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There's always something fun to do with great events in California's Gateway to Yosemite.  To see what's going on, visit our Calendar of Events

For news and information about what's going on, visit our Press Room. For other news including the latest specials and promotions, visit our Specials Page    or check out the Newsletter Archive. You can sign up for our Newsletter List and we'll send your our monthly mailing with the latest events, news and discounts. For up-to-date information on Yosemite, check out the Daily Report below, straight from the National Park Service. (We promise not to share your information with anyone else.)


Daily Report - Yosemite National Park

Friday, April 18, 2014


WEATHER

 

Yosemite Valley

Today: A 30 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms after 11am. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 75. West southwest wind 5 to 10 mph.

Tonight: A slight chance of showers and thunderstorms before 8pm, then a slight chance of showers between 8pm and 11pm. Partly cloudy, with a low around 47. West wind 5 to 10 mph becoming north northeast after midnight. Chance of precipitation is 20%.

Saturday: A slight chance of showers between 11am and 2pm, then a slight chance of showers and thunderstorms after 2pm. Mostly sunny, with a high near 76. North northeast wind 5 to 10 mph becoming west in the morning. Chance of precipitation is 20%.

Saturday: Night Partly cloudy, with a low around 48. West wind around 5 mph becoming east northeast in the evening.

Sunday: Mostly sunny, with a high near 80. East northeast wind 5 to 10 mph becoming west in the morning.

Sunday Night: Partly cloudy, with a low around 48. West wind 5 to 10 mph becoming east in the evening.

 

El Portal

Today: A 20 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms after 11am. Mostly sunny, with a high near 78. Light and variable wind becoming west southwest 5 to 10 mph in the afternoon.

Tonight: Partly cloudy, with a low around 51. West wind 5 to 10 mph becoming east northeast after midnight.

Saturday: Sunny, with a high near 80. Northeast wind 5 to 10 mph becoming west in the morning.

Saturday Night: Mostly clear, with a low around 51. West wind around 5 mph becoming east northeast in the evening.

Sunday: Mostly sunny, with a high near 84. East northeast wind 5 to 10 mph becoming west in the morning.

Sunday Night: Partly cloudy, with a low around 51. West wind 5 to 10 mph becoming east northeast in the evening.

 

Wawona

Today: A 20 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms after 11am. Mostly sunny, with a high near 70. West southwest wind 5 to 10 mph, with gusts as high as 15 mph.

Tonight: Partly cloudy, with a low around 45. West wind 5 to 10 mph becoming light and variable in the evening. Winds could gust as high as 15 mph.

Saturday: Mostly sunny, with a high near 70. North northeast wind 5 to 10 mph becoming west in the morning.

Saturday Night: Partly cloudy, with a low around 46. West northwest wind 5 to 10 mph becoming east northeast in the evening.

Sunday: Mostly sunny, with a high near 73. East northeast wind 5 to 10 mph becoming west southwest in the morning.

Sunday Night: Partly cloudy, with a low around 48. West wind 5 to 10 mph becoming east in the evening.


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NEW AND HAPPENING TODAY

 

 

DNC Seasonal Openings

Housekeeping Camp and the Housekeeping Camp Store are both open as of Thursday, April 17th. Store hours are 8 am to 6 pm.

The Glacier Point Tour and the Grand Tour are now being offered daily. The Village Store Tour & Activity Desk is also open. Please note that all tours depart from Yosemite Lodge. Tickets can be purchased at the Yosemite Lodge and Village tour desks.

The Curry Village Bike Stand is also open for the season. Hours of operation is from 9:00 am - 6:00 pm. The last bike rental will go out at 4:45 pm and all bikes in by 5:45 pm.

