a fun filled trip to Indianapolis to attend the NHRA Funny Car Races and watch their friend, John Force, his daughter, Ashley and John’s son-in-law, Robert compete in the races. The trip was also a first airplane ride for Jeff. The trip began with a mix-up in seating for Mike and Jeff, both of whom suffer mal-de-mer if they cannot sit next to a window. The trip had been planned for the past 5 months with both scheduled for window seating only to arrive at the airport to be told the airline had canceled the seating arrangement and given the two center seating. Not a good start for the trip, nor was the weather report predicting rain during the race days.

After a three hour flight, the two arrived at their hotel only to be told that the non-smoking room they had requested was not available. The hotel made amends and Mike and Jeff were given rooms at the hotel next door for the night and then were able to return to the first hotel the following day for the rest of the week.

The weather began to show signs of the predicted rain, and Mike and Jeff decided to do a little sightseeing. They began with a pilgrimage to the late Oakdale High School graduate and Funny Car Racer and friend, Eric Medlen’s grave site located not far from the race track. Mike and Jeff then took a bus tour of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway before heading off for a tour of the Chicago Industrial Museum. The two also enjoyed a walking tour of the football field at Lucas Oil Stadium where the Indianapolis Colts play.

Between the rain showers Mike and Jeff enjoyed watching the Funny Car races and were thrilled to see their friend Ashley Force win against her race opponent for the big win of the day. Later in the day she was asked to throw out the first ball at the Chicago White Sox game.

The fun part of the trip for Mike and Jeff seemed over too soon and it was time to head home. The dark cloud which hung over their heads at the beginning of the trip reappeared. Arriving at the airport they discovered their flight had undergone change, instead of flying back home via Salt Lake to Sacramento the way they had come, they were now scheduled to fly from Indianapolis to Atlanta and then back to California, turning their 3 hour previous flight into a 5 hour return trip. They came home with memories that will last a lifetime.


The Valley Home MAC meets tonight at 6:30 p.m. in the Harold Pope School library at 4600 Texas Ave, Valley Home. As usual, the meeting agenda has scheduled community reports and updates from Lt. Darin Gharat from the county sheriff’s department, from Officer Chuck Leon of the California Highway Patrol, and from representatives from the county parks and recreation department and the Valley Home Community Center as well public comments pertaining to items not on the agenda. Comments from council members will be given as well as a Chief Executive Office report from Raul Mendez, who will include information on the Valley Home MAC vacancies.

Plan on attending this Valley Home MAC meeting as it is all about your community and news from various Stanislaus County representatives that can and will affect your community.