and pursuing his own art career. In fact, next month his own mother's art will be featured at The Metro Galleries beginning on First Friday, February 3.
* ... DRESS BARN: The local Dressbarn outlet on Rosedale Highway in the Northwest Promenade is not closing. That's the word from store manager Susan Schwartz who told me the store will be closed for only two months for a complete remodel. She wanted to put rumors that it was closing permanently to rest. "We are simply shutting our doors for two months for a remodel. Our store sales performance and customer service actually ranks in the top 10 percent of the chain. We will be back in business March 19 and I promise we will be one of the prettiest stores in Bakersfield."
* ... OVERHEARD: A woman is telling a friend about a panhandler who stationed himself on a busy off ramp on Highway 178. "I always gave him money until one day he wasn't there, so I turned around and came back through the same spot and saw him getting into a black Lexus and driving away."
* ... SPOTTED: A bumper sticker on an SUV reads "Jesus is with the 99 percent." Guess that leaves out Denver quarterback Tim Tebow, whose $10 million salary certainly qualifies him as a 1 percenter.
* ... GRANTS: Kudos to Mercy and Memorial Hospitals who distributed $227,041 in grants to local nonprofit agencies through the CHW Community Grants Program. Receiving funding were: Alzheimer’s Association - $44,888; CASA - $40,000; Kern Assistive Technology Center - $29,276; Special Olympics - $7,000; Links for Life - $25,000; Mercy Housing California (Madison Place and The Haven) - $19,990; St. Vincent DePaul Stores and Center - $36,000 and the West Side Community Resource Center - $24,888. In addition to this funding, Mercy and Memorial have contributed another $25,000 in grants to local nonprofit agencies through the Sister Phyllis Hughes Endowment and $180,000 in sponsorship of special events for local agencies.
* ... EVENTS: A couple of events that are worth checking out. On Sunday, January 29, the Guild House will be presenting a five-course dinner for $100. Proceeds support the Henrietta Weill Child Guidance Center. Call (661) 834-3566 for reservations. Then on Friday, February 3, the Southern Valley Friends of the National Rifle Association hold its annual dinner and auction at the Bakersfield Elks Lounge. Tickets are $50. Call (661) 205-8569 for details.
* ... BAKERSFIELDISM: From my friend Riley Parker: "Most folks who have lived in Bakersfield for any considerable period of time know that Leo G. Pauly School is located at 313 Planz Road. How many folks know that Leo G. Pauly served as Interim City Marshall from February 4, 1915, until February 28, 1915? This is when you know that you are really a Bakersfield old-timer."