 

Early Opening for Rafting

Curry Village Raft Rentals will open for operation on Saturday, April 19th. It will be open until Monday, April 28th for Easter week visitors, then for weekends only (Fri - Mon) until Monday, May 12th. Full operation (7 days a week) will begin Friday, May 16th for as long as conditions permit. Raft rentals are available 10 am - 4 pm, river and weather permitting. Please call the raft stand at 209-372-8319 for questions. (E. Callahan)

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Yosemite Theater Update
Next shows are Friday and Saturday April 25 and 26 with renowned Yosemite climber Ron Kauk’s “Return to Balance, A Climber’s Journey”, followed by Tuesday  April 29 first show of the season for park ranger John Dill’s “Yosemite Search and Rescue”.  The Yosemite Conservancy’s theater season really gets underway with 6 night a week in May then 7 nights a week in June, stay tuned for details. And remember that ALL theater shows are free to employees and volunteers ALL year long dependent on seat availability. (C. Botell)

 

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RECENT NEWS

 

 

 

Prescribed Fire Scheduled in Yosemite National Park - news release

Burn proposed for the week of April 28th near Bishop Creek

Scott Gediman 209-37-0248

David Miyako 209-372-0529

 

Yosemite National Park is planning a 1,447 acre prescribed fire in the southwestern portion of the park near Yosemite West. The burn is projected to start the week of April 28, depending upon weather conditions. Ignition will take approximately five days with active burning, and about two weeks to monitor burn down activity. The Wawona Road will remain open during the burn, however, traffic control may be instituted if conditions require. Firefighters, fire equipment, smoke and debris may be present on the roadway.

 

The primary objective of this prescribed fire is to treat hazardous vegetation and fuels (brush and other flammable material) adjacent to the Wildland Urban Interface community of Yosemite West. The burn area is east of the Wawona Road along Highway 41. This burn would protect the area from wildfires that start above the community of Yosemite West. Conducting this prescribed fire would also allow the area to function as a fire hardened buffer for future wildfires, and to anchor additional prescribed fires surrounding the community. This prescribed fire is designed to reduce surface fuels and ladder fuels. Heavy understory ladder fuels allow surface fires to spread from the ground to tree canopies creating undesirable crown fires, which are fires in the tops of trees. Once the area is treated and maintained, this area will offer a fuel break for firefighters to safely protect the area east of Yosemite West from future wildfires.

 

Conducting this prescribed burn in April will allow the park to protect the community of Yosemite West during this dry year. Typically, fuels in this area would be too wet to burn in April, but the drought makes this month an ideal time for prescribed fire. Taking advantage of this early dry season will allow the park to clear fuels that may pose a threat if left untreated.

 

The park has submitted a smoke management plan to the Mariposa County Air Pollution Control District (APCD), and will obtain a burn permit prior to burning. The prescribed fire window will be determined in collaboration with surrounding air pollution control districts to find the best opportunity for smoke to disperse from populated areas. Smoke monitors will be deployed in smoke sensitive communities to monitor air quality. The California Air Resources Board, Tuolumne, San Joaquin, and Great Basin APCDs have been notified of the burn.

 

Fifty lightning ignitions have been suppressed in this area since 1930. This historical fire suppression effort has put the community of Yosemite West at risk for larger wildfires. Prescribed fire mimics the effects of wildfire (reducing surface and ladder fuels) under environmental conditions the fire managers prescribe to meet life and property protection objectives and to reduce safety risks. (D. Miyako)

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Annual Fire Refresher

For everyone that was planning on attending the annual fire refresher with Bernard Spielman the date has changed from Friday May 23rd to Wednesday May 21st 9:00-4:30. The location will remain at Cedar Lodge. Russell Mitchell and Aaron Ludwig will be teaching the class so if you have any questions please feel free to contact them at 379-1903 or 379-1080, or email. (R. Mitchell)

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NPS Outside Work/Activities

Federal Ethics regulations state that the Federal government is our primary employer. DOI regulations require all employees to seek prior, written ethics approval to engage in outside work or activities (paid or unpaid) with a prohibited source. Prohibited sources include any person or entity:

-  Doing business with/seeking to do business with the National Park Service (NPS),

-  Is regulated by the NPS,

-  Seeks to influence the NPS,

-  Professional, technical or trade associations, the majority of whose members represent prohibited sources, or

-  That believes it could benefit from the performance or nonperformance of your official duties.

