Golf gettin’ better

Progress continues on the renovations at the YLP Golf Course: tree trimming, reconstruction of sand traps and tees. The recent rains have filled the lakes, and the well that is being drilled in the golf course parking lot will add to the water supply for all of YLGA.
Play continues to increase, through afternoon specials, advertising and word of mouth that we are open to the public.
We also are looking forward to hosting the Yosemite High School Boy’s Golf Team on Monday, Feb. 21. There will be 36 players from six different high schools participating. Come on out and watch these young stars of the future!
I encourage homeowners to come out and see what all the excitement is about, and to enjoy one of the best amenities that we have here at YLP.

Trail Trials

The YLPEC hosted our first-ever Trail Trials on January 27.  We had an excellent turnout with approximately 30 horse and rider combinations.  It was such a success that we are hosting another Trail Trials event on Feb. 24 (weather permitting).

We ended up breaking it out into three categories: Novice (never to have competed in a Trail Trial event), Intermediate and Open (advanced).  Our largest class was the Novice.  We will have the same breakdown at the next event, but the obstacles will be different.  We had participants come from as far as Three Rivers and Hanford.  We hope to have an even larger turn out on Feb. 24!
I enjoyed watching everyone have fun and to see the Equestrian Center offer something new.  Karen Kroske, a longtime supporter of the Equestrian Center, volunteered to organize the event.  We appreciate her efforts as well as the efforts and time donated by our volunteers.  We were able to keep the event running smoothly because we had six judges so that six horses could participate at one time.
For information about the event, please contact Karen Kroske at 341-4764 or you can email me at equestriancenter@yloa.org.
Here are some photos of the event:

An eye-opening Town Hall

From YLOA-YSPUC General Manager Jonathan Penrose:

We had a great turnout for our Town Hall on January 22nd, with about 80 people joining us for dinner and about 100 in attendance for the meeting. I presented a financial comparison of YLOA to 3 other associations that are similar to ours in geography, demographics, size and budget (Bear Valley Springs, Lake of the Pines and Pine Mountain Lake).

The good news is that we are much more efficient in operating our amenities. However, we also invest significantly less in maintenance, roads and reserves.

Our next Town Hall will be on Tuesday, February 26th where we will talk further about reserves and how to prioritize our maintenance projects and infrastructure updates.





Mustang Matt Clinic

Last weekend we hosted the Mustang Matt Clinic for the Back Country Horsemen, Sierra Free Packers.  Mustang Matt is a horse trainer from Montana who trains a lot of wild mustangs but will work with any breed.  His philosophy for training is “Trust and Respect.”

We had a wonderful turn out for the clinic — in addition to nine horse owners who signed up for the clinic, we had 30 auditors.
I had the privilege of being able to participate with my horse.  The change I saw in my young mare was incredible.  I love to ride but doing ground work with my horse was never something I really learned to do.  My older horse who will be 18 this year came with some great ground manners and I have had her almost 15 years, so whatever I learned before that had become a bit rusty.  
Matt’s focus wasn’t just ground manners, he also taught on how to safely stop if you get in a bad situation and need your horse to stop immediately.  Another great tool he taught was how to calm a horse down and to keep their focus on what their rider is asking.  Everyone who was able to participate and watch is now a better horse person, if they apply the tools he provided.

Yosemite Plaza gets under way

Hershel Noonkester stands with some of the heavy equipment at the Yosemite Plaza site.

After years of ground preparation, a long-planned business venture is about to begin at the corner of US-41 and Yosemite Springs Parkway.

Work is set to begin next week on a service station and 3,000 square-foot convenience store, property owner Hershel Noonkester said during a site visit Tuesday.

He said that project is slated to be completed by June, but other ventures on the 23-acre site should follow.

Noonkester, his wife, Teddy, and their partners, Dennis and Janell Jonathan of Oakhurst, have formed Yosemite Plaza L.L.C. General contractors are B&T Service Station Contractors of Nipomo, CA.

Their plans will bring a Sinclair service station with 12 pumps and a separate area serving diesel customers who have larger vehicles and trailers. Also planned is a 3,000 square-foot mini-mart or convenience store and a United Security Bank drive-through kiosk.

The plans have been in the works for years, getting a boost in 2014 when the Madera County Board of Supervisors approved a general plan amendment and rezoning for the location.

Since then, a lot of bulldozing, rock blasting and other site preparation has gone on to create an area that will accommodate fuel tanks and buildings. Access will be off a drive from Yosemite Springs Parkway and off Highway 41 for southbound traffic.

Noonkester said he bought the property about 20 years ago. “I always thought it would be a good piece of land because there’s no services up here at all, especially at that time. I bought it with the aspirations of doing what I’m doing now.”

He expects work to start Monday with digging for the tanks and preparing footings for the canopy.

Financing will come through a loan from Santa Cruz County Bank, secured by the Small Business Administration, Jonathan said in a phone interview.

