Tom Hanks’ beloved Airstream is going to auction in Carmel

Actor Tom Hanks is auctioning off an Airstream trailer was his “home away from home” while filming movies over a period of 20 years.

Hanks said in an interview for Bonhams Magazine: “I got it in the days when movies moved slower. I had spent too much time in regular trailers with ugly decor and horribly uncomfortable furniture, so I decided to buy a brand-new Airstream shell with an interior made to my own request.”

Bidding begins on August 13 in an auction in Carmel. More details are here.

Joint Statement on the 2021 Nevada County Fair shows community-wide solidarity

“The annual Nevada County Fair is the signature event of the year, bringing together a cross section of our community to celebrate the end of summer. While the Fair will go on this year, we recognize that our community is currently experiencing a dangerous surge of COVID-19 infections, fueled by the highly contagious Delta variant.

“To protect the health and safety of our community, the Nevada County Fair, the Nevada County Public Health Department, Sierra Nevada Memorial Hospital, and health leaders from across the community strongly recommend that all who attend the Fair wear a mask both indoors and outdoors, regardless of vaccination status.

“Furthermore, we strongly recommend that anyone age 65 and over, those with compromised immune systems, and those with underlying health conditions consider not attending the Fair this year.

“Anyone who is in isolation due to a positive COVID-19 test or is in quarantine due to an exposure to someone who has tested positive must not attend the Fair.

“The Nevada County Fair has taken extraordinary measures to protect the health of all fairgoers. We ask that exhibitors, vendors, and visitors do their part to prevent further COVID-19 infections, hospitalizations, and deaths during this unprecedented time.


Patrick Eidman, Chief Executive Officer, Nevada County Fair

Dr. Brian Evans, CEO and President, Sierra Nevada Memorial Hospital

Jill Blake, Director, Nevada County Public Health Department

Dr. Scott Kellermann, Public Health Officer, Nevada County Public Health Department

Dr. Glennah Trochet, Deputy Public Health Officer, Nevada County Public Health Department

Dr. Alinea Stevens, Medical Director, Chapa-De Indian Health

Dr. Peter Van Houten, Chief Medical Officer, Sierra Family Health Center

Dr. Ingrid Bauer, Interim Chief Medical Officer, Western Sierra Medical Clinic

Dr. Sarah Woerner, Pediatrician

Dr. Roger Hicks, Medical Director, Yubadocs”

Memories of a farm-to-table banquet in our town

A cool Facebook memory popped up on my page this morning: The Nevada City “farm to table banquet.” As I reported at the time:

“Welcome friends, neighbors and guests!” read the program for the sold-out Nevada City farm to table banquet on Sunday night in the historic downtown. “Tonight you will encounter the culmination of months of dreaming and laying plans on how we could deliver the best of Nevada City and its abundance.

“This seven-course meal has been tailored by the seasons and the hard-working hands of our farmers. We come together so as to assist the ever popular First Friday Art Walk and their music scene on the Boardwalk.

“But the biggest reason we hold this banquet is to simply exemplify the potential of Nevada City, its citizens, and the abundance that originally brought us to this area and keeps us here.”

We all sat at one long table of 120 diners on Commercial Street under the terrazzo lights — a magical setting. It was our third time, as one of the servers Mackenzie Hardwick reminded us. We noted how our son’s middle name was Mackenzie (one of his grandmothers’ maiden names). It was an eclectic mix of diners.

Toward the end of the night, I sat on a hay bale with Matt Margulies, and we marveled at the sight (joking that it contradicted the often acrimonious nature of late in Nevada City). 

Like the Amgen Tour of California (thanks to Duane Strawser), events like this showcase our outdoors, bounty of local food, farmers, music, arts and culture, and the bright side of small-town life.


“Reopen the Mine” now sending us mailers

This weekend, we received a slick four-page mailer from “Rise GV” asking us to “urge the Board of Supervisors and other county officials to jump start our local economy by strongly supporting the re-opening of the Idaho-Maryland Mine.”

It began: “Today, Nevada County is struggling to build a stronger economy, and Rise Grass Valley’s plan for the Idaho-Maryland Mine offers a bright future to families who want to deepen their roots in Nevada County.”

One of the bold claims: “The mine will add $50 million annually to the local economy — while protecting our natural environment.”

It included a postcard for us to fill out with our name, address and phone under the heading “I support re-opening the Idaho-Maryland Mine.” We were supposed to mail it back to the “Rise GV” group. “No postage necessary if mailed in the United States,” it read on the other side.

“We’ll use these cards later to show the Board of Supervisors that there is there is strong support throughout the community for re-opening the Idaho-Maryland Mine,” the postcard read, directing us to the

Let the Games begin!

A gold medal for the “state of Denmark”

Hamlet would have been proud! Tonight, we watched Anne-Marie Rindom of Denmark win a gold medal in the women’s sailing competition in the 2020 Tokyo Summer Olympic  Games. Sweden finished second, and the Netherlands finished third.

The race is in a one-person Laser Radial sailboat ( 

American Anna Tunnicliffe won the competition in 2008 in Beijing. She is now a CrossFit competitor.

In Sweden, Anna-Marie also incorporated sailing into her schooling. She studied Sport Science at Aarhus University, where her thesis involved developing a fixed physical test for Laser sailors.

We’ve sailed Lasers on the West Shore of Lake Tahoe. It is a great all-around boat for the Lake and used in beginning, intermediate and advanced sailing classes.

The first Hmong American to win a gold medal at the Tokyo Olympics

“The first Hmong refugees arrived in Minnesota in 1975,” according to “Today that population has grown to 80,000 people, its members now represented throughout business, government and culture in the North Star State. On Thursday, a daughter of that diaspora added a new milestone to the Hmong American story: Olympic champion.

“Sunisa Lee, an 18-year-old from St. Paul who goes by Suni, won the women’s gymnastics all-around gold medal, scoring 57.433 to hold off Brazil’s Rebeca Andrade by .135 and the Russian Olympic Committee’s Angelina Melnikova by .234 at Tokyo’s Ariake Gymnastics Centre. Fellow American Jade Carey placed eighth, scoring 54.199.

“With her win, Lee, the first Hmong American to make a U.S. Olympic Team, becomes the fifth American woman to win the Olympic all-around title in the past five tries. Combining the Olympics and world championships, a U.S. woman has now won every global all-around title since 2011.”

Memories of Hmong American agriculture

Sunisa Lee’s gold medal in the 2020 Tokyo Summer Olympic Games reminded me of this: Though little known, Hmong American agriculture — much of it near Fresno — has long helped make California prosperous. (More than a third of the nation’s vegetables and two-thirds of our fruits and nuts are grown in California). I remember that California’s Gold with Huell Howser, a favorite program, once highlighted this.