County Roundup

Water meters installed

Los Osos

S&T Mutual Water Co., a small water purveyor in Los Osos, has installed water meters for its 198 customers in advance of the Los Osos sewer project.

For 50 years, the water company did not use meters, charging a flat rate of $27 a month instead, said Frank Freiler, water company board member. However, meters will be necessary for billing purposes when the new sewer system comes on line in about three years.

“Everyone cooperated fully to get this thing done way ahead of schedule,” Freiler said. “It was pretty seamless.”

Developed lots were charged $900 for the meters while undeveloped lots were billed $1,850. S&T Mutual is one of three water purveyors in Los Osos and serves the Sunset Terrace area around Sea Pines Golf Course.

The meters will allow the company to start charging its customers based on the amount of water used, rather than the flat rate.

— David Sneed

Scripts donated to Shandon High thespians


Earlier this month, Shandon High School’s tiny theater program got a big donation from the historic Pasadena Playhouse.

Playhouse archivist Ellen Bailey presented the Shandon school with more than 200 scripts.

“We’re constantly looking for scripts,” said Shandon High drama teacher John Carroll, noting that budding thespians use them for auditions and scene studies. “This is a really great gift.”

Carroll has been taking students on theater tours of Southern California for about a decade. Two weeks ago, he visited the Pasadena Playhouse, the California Institute of the Arts in Santa Clarita and Citrus College in Glendora with eight of his 12 drama students, who paid their own way. “It’s important for the kids to experience real professional theater,” Carroll said, describing the Playhouse as “a great theater training ground.”

Established in 1917 as the Community Playhouse Association of Pasadena, the Pasadena Community Playhouse rose to national prominence in the 1920s with the premieres of plays by Noel Coward, Tennessee Williams and Eugene O’Neill.

In 1937, the state legislature designated the Playhouse as the State Theater of California.

Pasadena Playhouse alumni include Gene Hackman, Dustin Hoffman and Sally Struthers. Shandon High School now owns a piece of that legacy: three plastic bags and two cardboard boxes filled with scripts dating as far back as the late 1800s. “Most of them (are) still being performed by theaters today around the world,” Carroll said.

— Sarah Linn

Paso recycles Christmas trees

Paso Robles

The city of Paso Robles will recycle Christmas trees for free next week. The trees must be bare, meaning free of flocking, tinsel and ornaments. Stands will not be accepted.

The chipping area will be open for drop-offs from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. beginning Monday at Fourth and Pine streets. Enter through the south gate.

The public can then pick up free mulch from the trees at the same site from Jan. 9 through Jan. 13.

The mulch is available on a first-come, first-served basis by appointment only.

Recipients are responsible for loading and hauling.

Those interested don’t need to drop off a tree in order to get the mulch, according to the city. To reserve a pickup time, call 237-3873 or 237-3861.

— Tonya Strickland