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Friday, April 29, 2011

May Day in Richardson Grove!

Defend our Roots on Sunday the first of May


YES! In Richardson Grove from dawn to dusk. Celebrate the ancient holy day on Sunday May 1st by mingling with the greatest May Poles on the Planet.

Gather at the turnout just north of the Grove just after Bigfoot Burl. The Richardson Grove Truth Booth will be there, stocked with literature, videos, and graphics.

“Guided tours” by our knowledgeable booth crew will be held every hour on the hour. The Children’s Corner will be in session, providing childcare as well as special child-level explorations of the Grove.

Drummers will be drumming and entertainers will be entertaining.
So bring your instruments, songs and signs along with food to share.
Bring your tree ornaments and decorations to make this a May Day to remember.

You can spend some of the day as one of the Eco-tourism Counselors, getting the travelers out of their cars and trucks, hopefully to explore the Grove with the rest of us.

Check it out Sunday May 1st.

Thanks from the Preserve Richardson Grove Hospitality Committee.

For more info call 952-215-4058.

Times-Standard Conflict of Interest...

From the 2003 Caltrans funded study by Cambridge Systematics

A representative of the Eureka Times-Standard, the local newspaper, commented that some businesses, such as newspapers, must keep higher inventory levels due to poor access, erratic deliveries, and damage during transfers. The newspaper’s shippers do not want to bring in newsprint because of the limitations on trucks. The paper probably loses two to three truckloads of newsprint per year. The extra handling due to transferring loads to smaller trucks causes problems. Advertising inserts are printed elsewhere and added to the paper. Typically, about 30 percent of the inserts are bent through extra handling, which requires them to be inserted by hand (rather than using machines). The newspaper has to pay overtime for extra staff to add the inserts. The newspaper is unable to recoup the higher costs through advertising revenue.

[Can a newspaper that wants the road widening project through Richardson Grove cover the issue without biasing everything in favor of the project? We know the Times-Standard has pretty low standards when it comes to objective journalism AS IT IS.]

Thursday, April 28, 2011

FlashMob for the Grove!

Richardson Grove Action Now has got all the words together for the funky, powerful song and we've started working out the dance moves for the FLASH MOB! (to prevent the road widening thru Richardson Grove, of course.)

There are two rehearsals coming up soon. Please come, and bring your enthusiasm, your instruments (if you got em and know how to play them), and your best singing voice (which doesn't need to be anything special)! Our first rehearsal was a hoot and productive all in one.

*Friday Night (April 29th): 7:00-9:00pm at Synapsis*, 47 West 3rd Street, Eureka, way down 3rd toward Commercial Avenue, a block and a half from the Eureka Corp-Op and next to St. Vinnie's Free Meal

*Tuesday (May 3rd): 5:30-8:00pm at PARC*, in the Q Street Alley between 3rd & 2nd Streets, Eureka

See you there!

Please remember, in order to reply to this email, reply to
Our number is 707.602.7551

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Richardson Grove Action Now Press Release, April 20, 2011


Opponents of Federally-Funded CalTrans Plan To Widen Hwy 101 Through Richardson Grove State Park Warn Contractors Seeking To Work On The Plan:


Contact: Richardson Grove Action Now 707.602.7551,

Humboldt County, CA: In an April 18, 2011 protest, the latest in a series of direct actions and mass rallies, including a day-long lockdown occupation of the CalTrans District 1 Headquarters, a treesit on private property bordering Hwy 101 that CalTrans plans to steal and de-forest, two large banner hangs, and a crafty public meeting disruption, Richardson Grove Action Now (RGAN) declared, “Bidders Beware! We will stop you every step of the way.” Northcoast communities are not only threatened with the Naval war games testing and bomb detonation currently taking place off the Northern Pacific Coast, but now must stave off a federally-motivated CalTrans plan to mutilate an ancient redwood grove so that trans-national corporations, nuclear materials, development, and military have greater access to Humboldt Bay and to towns that have been relatively protected by a bottleneck of forests and winding roads from the South and East.

Sue Ricker of RGAN said at Monday's demonstration, “It's preposterous in 2011 to be destroying the last remaining 2% of old growth. If CalTrans can widen the highway through Richardson Grove State Park, a world-renowned redwood forest, they'll go to any length to convert the 101 into an interstate NAFTA artery.”

