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Jeff Aiello, featured speaker at upcoming Sierra Vista Scenic Byway annual membership meeting.

Jeff Aiello to Speak at Sierra Vista Scenic Byway Annual Membership Meeting

NORTH FORK — Hot on the heels of a successful tour of some areas of the Sierra Vista Scenic Byway to view damage and results of the Creek Fire, the Sierra Vista Scenic Byway holds its annual membership meeting at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 10, at the North Fork Town Hall, 33060 Road 228, North Fork.

A short business meeting precedes the presentation of the evening’s speaker, Jeff Aiello. Jeff is currently the CEO of Valley PBS and the producer of the documentary, Afterburn: The Creek Fire Documentary, now available for viewing through PBS as well as YouTube.

After being bombarded with tons of questions on his personal page during the Creek Fire, he and wife Jill Blevins Aiello created a new Facebook group called Talk of the Hill to specifically address the masses of inquiries plus provide authoritative resources for information on fires and other emergency occurrences in our area — and beyond.

Light refreshments will be offered.

Mike Smith (right) and Doug Waltner lead the Creek Fire Tour. Photo courtesy of Judy DeRosa.

Approximately 25 people attended the Scenic Byway tour, Saturday, Oct. 16, and led by retired USFS Division Chief of the Bass Lake Ranger District Mark Smith . He discussed how and why the fire started and how it progressed as it did. The tour afforded participants the opportunity to assess what can be done to restore normalcy — as much as possible — to the burned area.

A lone picnic table remains at Mile High Overlook after the Creek Fire. Photo courtesy of Judy DeRosa.

The Sierra Vista Scenic Byway Association membership is an affordable way to lend support to one of our region’s major resources. Individual memberships are available at $10 per person with family memberships priced at $15. Donations to the Byway, both monetary and labor, are always needed and welcomed.

Much work is to be done, especially to areas such as the Nelder Grove of Giant Sequoias, which has suffered major damage as a result of the Railroad Fire in 2017 as well as the windstorm that impacted so much of the mountain area in January 2021.

Do you have special skills and equipment that you can lend? Do you have time on your hands to donate? Contact Doug Waltner at dwaltner@netptc.net to offer up what you can when you can to preserve this precious resource.

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