After months of planning and several delays in opening, a spay-neuter center operated by Berkeley-based group Fix Our Ferals officially cut the ribbon on its space at a former furniture store space at 12226 San Pablo Ave. in Richmond.
The storefront with bright blue awnings, situated between Barrett and Macdonald avenues, was chosen as an affordable and centralized location to serve Contra Costa and Alameda counties.
The grand opening, originally planned for April and then July, was finally held Aug. 12. The site had actually been operating for a couple of weeks before the ribbon-cutting as a trial run to ensure there was adequate staffing.
Fix Our Ferals (fixourferals.org) has sterilized about 13,000 free-roaming felines in Alameda and Contra Costa since its founding in February 1998.
The organization, which consists largely of volunteers but has a staff veterinarian and veterinary technician, had offered high-volume, bimonthly clinics.
"As demand has increased with the public's desire for humane population control, FOF has worked to increase availability of spay-neuter to meet it, but we have realized that only by having our own clinic, focused on the free-roaming cat population, can we replicate our Berkeley success," the organization announced.
The availability of free sterilization minimizes what the group terms "lethal population control" at animal shelters, and the center allows for
The center will also be able to host educational events and workshops, committee and volunteer meetings and fundraising events.
And even with little publicity, "We've had an amazing amount of calls already," said FOF volunteer Judith Giardina.
The organization needs volunteer trappers, transporters, caregivers and scouts.
For more details, contact Rebecca Marsh at email@example.com.
ART CENTER DIRECTOR: The Richmond Art Center completed an extensive search for an executive director, selecting Richard Ambrose, a longtime art administrator and working artist.
An announcement from RAC cites Ambrose, known as Ric, for "his extensive experience in art administration, strategic planning and creative vision."
Ambrose, who is wrapping up his time as executive director of the Pacific Art League in Palo Alto, will formally start his duties Sept. 3.
His experience includes time in Charleston, W.Va., as deputy director of the Avampato Discovery (Sunrise) Museum, and curator of art and director of exhibitions at the Clay Center for the Arts and Sciences.
Ambrose was also a project director at the Lawrence Hall of Science in Berkeley,
The appointment comes as RAC expands outreach to young people with support from the city. Initiatives will include the Arts in Our Schools Program at Helms Middle School in San Pablo and two programs in partnership with the Richmond Library.
"We have a unique opportunity to leverage our historic role as a leader in the Bay Area arts community through new and expanded partnerships, programs and outreach efforts that will ensure access to the arts for all," Ambrose said.
The Richmond Art Center has been bringing arts instruction, programs and exhibits to the community since its founding in 1936.
For more details, visit www.therac.org or call 510-620-6772.
WEST COUNTY NOTES: Contra Costa Civic Theatre in El Cerrito has just concluded a successful run of "West Side Story," calling the musical its "most attended show in the last 28 years."
But the company can't bask in its recent success, and the first work party for its next production is 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday at CCCT, 950 Pomona Ave.
The setting for the next show is again New York, but this time it's Yonkers, N.Y. in 1942.
Volunteers are welcome to help with set-building and other preparations for "Lost in Yonkers," with future work parties from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Aug. 25, Sept. 1 and Sept. 8.
There are also behind-the-scenes roles for people who want to volunteer as ushers, ad sales, lighting and the like during the run of "Lost in Yonkers" from Sept. 21 to Oct. 14. Details: www.ccct.org or 510-524-9132.
Details: www.nps.gov/rori or 510-232-5050.
Among the participants will be county Supervisor John Gioia.
The series continues with Appalachian music by Paul McNees at 2:30 p.m. Sunday, country-western with Jimi James at 2:30 p.m. Wednesday, country artist Paulette ReNee at 2:30 p.m. Thursday, Fiat music students at 6 p.m. Aug. 24 and bluegrass with Manning Music Fiddlers at 2 p.m. Aug. 25.
Seating is limited. To reserve a spot, call 510-758-1122.
Details and an application are online at www.albanyca.org/index.aspx?page=242.
ACADEMIA: Nathan Gill of Albany, a student at College Preparatory School in Oakland, has been awarded a National Merit University of Chicago Scholarship. His probable career field is mathematics/research.
Contact Chris Treadway at 510-262-2784 or firstname.lastname@example.org.