The Cambrian

In Brief: Highway 1 accident snarled traffic; State Parks commission to meet here; Scarecrow workshops begin Wednesday

Highway 1 accident snarled traffic

A single-car accident snarled Highway 1 traffic for miles near Cambria and Harmony for about 90 minutes Thursday, July 1, triggering a Sig-Alert that was in effect until about 5:30 p.m.

Traffic on Highway 1 was blocked in both directions, and on Highway 46 westbound. Some drivers diverted to other highways and Santa Rosa Creek Road. The narrow rural road was reportedly packed with cars.

According to CHP reports, Terry Dennison, 58, of Big Sur was driving his green Geo Prism north on Highway 1, then collided with a tree just north of the Highway 46 intersection, then bounced back onto the traffic lane.

Firefighters used the Jaws of Life to extricate Dennison from the wreckage. He reportedly had a broken hip and femur and other injuries and was taken to Twin Cities Hospital by ambulance.

Dennison was arrested for driving under the influence, according to CHP records.

—Kathe Tanner

State commission to meet here

When state Parks and Recreation Commission members meet in Cambria Aug. 16 and 17, they could approve converting a marine conservation area off Cambria into State Park’s first marine park.

They’d be following recommendations from a sparsely attended June 30 meeting here.

There were no surprises at the State Parks gathering, but a couple of agency representatives cleared up some confusion about the need to reclassify that section of the ocean as a marine park and rename it accordingly.

If the commission approves, the area from the bottom of Fiscalini Ranch Preserve to Pico Point would be renamed Cambria State Marine Park, becoming the first marine area officially classified by State Parks as a marine park.

Officials said State Parks might have to negotiate access agreements for adjacent land areas not owned by State Parks, such as the preserve or the county’s Shamel Park.

David Schaub, acting chief of the State Parks’ Natural Resources Division, said the parks commission is likely to take responsibility later for the state’s other marine parks, currently under the auspices of California Department of Fish and Game or local governments.

If a marine area is one of the state’s parks, then State Parks should manage that area, he said. And while the public understands the concept of marine parks, few people “really know what a conservation area means.”

Environmental scientist Kevin Fleming said a marine conservation area is “geared more toward protecting resources.” A state marine park focuses on public use, enjoyment and education, along with spiritual, scientific and educational opportunities, but also “restricts any such use that would compromise protection of the natural or cultural resources or recreational features.”

Commercial fishing still would be banned in the Cambria State Marine Park; recreational fishing and other recreational uses would be allowed.

The representatives stressed that the same agencies would still enforce the laws, with Fish and Game wardens taking primary responsibility on the sea, parks rangers doing so on land and the turf would be shared in the surf line and near-shore areas.

—Kathe Tanner

Scarecrow workshops begin Wednesday

A series of workshops begins Wednesday, July 14, leading to a community-wide scarecrow exhibition in October.

The Cambria Historical Society hopes its second annual Scarecrow & Harvest Festival brings scarecrows and tourists to all parts of Main Street on Oct. 9 and 10.

Anyone can enter a scarecrow of their making. The “Scarecrow Challenge Contest” is open to all — families, clubs, schools, businesses, artists, everyone.

To give them a leg up — and maybe a torso, too — prospective participants are invited to attend free scarecrow-making workshops at the Cambria Historical Museum beginning Wednesay, July 14. Registation is required; call 927-2891.

Other workshops are set for July 22, Aug. 11 and Aug. 19. All are from 10 a.m. to noon.

Go to cambriascarecrows.comfor more about the workshop schedule.

—Bert Etling

Coastal Discovery Fair coming July 17

The free Coastal Discovery Fair is to be held from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, July 17, at William Randolph Hearst Memorial Beach in San Simeon, across Highway 1 from the entrance to Hearst Castle.

The annual fair, which highlights the connection of land and sea, features family fun and kid-friendly educational activities from Zoo to You, Too Slo Turtles, Sammy the Steelhead and making and testing underwater robot vehicles.

Exhibitors are to offer environmentally oriented games, displays, information and activities hosted by the Coastal Discovery Center, Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary and California State Parks.

Boni’s will offer food for sale. Raffle tickets are available in advance from the Cambria Chamber of Commerce, 767 Main St. For details, call the center at 927-6575. —Kathe Tanner

Wright named top Girls State ‘Citizen’

Cambria’s Sarah Wright returned from last week’s Girls State at Claremont College with lots to smile about.

Girls State was founded 67 years ago by the American Legion to provide young women with the opportunity to learn the practical process of self-government and good citizenship as practiced in a democratic society.

At the end of their stay, the girls chose the “Outstanding Citizen” of their city and state. Out of 500 girls attending the event, Wright was named “Outstanding Citizen” of both her city and the entire state, earning a $1,000 scholarship.

— John Brannon