RGAN vows to stop this plan in the trees, roads, and offices, and has been relentlessly vocal about CalTrans' lies regarding the motivations, logistics, and consequences of the road widening project. “Despite CalTrans' biased claims that no old-growth trees will be cut or harmed if the project moves ahead, we know that excavating, cutting, compacting, and paving over the roots of ancient redwood trees spells certain death.” says members of RGAN. Furthermore, anyone traveling through the Grove, as do thousands of awestruck people every year, knows that in the narrowest sections of the road, there is little space (only 23 feet) between the humungous old growth trees. CalTrans' plan calls for 28 feet and would require CalTrans to cut the ancient monuments. RGAN notes that every time there is a protest against the expansion project, CalTrans trips over itself to create new lies and to counter growing awareness of the nefarious plan. While CalTrans claims that root excavation does no harm, several landslides have occurred in the past month, including a massive slide onto Highway 101 north of Richardson Grove, exhibiting of what happens to roads and mountains when roots no longer stabilize the ground.

April 18th was CalTrans' Advertised Bid day for the major construction in the road widening plan. Although recent activity in lawsuits against the project suggest that CalTrans will halt its bidding process for a couple of months, CalTrans District 1 Supervisor spoke on Monday to the press about the bidding process going forward, while the only delay he acknowledged regarded a related, but separate, culvert project in the Grove.

On Monday (April 18th), while a hundred community members protested at the CalTrans District 1 HQ in escalating resistance to the highway expansion, CalTrans locked its doors to the public. While demonstrating on the office lawn, people made dozens of phone calls to CalTrans to express opposition to the plan; CalTrans responded by turning off its phones. One demonstrator climbed a ladder onto the roof to address the crowd and highlight the urgency of direct action to prevent the road widening: “We are strong, unified and growing in numbers. We will not back down, and our determination to protect the Redwood Curtain is not shaken by the violence, lies, and scare tactics perpetuated by the State, nor by distortions of the truth from the complicit corporate media.” She was arrested by several officers. Many officers were posted inside, at the front doors, and on the various rooftops of the HQ.

One demonstrator's thorough presentation to the crowd included information about the long-standing and shrouded motivations of the project and the fact that there are also CalTrans road “widening” projects on every highway entrance east to the Northcoast. The cracking open of the Redwood Curtain promises to forever change the physical, social, and economic landscape of the Northcoast and what has been, for millenia, redwood country.

RGAN will broaden and intensify the non-violent direct action campaign against the wasteful, illegal, and irreparable plan. The group warns potential bidder companies that contractors will deal with more than just a construction job if they choose to do harmful road widening through the world-renowned ancient grove.

Photos will be posted soon from April 18th Mass Rally Protest!

Download PDF of Press Release:

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Richardson Grove project on hold until July/August!

Federal case against Caltrans is awarded injunction until July 2011 in which project bidding may commence unless Caltrans is found to have violated environmental regulations. Which they have, in the Richardson Grove "Improvement" Project(RIP) Environmental Impact Report(EIR).

Bidding for the RIP cannot commence until July 2011 and any type of road work, vegetation removal, etc. for the RIP until after 30 days after the project goes to bid.

Many thanks to EPIC, CATS and The Center for Biological Diversity for their hard work on this very important matter. Please help support the Federal case against Caltrans by donating to these well respected non-profit environmental organizations.

It is very important to continue to put pressure on Caltrans with direct action to stop this project...

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Executive Director of Arcata Community Recycling Center Opposes Shipping of Waste Through the Grove.

ACRC Executive Director, Mark Loughmiller opposes shipping our county's trash through Richardson Grove in exchange for $42,ooo/yr, while our local recycling program gives over a million dollars, jobs, and educational opportunites back the community. We should prevent the loss of revenue from our recyclables, among other Humboldt county assests. Help keep 35 community recyclers employed! Help keep millions of dollars in Humboldt! No exporting of HumCo jobs through Richardson Grove!!

YouTube Invite: Mass Rally II at CalTrans, Direct Action Campaign to Defend Richardson Grove 04-18-11

Mass RALLY at CalTrans Monday, April 18th

Link to April 18 Rally Flier (2 sided)

Mass RALLY at CalTrans To Oppose Road Widening Thru Richardson Grove!

