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Caspar Community Meeting: January 2001
What's Up in Caspar?
Caspar residents are invited to gather on Sunday afternoon, January 21st, starting at 2PM, to hear what neighboring organizations have planned for the year 2001. At the meeting, convened by the Caspar Community at the Mendocino Coast Jewish Community Center, sometimes called the Shul, in downtown Caspar, these groups have been invited to summarize their work.
Representatives from Caspar Community, Mendocino Land Trust, Caspar Children's Garden, Caspar Grange #832, Caspar Concerned Citizens, Campaign to Save Jackson State Redwood Forest, Point Cabrillo Reserve, Jughandle Creek Farm, State Parks, Mendocino County, and several other groups have promised to make brief presentations of their goals and plans for 2001.
Since acquisition of the Caspar Headlands, Caspar residents have turned to other "hot topics," according to Michael Potts, a founding member of the non-profit Caspar Community. "Improving the qualities of village life, including restoration of our Post Office, our town's pathways, our community center, freedom to walk the headlands and down to the beach, all this is beginning to happen," he says.
"Think in terms of our hundred-year plan and it becomes clear that Caspar and the whole resident coastal community is approaching a major crossroads -- in fact, the intersection of Highway One and Caspar-Fern Creek Road," adds poet-singer Meridian Green, another founding board member. "Looking out from our 'sacred places,' like the headlands and duck pond, we see that preserving the quality of all life has to be our goal, and what becomes of the crossroads is crucial. All four corners of this crossroad are the final holding of the Caspar Cattle Company and this 140 acres are next on the auction block now that the Headlands deal is in public ownership. How these lands are used in the future will affect everyone who travels between Mendocino and Fort Bragg."
Many important values for the entire coastal community will be affected by changes at the crossroads. Northwest, the schoolhouse(and hoped-for community center) enlivens the sweeping view from Highway One across the picturesque village and headlands to the ocean. Southwest, a grouping of affordable rental houses is at risk; already four affordable rentals formerly owned by Caspar Cattle been removed from the market. The duck pond on the northeast corner is used by migratory birds as well as fire fighters, and appreciated by children and adults alike. Precious water from wells on the southeast quarter serves not only Caspar but many other coastal residents and businesses who have water trucked in during dry times.
The population of Caspar is small, and until recently, quiet. "In fact," Green observes, "most of the inhabitants of the Caspar Cattle Company holdings are cows." Planning for the future, Caspar's residents have spawned a number of new organizations, and many other new and existing groups have realized that Caspar is a natural focal point for those who live here on the coast. The Caspar Community solicits the support and inspiration of community builders from the greater coastal and global communities as we look to shape the future of the Caspar Crossroads. "If you're interested in preserving the quality of life here," says Judy Tarbell, another founder, "we hope you'll make it to this meeting. We're making exciting things happen, and they'll be even more exciting if you're involved."
As always, more information about Caspar can be found at CasparCommons.org . If your group would like to make a brief presentation at the Caspar meeting, please leave a message at 964-8978.
written by Michael Potts for the Mendocino Beacon, 18 January 2001
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