 

If you are contemplating engaging in outside work/activity with a prohibited source - paid or unpaid - you will need to have prior, written approval to do so.  Local examples of prohibited sources include, but are not limited to, Delaware North Companies, the Ansel Adams Gallery, the Yosemite Conservancy, Nature Bridge, the Yosemite Employee Association, the El Portal Town Planning Committee and the Yosemite Child Care Centers.

 

To obtain ethics review and approval, you will need to complete and submit a Request for Ethics Approval to Engage in Outside Work or Activity Form, attached.  It may also be found on the Ethics and Employee Behavior SharePoint site under Shared Documents. If you currently are engaging in outside work or activity with a prohibited source, you will also need to complete the form and receive written ethics approval.  If this is your situation, please submit your forms as soon as possible. Should you have any questions about this or any other ethics issues, please feel free to contact me. (T. Hawkins)

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Annual Easter Egg Hunt

The Yosemite Lions club is excited to be continuing the tradition of The Annual Community Easter Egg Hunt, Saturday, April 19, at the Yosemite Valley School baseball field.  The hunt begins at 10:00 a.m.  The finders of the Golden Egg will get a bike! (B. Archer)

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Sierra Foothill Conservancy and Upper Merced River Watershed Events

The Upper Merced River Watershed Council is excited to host Bridget Fithian on Thursday April 17 as part of the Council's educational speaker series program. Fithian, who was raised in Mariposa, is the Conservation Director at the Mariposa branch of Sierra Foothill Conservancy.  Her program, titled "Local land conservation: Birds Bees and Cows", will focus on the Conservancy's work with local landowners and the types of different land conservation projects the conservancy is involved with. In particular, she will also discuss conservation easements and the Williamson Act. UMRWC is excited to host Fithian and help expose landowners and other stakeholders to these land managment options, and the great work of this local nonprofit. Please join us Thursday, April 17 in the Board of supervisors chambers at 5100 Bullion St.

 

Upcoming Hikes:

April 19 - Sierra Foothill Conservancy Annual Earth Day Striped Rock Hike

Join Bill Downey for a climb on this scenic landmark. The end of the hike is steep and there’s a section of rock scrambling, but the view is spectacular. Meet at the Mariposa County Fairgrounds off of Highway 49 at 9am. http://events.constantcontact.com/register/event?llr=xe4zfycab&oeidk=a07e832gqrm5b70fcc0

 

April 26 - Birding Stockton Creek

Join Karyn “Kestrel” O’Hearn, Sierra Foothill Conservancy and Yosemite Area Audobon for the monthly birding walk on the Stockton Creek Preserve.  Catch the spring birds on the reservoir.  Meet at the Highway 140N entrance to the preserve.http://events.constantcontact.com/register/event?llr=xe4zfycab&oeidk=a07e8ieczzh33232c66 (M. Snyder)

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Yosemite Conservancy Bookstore Openings

The Yosemite Conservancy bookstores located in the Wawona Visitor Center at Hill’s Studio and the Big Oak Flat information Station are now open for the season. Both stores are open daily 9AM – 5PM. (R. Gibbons)

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Seasonal Orientation - It's Not Just for Employees!

Are you a supervisor who supervises volunteers or interns? Did you know that you can send your volunteer or intern to Parkwide Seasonal Orientation?   .

The first Orientation will take place this Monday and Tuesday, April 21 and 22 (Payperiod 10).  All volunteers and interns are invited to attend. If your volunteer staff can not make it to this one, there is another orientation on May 5 and 6 (Payperiod 11) and the first Monday and Tuesday of subsequent payperiods until early July. 