Protest On The Advertised Bid Day for Main Phase of
Richardson Grove Road Widening Construction

April 18th at NOON
CalTrans District 1 Headquarters
1656 Union St. (Union and Wabash)

April 18th, according to CalTrans, is when the highway expansion plan will be advertised for contractor bids.


No “business as usual” until this plan is canceled!


Gathering at the Arcata Plaza at 9:30am
Bicyclists will leave at 10am for the mass Rally in Eureka!

Bring signs, banners, musical instruments, & bullhorns on Monday to get your message across.

Protect the forest and our future. RESIST INVASION.

Contact: Richardson Grove Action Now

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Disrupt the bid start day! Mass Rally Mon April 18 To Oppose CalTrans' Federally-Funded Road Widening Plan Through Richardson Grove State Park

MEDIA ALERT: April 14, 2011 For Immediate Release

Contact: Richardson Grove Action Now (707) 602-7551,

Mass Rally Monday April 18 at Noon To Oppose CalTrans'
Federally-Funded Plan to Widen the Highway Through Richardson Grove State Park

Protest Coincides With Advertised Bid Day for Bulk of Richardson Grove Highway Construction

Humboldt County: Richardson Grove Action Now has organized a rally for Monday, April 18, 2011 at CalTrans District One Headquarters in Eureka to protest the federally-funded plan to widen Highway 101 through Richardson Grove State Park. April 18th is the advertised bid day for the main phase of construction for the Richardson Grove project. The protest will begin at noon where participants will again demand “No Road Widening Through Richardson Grove.”

Richardson Grove Action Now asks , “If CalTrans can build in a State Park and injure protected old-growth, steal adjacent private property forestland, and violate the Endangered Species Act, what is stopping them from building anywhere for any reason and turning it all into highway?”

The organizers invite all who value living ecosystems and locally-owned business instead of free-trade corridors for interstate commerce to come to CalTrans and declare “HANDS OFF THE ANCIENT FOREST! We are resisting your military and corporate invasion!” Rallyers are encouraged to bring signs, banners, musical instruments, and bullhorns on Monday to make sure that there is no business as usual for CalTrans on the bid day and to deliver the message cancel the plan.

On the morning of Monday April 18th , bicyclists against the highway expansion through Richardson Grove will depart at 10am from the Arcata Plaza for a group ride to the Mass Rally at CalTrans in Eureka.

Richardson Grove Action Now believes that a grassroots movement committed to direct action is key in the struggle against Caltrans' disastrous and destructive project. Richardson Grove Action Now is interested in organizing with anyone to protect the autonomy of west coast rural communities, and to keep corporate and government entities from ruining our local economy and dominating and bullying us. Organizers know that CalTrans' highway expansions are supported by U.S. Military and so-called defense agencies that wish to have greater access to and control over the people and natural resources of this region.

Richardson Grove Action Now invites all opposed to the plan to CalTrans this Monday, April 18th to insist on the right to survive and determine what passes through our lives and covers the landscape of our home.

For more info: Richardson Grove Action Now at (707) 602-7551 or email

Can't You Read the Signs, CalTrans?

Friday, April 8, 2011

Second Mass RALLY at CalTrans on MON, APRIL 18

Mass RALLY at CalTrans In Opposition to the Road Widening Through Richardson Grove!

Richardson Grove Action Now announces and invites all to a mass RALLY at CalTrans in Eureka on Monday, April 18th. April 18, 2011, according to CalTrans, is the date when the highway expansion plan through Richardson Grove State Park will be advertised for subcontractor bids.

We are the people and the people say "NO ROAD WIDENING THROUGH RICHARDSON GROVE!"

Protect the forest and our future. Resist Invasion.

Rally on Monday, April 18th at NOON
CalTrans District 1 Headquarters
1656 Union St. (Union and Wabash)

There will be a group bike ride meeting at the Arcata Plaza at 9:30am before the rally. Bicyclists will leave at 10am for Eureka!

For info or to get more involved contact Richardson Grove Action Now, call
(707) 602-7551 or email


Monday April 18th, mass Rally to protest the road widening plan through Richardson Grove. Noon at CalTrans District 1 Headquarters at Union and Wabash in Eureka.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

To Stop the Road Widening- from the Ragin' Grannies

As a Raging Granny we do/sing protest songs.. Here is one for Richardson Grove which was my first REDWOOD. --Jean Doran, beloved Ragin' Granny

This is more a chant than a song:

Bigger Trucks
Wider Roads
Trees don't matter
Build those Roads

State Parks protect
Trees that are there
When danger comes

Song from Jefferson and The Defenders of the Holy Grove

The speciousness of Humboldt Supervisor Mark Lovelace's arguments in light of the obvious reasons for the road widening project prompted these new verses to Jefferson's song "Avenue of Angels." The entire song is below.

