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No time for much preamble this week. My hopelessly spoiled cat is taking a few minutes between naps, leaving my lap temporarily unencumbered and freeing me up to write my weekly missive to you, Dear Readers. Writing my column and having a cat on my lap are two of my favorite past-times, but trying to do both at the same time is ergonomically taxing.

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The St. Helena Historical Society is entering the world of major-league fundraising soirees with “History Becomes Art” from 1-4 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 11, at The Gallery at Brasswood. There will be an art auction with famously bow-tied auctioneer Fritz Hatton, food from Tre Posti, music by the peerless Mike Greensill Duo and, needless to say, plenty of wine. The art is all modeled on historic local photos, and many of the images are striking. The proceeds from the auction will help the historical society raise money for a permanent home. Tickets are $150. For details and a preview of the art, go to historybecomesart.shstory.org.

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The St. Helena Historical Society also has released an updated edition of its 36-page “Discover Historic St. Helena” booklet. The latest one includes historic Main Street buildings from the post office all the way down to Vintage Hall, as well as notable structures on side streets like Spring, Railroad and Oak. The then-and-now photos are a treat for history buffs. I’m told the book was a labor of love for Sue Wood Clark, a historical society boardmember and St. Helena native. Mariam Hansen also contributed to the effort. Copies are available at the St. Helena Chamber of Commerce, many of the featured businesses, and at some local businesses.

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In these politically polarized times, the League of Women Voters of Napa County is a welcome beacon of nonpartisanship. Robyn Orsini sends word of the chapter’s next board meeting at 12:30 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 1, at the Napa Senior Center, Small Annex, 1500 Jefferson St. in Napa. It will be immediately followed at 2 p.m. by a meeting on Local and State Program Planning for 2017-2019, in which members will consider the chapter’s plans for the next few years. Membership is accepted at the door, so feel free to show up.

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RLS Middle School eighth-graders are planning a trip to Washington, D.C., and they could use your help. Market restaurant is sponsoring a “Dine and Donate” during dinner on Wednesday, Feb. 1. All-star teachers Terry Messmer and Jennifer Marinace would greatly appreciate the community’s attendance, donations or contribution of silent auction items. While you’re at Market, order something with French fries just so you can experience the cream-colored condiment they serve right next to the ketchup. Is it mayonnaise? Aioli? Horseradish? Whatever it is, it’s heavenly.

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Attention, please. The Women’s March Napa Valley will be from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 21, in Napa. Participants will march from the parking lot of the Oxbow Public Market to Veterans Memorial Park, where speakers will discuss the movement for women’s rights at 11 a.m. Everyone is welcome.

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For all their esoteric rituals and mysterious regalia, our local Freemasons seem like quite an approachable and accessible bunch. The Masons of Napa Valley Lodge #93 installed new officers on Saturday: Hector Marroquin as Master Elect, Sam Maffei as Senior Warden Elect, and Tim Bailey as Junior Warden Elect. Congratulations to them all. Rumor has it the Lodge is planning to contribute further to the Make A Wish Foundation this year. I’ll let you know when I hear more.

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Hats off to John Pearson of St. Helena for making the Dean’s List at Champlain College in Vermont. John is majoring in broadcast media production, and judging from his GPA for the fall semester he’s quite an accomplished young scholar. Keep it up, John.

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As a postscript, I’ll let you know that I got as far as the League of Women Voters item before my cat insisted on resuming his afternoon nap – not on his heated bed, of course, but back on my lap once again. I consider myself honored.

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