 

Volunteers and interns can join Volunteer Coordinator Bobbie Visnovske on Monday April 21 from 9a-11a at the Volunteer Offices in the Warehouse Complex in El Portal.  Topic will be volunteer specific and will cover everything volunteers need to know in order to be successful this season!  After orientation and a lunch break (volunteers should bring a lunch or drive 5 minutes to the El Portal Market), volunteers will fold into the ongoing employee orientation and  join seasonal staff at 12 noon in learning all about Yosemite, including the park's mission and safety message. The following day, orientation continues at 8am at the Yosemite Valley Auditorium with an overview of park operations and a fun Valley Floor Tram Tour. Why not give your volunteer/intern the best start to a great season? Questions? Call Bobbie at 379-1850. (B. Visnovske) 

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Yosemite National Park announces Availability of the Ansel Adams Gallery Complex Rehabilitation - news release

Environmental Assessment for Public Review

Scott Gediman 209-372-0248

David Miyako 209-372-0529

 

Yosemite National Park announces the release of the Ansel Adams Gallery Buildings Rehabilitation Environmental Assessment (EA).  The EA will be available for public review and comment from April 16, 2014 to May 16, 2014. The EA addresses the rehabilitation needs while retaining the historic integrity of the structures.

 

The park’s Preferred Alternative (Alternative 4) rehabilitates the Ansel Adams Gallery Complex using architectural and structural design tailored to improve building performance and retain historic integrity. To implement comprehensive seismic and structural strengthening and energy efficiencies, this alternative would preserve and repair certain historic materials and elements where feasible, and replace others in kind. The Preferred Alternative would provide reasonable accessibility, safety, site circulation, and drainage improvements while retaining the historic materials and features that characterize the property.

 

The Environmental Assessment also evaluates other alternatives including Alternative 2 (Conservation), Alternative 3 (Building Performance), Alternative 4 (Balanced Rehabilitation), and a No Action alternative.

 

A digital copy of the EA is available at http://parkplanning.nps.gov/AnselAdamsEA.

The preferred method for submitting comments is through PEPC at http://parkplanning.nps.gov/AnselAdamsEA. Printed and CD copies of the plan will be available upon request (in limited number) by emailing YOSE_Planning@nps.gov. Comments may also be submitted via postal service and postmarked by May 16, 2014 to: Superintendent, Yosemite National Park, Attn: Ansel Adams EA, PO Box 577, Yosemite, CA 95389. (D. Miyako)

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Certification of Motor Vehicle Operators

Human Resources Bulletin (HRB) 05-04 requires that all government vehicle (GOV) operators, required, regular and incidental, annuallly certify that they have a valid driver's license.To this end, HRB 05-04 requires supervisors to ensure that their employees annually complete the Valid Driving License Self-Certification Form, and attach a photocopy of their driver's license to the form. The completed form serves as certification that the employee has a valid driver's license and that the employee will report any incident involving a GOV and/or "any use of controlled substances, intoxicating beverages or driving impairment resulting from prescription drugs, illness, medical condition or other factors that may impair concentration, motor skills or reaction time in operating a motor vehicle."  Moreover, the employee certifies that she/he will report any such incidents to their supervisors as soon as possible, and not later than the next business day.

 

These forms are to be kept on file with the supervisor of record. GOVs are defined as any vehicle used in the performance of official government business, to include GSA vehicles, Department of the Interior vehicles, leased/rental vehicles and personal vehicles used to conduct official business. GOV operators include employees, volunteers and anyone authorized to use a GOV in the performance of official government business. Accordingly, please ensure that your employees have completed this form and provided you with copies of their driver's licenses.  Additionally, you will need to ensure that all new employees are in compliance with the bulletin requirements as soon as possible upon entrance on duty. Should you have any questions, you may contact me. The HRB 05-04, VAlid Driving License Self-Certification Form and any associated documents will be posted on the HR SharePoint site under Forms. (T. Hawkins)

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Trail Status

Ice Cut is open for the season. Four Mile trail is still closed due to ice on the upper sections. The trail will be reevaluated next week. (K. Kirschner)