Old Boys want to break the barriers
To business as usual, I'd say.
Big Trucks will be the carriers,
CalTrans will pave the way.

It's easy to see what they're after,
Once they have opened the door--
Like nature bowing to NAFTA--
They want a coastal, commercial corridor.

Here is the song in its entirety. Written by (c) Jefferson Parson 2011

Avenue of Angels

Daddy, don't make new deadwood;
Don't widen that highway for me.
If you love me, leave those redwoods
Right where they're meant to be.

Today, we don't slay that dragon, So don't tame that tiger for me.
It's not OK to turn that redwood
Into a drive-through tree.

We've got to bridge love and understanding,
Leave loco-motion madness, roaring crowds;
We need an avenue of angels made of emeralds,
With rainbow seat-belts, air-bags made of clouds,

Because the highway of Heaven has no asphalt,
No rusty cars with obsolescent parts;
It's an avenue of angels made of emeralds
With luminescent rays from heart to heart.

Old Boys want to break the barriers
To business-as-usual, I'd say.
Big trucks will be the carriers,
CalTrans will pave the way.

It's easy to see what they're after,
Once they have opened the door--
Like nature bowing to NAFTA--
They want a coastal commercial corridor. [repeat chorus]

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Chock Full of Info: Letter to Jerry Brown from Barbara Kennedy

To Humboldt County Supervisors:

It should be obvious that Highway 101 traverses land that is geologically sensitive. The Franciscan formation underlies our area - it is porous, allowing water to penetrate and loosen its soil and rocks - as a result, it slides. CALTRANS is barely able to keep Highway 101 open. I refer not just to the slide north of Redway but also to the large slipout north of Redcrest that has taken years to repair, and the huge slide along the Ridgewood grade between Willets and Ukiah. This is a highway that is prone to failure and will continue to fail.

In spite of these facts, CALTRANS is embarked on a multifacted project to widen and straighten the major arteries (199,197,299 and 101) leading to and from our area to allow access by STAA trucks, thus creating a network of alternate routes to I-5. Although CALTRANS claims that more truck traffic will not ensue, this flies in the face of reason - millions of dollars have been allocated to these projects for this very purpose.

STAA trucks are not only unlimited in length but they will be heavier as well if the trucking industry succeeds in its lobbying efforts in Congress to increase the weight limit from 80,000 lbs. to 97,000 lbs.

STAA trucks will not stay exclusively on the highway - they will leave the highway on terminal access routes and service access routes - in other words, into our neighborhoods and onto our local roads. The cost of maintenance of our local roads is borne by Humboldt County taxpayers, not the Federal or State governments.

The County is presently unable to maintain the local roads. The condition of these roads approaches those of an undeveloped, third world country. Yet, in spite of all these obvious facts, Supervisors remain in lock-step as to their approval of the Richardson Grove and 197/199 projects as communicated to CALTRANS in a Consent Calendar agenda item without any public opportunity for comment on September 9, 2008 and vigorously reiterated ever since.

Highway 101 is NOT Interstate 5. We do not need, want, or can afford larger, heavier trucks on Highway 101, in our neighborhoods, or on our local roads. It is time that the Humboldt County Supervisors stand up for the best interests of the citizens of Humboldt County and oppose the CALTRANS projects.

Very truly yours, Barbara Kennedy

Open Letter to Gov Jerry Brown from Richardson Grove Action Now

March 30, 2011
Sent Via Facsimile, U.S. Mail, and Electronic Mail

RE: Opposition to California Department of Transportation's Highway 101 Road Widening Project Through Richardson Grove State Park (project number #464804)

Governor Edmund G. Brown, Jr.
c/o State Capitol, Suite 1173
Sacramento, CA 95814

Open Letter to Governor Jerry Brown,

We, Richardson Grove Action Now, are writing today to inform you of CalTrans' plan to widen Highway 101 through Richardson Grove State Park in hopes that you will use your power to prevent this project from proceeding. The word “inform” has been used very specifically here. Given that you're known for your reverence of the ancient redwood forests and indeed your respect for your constituents, many of whom make the North Coast their home, we cannot imagine that you are aware of the specifics of this project. Before we outline those specifics, we would like to relay the words of John Muir displayed on a placard in Richardson Grove State Park: “God has cared for these trees, saved them from drought, disease, avalanches, and a thousand tempests and floods.” However, the end of Muir's statement, not seen on this placard, continues as follows: “But he cannot save them from fools.” Let us not be fools.