The partners said the service station-store part is phase one of their plans, with senior housing and other ventures to follow.

“The whole concept behind Yosemite Plaza is to bring some services locally to the residents” in the area, Jonathan said.

Keep checking YLP Life and yosemitelakespark.org for more coverage as the project progresses.

Signs going up


Bill Green takes a moment Monday to show one of the first new road signs he and his YLOA Roads crew have started to erect in YLP. The signs on this intersection include a new stop sign facing uphill on Revis Road.

Actions taken Jan. 15

Highlights of the Jan. 15 YLOA and YSPUC board meetings

The YLOA Board of Directors voted to approve these recommendations from the Finance Committee:

• The board treasurer and one director review documents and statements as required by a new state law AB2912, which is intended “to protect the owners in a common interest development from fraudulent activity by those entrusted with the management of the association’s finances.”

• Change the YLOA fiscal year from June 1 through May 31 to July 1 through June 30 beginning July 1, 2019. In addition, amend the Articles of Incorporation to reflect the new fiscal year timeline. Rationale:
— This move will align our revenue stream with our assessment schedule.
— According to the IRS, a fiscal year should coincide with the organization’s natural operating cycle which this move does provide.
— The schedule for collection of assessments will not change.
— This change of Fiscal Year brings our election process, annual budget and policy disclosures in compliance with Civil Codes 5300 and 5310.

• Approve the Yosemite Lakes Owners’ Association Financial Statements and Supplemental Information Year End May 31, 2018.

• Approve transfers of funds according to terms of Civil Code 5502, with any transfer over $10,000 requiring written board approval.

The board also:

• Approved Ladies of the Lakes’ activity calendar for 2019 to use YLP facilities free of charge.

• Authorized the general manager to go ahead with replacing the broken air conditioning system for the Yosemite Grill at a projected cost of $9,500. Two new units to be installed are much more efficient. The money will come from reserves.

• Directed that staff implement live Internet streaming of monthly board meetings by the end of the current fiscal year.

• Directed that staff offer videos of board meetings in a public area of yosemitelakespark.org within three days of each meeting.

Also at the meeting, Jack Fulcher was introduced as the new captain of Madera County Fire Station No. 10 in YLP.

For more details of the meeting including the General Manager’s report, check our public documents below and sign up for our weekly email newsletter YLP Live at right.


Don’t miss fire safety seminar

Topics will include:
Fire Behavior
Defensible Space
Preparing you Home for Fire Season
Evacuation Preparedness
Fire Safety in the Home
Community Involvement
Questions and Answers

Presented by Natasha Fouts-Noble, CalFire Defensible Space Inspector

Keeping our water flowing

Click the photo to begin the slideshow

Ken Sartain
YLOA Director

As your newly elected board member and vice president of the YSPUC, I have been learning all I can about how our water system functions and the challenges our capable staff face on a daily basis.

Many of us have experienced this scenario: Turn on the tap….no water. What happened? With increasing frequency our aging water system will fail, causing water outages. These outages are not only inconvenient for YLP homeowners but also costly to repair. And many times they will happen at the most inconvenient time.

On Friday, Dec. 28, at about 3 p.m., I gained first hand insight into a mainline pipe failure response. The location was East Lilley Mountain Way. When I got there, the crew was already onsite, headed by our water department manager, Ken Harrington. The area of the failure had been valved off and the backhoe tractor had begun its work digging out the failed 24-foot section of pipe.

Since this is a high-pressure area, parts of the roadway had been severely undermined and caved-in from being washed out by water gushing from the underground pipe breach.

Over the course of several hours, I stayed there to watch the repair process in action. I want to share that experience with you through a series of photos I took. I’ve captioned each one to explain what’s going on and who’s doing the work.

Keep in mind that the working conditions for this break were on the favorable side. It wasn’t raining, snowing, pouring down rain, freezing cold or blazing hot, or in the middle of the night on a weekend or holiday.

Any of these scenarios could have happened and they HAVE happened but it has never kept our faithful crews from showing up and getting the job done!

Ken Sartain is also a member of the YLOA Engineering Committee and chair of the Communications Committee.

Debunking thrush remedies

I love winter and I love the rain!  This is my favorite time of year for many reasons but winter does have a downside when it comes to my horses.  Between the unsafe riding conditions the rain can cause, my supposed-to-be-gray horses who are now various shades of mud and fighting off thrush in my horse’s feet, it really puts a damper on my favorite time of year.

Many of us who have horses are familiar with thrush, but for those of you who are not, it is a fungal infection in horse’s hooves caused by too much moisture.  It is treatable but can cause more serious issues if not treated.  I have heard of a lot of home remedies for thrush, but the medications available for purchase can be a bit pricey.  I found this great article that debunks a lot of the home remedies for thrush that cause more harm than good.