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Tioga Road Plowing to Begin

Yosemite Road crew will begin plowing Tioga Road on Wednesday, April 16. To ensure a safe operation no traffic (foot, bike or administrative) will be allowed on the road during scheduled work hours of 0630 to 1700, Monday through Friday.  For access outside of those hours please contact the appropriate District Ranger.  There will be no avalanche requirement as the snow levels are extremely low. (G. Smith)

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Campground Update

Hodgdon Meadow and Wawona Campgrounds (both open year round) have returned to the reservation system as of 4/14/14.  All sites in both campgrounds (including group in both and horse in Wawona) are available by reservation only through the summer months.  They both return to first-come, first-serve status in October.  No other opening dates for any other campgrounds are known at this time. (M. Carter)

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Glacier Point Store Opening

The Glacier Point Store will open for the season, Tuesday, April 15, 2014.  Hours of Operation are 10am - 5pm daily.  The Snack Stand will not open until running water is available. (W. Kearns)

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Yosemite Transportation Subsidy Program: Changing to Meet Customer Needs

A recent analysis of the Transportation Subsidy Program revealed a significant reduction in program participation.  There are multiple reasons for the reduction in program participation and we will work with YARTS and the other authorized vendors to try an alleviate some of the concerns submitted on the recent survey.

 

There is however, one suggestion that was repeated numerous times that we believe can be implemented immediately.  Effective 1 May 2014, individuals can choose to purchase either the Monthly Pass or the 20 Trip Pass offered by YARTS with their Transerve card.  The 20 Trip Pass Booklets contain 20 round trips and expires 90 calendar days from the date of purchase.  We believe the 20 Trip Pass Booklet will be a good fit for those individuals that want to ride the bus but cannot commit to riding 5 days a week.  

 

Look for further changes as we work with authorized vendors to bring you solutions to your commuting needs. (D. St. Vincent)

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Updates from the Superintendent's Office 

The Superintendent's Office welcomes Katie Calder to the office in her new position as an administrative support assistant! Katie has been helping part-time in the office over the past year and a half, and now she will be a full-time staff member assisting with administrative tasks, correspondence, timekeeping, and travel. She'll also be handling all scheduling for Superintendent Neubacher for the next few months. Katie previously worked for Interpretation in the Public Information Office and brings a wealth of Yosemite knowledge, a positive attitude and a great sense of humor to her new position! She can be reached at 372-0496 and at Katie_Calder@nps.gov. Stop by the temporary Admin Building in Res 34 to congratulate and welcome Katie!! 

 

Alan Kunz will be on a temporary promotion as the Program Support Specialist for the Superintendent's Office for the next 5 months while Kristen Kosick is on detail to Grant-Kohrs Ranch National Historic Site. Alan will be the executive assistant to the superintendent and will handle all FOIA requests for the park. 

 

Ashley Mayer is on detail to the Superintendent's Office through mid-July working with the Public Affairs Office. Ashley will be helping with 150th anniversary planning and assisting the public affairs office as they gear up for another busy season! Ashley joins the Superintendent's Office from the Project Management division, where she has been working for the past three years. Ashley is working out of the temporary Admin Building in Res 34 and can be reached at 372-0496. Welcome Ashley! (K. Kosick)

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Yosemite in Pictures by Ryan Alonzo Book Release Party

Come celebrate the newest Yosemite Conservancy publication this Friday, April 14th at 5:30-7:00 pm in the Yosemite Art and Education Center.  Stop by and enjoy a slide show presentation by photographer Ryan Alonzo, a free raffle, snacks, and refreshments! (K. Manion)

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National Public Safety Telecommunicator Week

We take this week to pause and thank our dispatchers for the vital link they provide to public safety. Yosemite Dispatch is covered by 8 full time employees who are providing 24/7 services to all of Yosemite, Lassen Volcanic National Park and Devils Postpile National Monument.  They handle around 76,000 telephone calls and 20,000 some incidents a year.  As the "behind the scenes" personnel of the park, this is a great opportunity to let them know they are appreciated year-round for a job well done. (N. Phillipe)

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For Rent

Furnished 800 sq. ft.  studio apartment and big deck with view of mountains and vineyard; located in Midpines; pool privileges.  $750/month (possible discount for occasional dog sitting).  Available May 1. Call Kathy Chappell 966-7697. (K. Chappell)

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For Rent

Two studio cabins available; furnished.  Located at Midpines Mobile Home Park and Apartments.  6443 Hwy. 140.  $600 per month, plus electric.  $600 deposit.