A major concern with the proposed project to widen Highway 101 through Richardson Grove is the damage it will cause to the ancient old-growth redwoods in and around the Grove. Many of these living monuments already border the road and many more are within several feet. The proposed project, as outlined in CalTrans' Environmental Impact Report [EIR], entails cutting forest and widening the road so that the asphalt reaches the trunks of ancient trees. Redwood root systems are both shallow and wide. Thus, in order to expand the road, CalTrans intends to “excavate” and cut into the root systems of ancient trees and impact them with pavement. Although CalTrans claims that it will not be cutting roots larger than two inches in diameter, it is clear, once again from the EIR, that this claim is false. CalTrans likely tells this lie because it is well known that redwoods experience canopy die-off when their root systems are damaged. It is also disingenuous for CalTrans to claim it will not fall ancient trees for this project. The road and shoulder expansion that CalTrans plans cannot physically fit between several of the huge, ancient redwoods lining the narrowest parts of the road. Cutting trees in the State Park and compromising the health and vitality of old-growth redwoods, especially considering how few of them are left on Earth, is unacceptable.

The purpose of the federally and state funded “Richardson Grove Improvement Project” (as it's dubbed by CalTrans) is economic in nature. As stated on the CalTrans website, the project would allow Surface Transportation Assistance Act [STAA] trucks heavier use of Highway 101 north of Leggett. Currently, the smooth area of road running through Richardson Grove State Park is the only section of Highway 101 where STAA trucks are restricted from traveling, although these trucks are regularly granted exemptions and do pass through the area. CalTrans alleges that the STAA prohibition (albeit exemptions) results in economic disadvantage because “truck cargo must be unloaded and transferred to shorter trucks, making goods movement more expensive.” Though we do not believe in this reasoning, as will be further discussed later in this letter, our purpose in mentioning it here is to highlight that this project is clearly predicated on economic, not safety or environmental, reasons. Interfering with a state park for economic purposes is not only wrong; it is illegal. Furthermore, in this time of economic crisis, the ten million plus dollars that are being allocated for the road widening project through the Grove could be better utilized elsewhere.

The 1.1 mile stretch of Highway 101 that passes through Richardson Grove State Park announces one's southern entry into redwood country. It is both the symbolic and literal threshold to what is lovingly known as the Redwood Curtain. Beyond this portal exists a relatively strong regional economy where the majority of businesses are locally-owned. Allowing easier and constant access to this area for more STAA trucks will open the flood gates for large, multi-national corporations to gain a foothold here. Indeed, this is what the project to widen Highway 101 through Richardson Grove is truly about. While it may offer an economic boost for some in the short term, we know that time and time again, this pattern of economic “growth” has proven to be detrimental to communities across the country. Widening the road through Richardson Grove would defile the spirit and unique character of the North Coast, a sanctuary that we cannot afford to lose.

In closing, we believe there are many reasons why the “Richardson Grove Improvement Project" is wrong. It is wrong to jeopardize the vitality of one of California's State Parks for purported economic gain. It is wrong to injure and risk what is left of the ancient redwood ecosystem. It is wrong to increase the vulnerability of our communities and landscape by subjecting us to the will of multi-national corporations. It is wrong to perpetuate the genocide of indigenous peoples by further degrading the Grove, a place of spiritual and cultural significance. Only employment initiatives which promote, not degrade, the health of Humboldt residents and the region's unique ecosystems should be explored. We implore you to act with us to help save Richardson Grove State Park and in the process, help preserve the unique cultural heritage, true wealth, and beauty found on the North Coast of California.


Richardson Grove Action Now
P.O. Box 5692
Eureka, CA 95502
(707) 602-7551

Cal Trans "find everything" number

If you use CalTrans' search engine on its website:
You can find various pages related to the Richardson Grove plan using these numbers (mile markers):


The Project Number is #464804