HOME                 8-FEST HISTORY             GUESTBOOK

Daily Recap *Thursday 12/18/2003

Briceland Learning Center Follow Up
By Steve Cohen

One of the goals of the 2003 Left Coast 8-Fest was to give back to the Garberville community in which we held the 8-Fest. As most of you know we were made aware of an alternative school that was working with shoestring funding but more importantly had a wonderful philosophy working with the 16 students in the school.

We auctioned off the #8, 8-Fest poster and raised exactly $3,000 for the school. Since then there have been several exciting donations made to the school.

Ed Raether's daughter and her husband, Jennifer and Ean Houts are both optometrists and have volunteered to go to the school and do in-depth vision testing for all of the children. They will be going up to the BLC sometime after New Years.

Klutz Publishing Company that specializes in children books sent several cases of books from their warehouse. It is 7am, Thursday morning. Greg Arkus, Art Cortez, Len Cacioppo, Justin Eno, Kim Gruenwald, Kyle Grund, Karen Nencini, and myself have gathered at my home outside of Santa Rosa. We have a cup of coffee, pastry and make our plans for the day. We are off to the BLC. The day before FedEx Freight delivered two large pallets weighing 1,370lbs to the BLC after the kids left the school. These pallets contained the following: 16
Compaq 600mhz Pentium III Deskpro PC's with 13gb hard drives and 128mb of memory each 16 matching NEC 17" MultiSync monitors New keyboards, mice, speakers and all new connecting cables Loaded on the computers were Windows 2000 Pro and Office 2000 Pro.

We rendezvoused at the Benbow Inn and were greeted by Debra Stephens and John Porter.  A delightful breakfast brought back many memories of the September 8-Fest. When breakfast was over we headed across 101 to the school. As we drove into the school and parked we could see the kids get up and look out the windows and you could see them saying "the 8s are here!' They had absolutely no idea that we were going to be coming to the school.

We went into the school (Prominent on a wall was the framed 8-Fest poster that had been signed by all the raffle participants) and were greeted by the students with many thanks for our donation of money to the school. They still had no clue as to why we were there. Dave and I went into a back room in which Dave had stored the boxes the previous afternoon. I unpacked a computer and monitor and we carried them into where the kids were working. They went crazy when I suggested that there were 15 more that need to be unpacked.

 The Styrofoam packing was all over the floor. The computers were soon placed on tables with their monitors, speakers, mice and keyboards. 

Meanwhile the networking gurus were measuring lengths of cable runs, making end connections, etc. Art was drilling holes in the walls for cableways when he found that the wall he was working on contained a metal firewall between the false covering walls. Up into the ceiling he went.

When the news came down from the ceiling that there was a King Tuterized mouse in his presence the kids wanted the mouse. We felt that it was best if we left it in peace for posterity (I am sure Posterity will have no use for it).

Patrick Vasco and his friend Helen arrived about noon and were welcomed by the school and the 8-crew. They were planning on staying the weekend upon the North Coast touring the area and Mendocino.

Several hours later, the network was up and running. The last task was to connect an HP printer
(Which Karen Nencini had donated) to the LAN. Now all the students could print through this one printer.

The students came in to the new computer rooms en-mass and thanked us profusely for the gift.  The school's donating computer angels are Lisa and Greg Tessier of CEO Microsystems, Inc.

Evan and Kyle Grund donated the networking cable and switch. Len Cacioppo [A network engineer]and his friend Kim Gruenwald, Justin Eno are network specialists working with Art Cortez [a networking and DSL specialist with SBC] connected all the computers into a complete network for the school with the help of Greg Arkus who is a computer guru.

We then left the school with many hugs and thanks from the students, Katie and Dave. 
We traveled back down to Santa Rosa and had a wonderful prime rib dinner at the Cricklewood Restaurant before we went our separate ways.

What a timely Christmas gift for the student's of the Briceland Learning Center.

The E-31Community is without a doubt the BEST!

Thank you for your love, your caring, your time and
generosity. We HAVE made an impact on many young lives in a very positive manner that will not be forgotten by them or the community.

Related Links:

Briceland Learning Center

09/25/2012 Visit

Related Photos