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One of Redding’s great annual traditions is the Rodeo Week Pancake Breakfast. This is Rodeo Week, so that means the Pancake Breakfast is set for 5 to 10 a.m. this Friday, May 20, in the middle of Market Street between Placer and South streets (AKA “Roaring Gulch”).
If the weather is good – and Friday’s forecast is very promising – 10,000 to 11,000 people typically turn out for the hotcakes, sausage, coffee and milk provided by the Asphalt Cowboys.
“It’s the largest outdoor breakfast in the world,” proclaimed Asphalt Cowboys spokesman Jerry Scheller. “I don’t believe there’s anyplace else that can serve 3,000 people an hour for two consecutive hours.”
While the big rush is from about 7 to 9 a.m., when the chow line can reach half an hour long, about 150 people are usually waiting for the first flapjacks, served well before daybreak. Conversely, some of us have been known to linger and grab a second breakfast as the event winds down.
Friday is also the final weekday of the Shasta County Bike Commute Challenge. To mark the day, the Shasta Wheelmen cycling club is buying breakfast for the first 150 cyclists (wearing a helmet!) who ride into Roaring Gulch on Friday morning. A secure bike corral will be located near the intersection of Placer and Market streets.
Proceeds from the Pancake Breakfast offset the costs of the Redding Rodeo Parade, Scheller said. The Asphalt Cowboys provide about $10,000 worth of cash prizes and other awards to parade participants, who pay no entry fees. The parade is scheduled for 10 a.m. on Saturday in downtown Redding.
Despite the recent rainfall, history says we have nothing to worry about later this week.
“We’ve only had rain on the Pancake Breakfast once in the last 30 years,” Scheller said. “God’s smiling on us.”
Advance breakfast tickets on sale at numerous places around Redding cost $3, or wait to buy your ticket on Friday morning for $4. For a complete schedule of Rodeo Week events, visit the Asphalt Cowboys’ website and the Redding Rodeo Association website.
• You win a bicycle! … Actually, Celena Romero, a student at Shasta Lake School, and Annelise Pierce, of Redding, won brand new Treks in an essay contest sponsored by Healthy Shasta, The Bike Shop and Safe Routes to School. I was one of four judges of the student essays, and we did not have an easy time choosing a winner. At least three submissions were worthy of first place. Celena’s essay may not have been the best mechanically, but she definitely convinced us that a bicycle would change her life. She received her new bicycle on Tuesday morning during a broadcast of Shasta Lake School’s student-run Ram TV program. Pierce collected her two-wheeler during a short ceremony this morning on the Sundial Bridge. You’ll enjoy reading Pierce’s essay here and Celena’s essay here.
• Kaboom! … If you’re in east Redding on Wednesday afternoon, May 18, you might hear a blast coming from the vicinity of the airport sometime between 1 and 4 p.m. No worries. It’s only the FBI and the Shasta County Sheriff’s Office bomb squad conducting post-blast investigation training at Redding Drag Strip, next to the airport.
• Slow on 70 … Caltrans has no fewer than three major projects going on Highway 70 between Oroville and Quincy. The newest project involves straightening “Caribou Curve” and widening the paved shoulder east of Belden. Already under way are replacement of Spanish Creek Bridge, located farther east in Plumas County, and repair and rehabilitation of 12 miles of highway between West Branch Bridge and Pulga Bridge in Butte County. Caltrans warns motorists to expect delays of up to 15 minutes at each construction site.
• The prez speaks … Shasta College President Gary Lewis, that is. The soon-to-retire Lewis is scheduled to speak about the college and its future at 6:30 p.m. next Wednesday, May 25, at Millville Grange, 20237 Old 44 Drive in Palo Cedro. Grange members will provide refreshments for the free event. For more information, contact Doug Bennett at (530) 604-0804.
Paul Shigley is senior editor of California Planning & Development Report, a frequent contributor to Planning magazine and doesn’t go anywhere at 5 a.m. He lives in Centerville. Paul Shigley may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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