* ... SCRIVNER FUND RAISER: The first event at the new Padre was a fund raiser for Zack Scrivner, the Republican city councilman who is running for county supervisor. I'm told the Padre was a huge hit as the supporters gathered on the main lobby floor, munched hors d'ouerves and gazed at the tiled lobby and new trimmings. One of those attending was Don Martin, owner of Metro Galleries, who was particularly impressed with the Padre lighting. "Lights embedded in floors shine up on the columns that have been restored," he said. "All the furniture is custom made for the hotel, along with the art and wallpaper." All the local Republican big-wigs (and others) were there, including Rep. Kevin McCarthy and former Congressman Bill Thomas, as well as Assemblywoman Jean Fuller. Also attending were Karen Dewalt, Jan Bans, Jacquie Sullivan and David Couch among others. (photo courtesy of Don Martin)
* ... STIMULUS MONEY: A Bakersfield-based company has landed a $1.6 million contract to fund emergency drought relief for affected agricultural areas of California. That's the word from the Bureau of Reclamation (part of the Department of Interior) who said Western Oilfields Supply Co. of Bakersfield would supply pumps, valves, flow meters and piping to "increase the flexibility of limited water supplies for helping maintain production of trees and vines." The contract comes from the American recovery and Reinvestment Act, part of President Obama's overall stimulus package.
* ... B-TOWN NOT BAKO: Karene R. Williams sent me an email saying she lived in Bakersfield from 1955 to 1973 and was in the first graduating class from South High School. She now lives in Lake Isabella. Her family has always referred to Bakersfield as "B-town," not Bako.