Earik Beann was compelled to find a way to decompress after the enduring the harrowing chaos of the 2017 wildfires. As most wildfire victims chose to move away or try and move on from the inferno’s destruction, Beann chose to relive the nightmare in the form of a deeply personal memoir. His book, “Pointe Patrol,” details the vigilant efforts of nine companions and one dog, battling to save their neighborhood from destructive flames and devious looters.
“After you go through something like that, you get pumped on it, and how I decompress is writing,” Beann says. “The next thing I know, I was 50 pages in.” Beann recalls telling friends and family encouraging him to write the book after sharing details from the adventures of the “Pointe Patrol” group during those two weeks in October. Though some memories are seared into Beann’s mind, others remained somewhat hazy. “I had to go back through all the text messages I had from that time to serve as an outline for the book,” he says.
Since the book’s release, Beann says the response has been “really positive; especially from people touched by the fires locally.” Following the release of his book, Beann handed out a stack of copies at Peet’s Coffee on Mendocino Avenue in Santa Rosa. “People would come up and tell me their story and we’d automatically have this bond over the experience,” he says.
The book has made Beann and his Doberman Oscar, more recognizable around town. When taking Oscar out for walks now, Beann says people will roll down their windows and say, “Hey, is that Oscar?” Beann admits that Oscar would like to have another adventure, but knows his four-legged companion is lucky to have made it through this one. As for these days, Beann feels lucky about is now being a part of such a tight-knit community. “What touched me the most was not the fire, but how the community rose up to embrace itself,” he says.
Do you ever wonder where fairies live? In Cloverdale, tiny handcrafted and hand-painted fairy doors, have been popping up around town since Mother’s Day in 2018. Today, there are 31 doors and thanks to the woman behind it all, Lynn Calza, it’s gaining a lot of attention community wide.
It all started when Calza, between herself, her children and some art supplies, created 18 fairy doors and placed them around Cloverdale. “I chose Cloverdale because it’s been my home away from home for over seven years,” says Calza. “I wanted it to be a gift, so my friend Marisa Scalese and I drove around town the night before Mother’s Day installing them. It was supposed to be a one-time thing but has turned into something bigger.” Once it became apparent it was turning into something the community supported and encouraged, they established a Facebook page for fairy doors and enlisted more fairy friends.
Since they put the doors in place, other towns began catching on and adding them, too. “We’ve heard Healdsburg already had some, which we didn’t know until recently,” she says. “This has turned into such a big phenomenon for Cloverdale, we love to see people taking the idea and making it their own. If another town contacted us for help, we would happily show them the ropes.”
Since last May, several doors have been lost or damaged, and upkeep can be challenging. “Our small team can’t keep up work of managing all 31 doors now,” says Calza. “We asked if people would adopt the doors and help keep them maintained and stocked for visitors. Almost all were instantly adopted.”
Eventually, Calza and her team hopes to branch out and offer courses and services to teach the art to others. “We’ve thrown our hearts and wallets into this project, so we’re thinking of low-cost ideas to help recoup some of our expenses, which would also encourage more people to join in on the kindness-through-art movement,” she says. “Wherever it goes from here, you’ll find us lending a hand and keeping the kindness moving forward.” For more information, visit their Facebook page at
Cows grazing along hillsides and in seaside meadows are a picturesque and familiar sight in Marin and Sonoma counties. Dairy farms have been a local presence for more than 100 years, but thes...