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Thanksgiving came a week early for 50 seniors from St. Helena and Calistoga who enjoyed Tuesday’s annual Thanksgiving luncheon put on by Rianda House, the Junior Women and the Federated Women. John Sorensen delivered some turkeys he’d roasted on his special turkey rotisserie, the Junior Women cooked side dishes, and the Federated Women baked pies. To my great regret, I missed the party.

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Adventist Health St. Helena is organizing its second annual Thanksgiving Day Turkey Trot, with registration starting at 8:30 a.m. Thursday, Nov. 28, at the Carnegie Building. You may choose between a 2.75-mile run or a 1.25-mile walk. Strollers and “polite dogs on leashes” (as the hospital charmingly puts it) are welcome. The official name, the AHEAD Turkey Trot, refers to Adventist Health Early All-Around Detection, the hospital’s hereditary cancer screening program.

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Vocal Color’s rescheduled concert will be at 4 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 21, at the Carnegie Building. The local a cappella group had to postpone its last show because of fire-related chaos, but the show must go on – at least eventually. Be sure to RSVP to Rianda House at 963-8555. Donations are appreciated.

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Attention, Civil War buffs. Historian Jay Greene will recount one of the most unique and historically significant engagements of the war – the Battle of the Ironclads – at 5 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 26, at the St. Helena Public Library. The Confederacy rebuilt the steam frigate Merrimack as an ironclad, rechristened her the CSS Virginia, and tried to use her to break the Union blockade at Hampton Roads. The Union countered with its own ironclad, the USS Monitor. The ensuing battle opened a new chapter in the history of warfare and presaged the 20th-century clashes between heavily armored warships.

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What a lovely idea in a time of rabid partisanship. Pastors from six local churches are collaborating on an ecumenical Thanksgiving eve worship service at 6 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 27, at the First Presbyterian Church of St. Helena, 1428 Spring St. Join members of the Assemblies of God, Catholics, Episcopalians, Methodists, Presbyterians and Seventh-day Adventists to celebrate God’s grace. An offering will benefit the St. Helena Food Pantry.

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Huzzahs to Liana Kelperis Oliveira, a St. Helena native and former third-grade teacher who’s been promoted to assistant principal at the Escola Americana in Rio de Janeiro. My best wishes to her and the rest of the Kelperis family, who are all very nice people.

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Now, about the city’s new water billing cycle. The short version is that starting in January the city is switching back to a bi-monthly billing cycle in which we will be billed every two months instead of every month. The long version is that Nov. 9-Dec. 8 will be the last full monthly billing cycle, followed by a partial bill issued in mid-January for the Dec. 9-Dec. 31 cycle, followed by the first bi-monthly bill in mid-March covering Jan. 1-Feb. 29. If the whole thing makes your head spin and you just want to pay your bill with minimal fuss, the city is giving you until Jan. 15 to opt into an autopay Level Pay Plan. Questions? Call 968-3745 or email water@cityofsthelena.org.

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I hear Tamber Bey in Calistoga is offering a custom wine label program where you can have a bottle of their wine adorned with a label of your choice. I’m imagining the possibilities. A self-shot photo of my own grinning mug? Never. An “Aunt Helena Blend” with psychedelic fonts and color schemes reminiscent of an old Grateful Dead poster? Intriguing, but no. A snapshot of my trusty Schwinn? Maybe. A lovely cat? Ah, now we’re getting somewhere.

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