RV Site; full hook-ups.  $400 mo. + utilities. Call Chuck Flemming at 209 742-4998 or cjf099@gmail.com (Y. Radanovich)

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Glacier Point Road in Yosemite National Park to Open Monday, April 14 at Noon - news release

Road now open for bicyclists

Scott Gediman 209-372-0248

David Miyako 209-372-0529

 

The Glacier Point Road in Yosemite National Park is open to bicyclists. Vault toilets are available; however, there is no running water. Visitors are urged to bike with caution while in the park. The roadway may be wet due to melting snow and wildlife may be present on or near the road.

 

The Glacier Point Road in Yosemite National Park will open for the season for automobile traffic on Monday, April 14, 2014, at 12:00 p.m.  There will be limited visitor services available at Glacier Point. There is no projected opening date for the Bridalveil Creek Campground.

 

National Park Service crews are currently working on clearing the Tioga Road.  There is no anticipated opening date for the Tioga Road. 

 

For up to date, 24 hour road and weather information, please call 209-372-0200. (S. Gediman)

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Anniversary Updates

Yosemite Grant 150th - Upcoming Activities

Now Playing! The Ken Burns documentary, Yosemite: A Gathering of Spirit at the Yosemite Valley Visitor Center Theater. Every hour on the hour, 10 AM to 4 PM every day (first showing on Sunday is Noon).  

Currently through May 3, Yosemite Renaissance Exhibit at the Yosemite Museum Gallery in Yosemite Valley.

Currently through May 4, Valley View: Yosemite Trails, Currents, and Visions exhibit at Stellar Gallery in Oakhurst, CA.

April 19, John Muir Birthday and Yosemite Celebration Hikes in the Angeles National Forest.

Special Showings of Yosemite: A Gathering of Spirit - April 14 in Sky Forest, CA and April 19 at the Evergreen Lodge in Groveland, CA and at Channel Islands National Park.

For more ongoing exhibits and detailed event information visit www.nps.gov/yose/anniversary 

 

Wilderness Act 50th - www.wilderness50th.org

 

NPS 100th - 

Centennial Webchat with Director Jarvis, April 16 at 11am (Pacific), Click this link (http://inside.nps.gov/webchat/) to access the chat just before 11am or to watch the recording later.

More information: www.nps.gov/subjects/centennial or www.nps.gov/calltoaction (B. Whitehead)

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Wilderness First Responder Recertification courses in El Portal August 2013

NatureBridge will two WFR Recertification courses at the El Portal Community Hall August 18-20 and August 22-24. More information and registration instructions can be found on the NatureBridge website at naturebridge.org/wfr. (M. Carr)

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Yosemite Running and Walking Club

Spring is here! Get outside now to enjoy the weather before the heat of summer arrives and it's time to get to the high country. Join our easy group run/walks on Wednesdays at 6 pm in front of the Valley Visitor Center. Meet other Yosemite residents that are interested in a little extra motivation and a sense of community. Perfect for the new wellness incentive program! Everyone will be encouraged to complete only the distance they are prepared for, and hopefully improve each week. Our walkers group is especially active! Bring your stroller, bring your dog, or bring a friend! Contact Brian at treefrog002@gmail.com to be put on an email list or ask any questions. (B. Whitehead)

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Holy Week Chapel Schedule

Maundy Thursday (April 17th) Service: 7:00pm. Good Friday Service (April 18th):12 Noon and 7:00pm. Easter Sunday Services (April 20th): 7:00am Lower Pines Amphitheater, 9:15am Chapel Service, 11:00am Chapel Service. Pastor Brent Moore, 209-372-4831. (F. Moore)

 

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