Santa Paula Times

Know Your Community: SP focus of League of Women Voters publication

March 18, 2005
Santa Paula News

A new publication about the Santa Paula area prepared by the local unit of the League of Women Voters (LVW) is hot off the presses.

By Peggy KellySanta Paula TimesA new publication about the Santa Paula area prepared by the local unit of the League of Women Voters (LVW) is hot off the presses. According to Dr. Dora Crouch, the publication, “Know Your Community: A Study of the Santa Paula Area” is a LWV requirement for new units.“We started this almost two years ago,” when the Santa Paula LWV was revived. The Santa Paula Unit is open to members from throughout the Santa Clara River Valley, Dr. Crouch noted.The publication – which addresses Santa Paula’s history and background, water, education, art/museums and entertainment - took “much longer than it should have!” to prepare. “We were all so busy with so many things…it took nine months of hard work.” The publication features drawings, photos, Murals of Santa Paula, and even a painting by prominent area artist Gail Pidduck.“People were very generous,” said Dr. Crouch. “Gail Pidduck allowed us to use a painting” showing South Mountain overlooking the river valley, displayed in her recent Ventura County Museum of History & Art exhibit. Tom and Marian Crane offered the use of vintage drawings, and the City of Santa Paula allowed the use of their logo for the publication.Dr. Crouch said that the Education Fund of the League of Women Voters will “pay the bill…it’s a fund allocated to the local units” for such informational material. The Santa Paula Unit will donate the publication to Blanchard Community Library – Dr. Crouch is a former Trustee and Board President of BCL – and the Chamber of Commerce.“We’re going to give some to the city and the library to give out to other people, and we’ll see if area Realtors would like some. We thought they would be useful for anyone moving to town, and we wanted the chamber to have some also; we think they be useful for them also.”
The standard title for the League-sponsored publication is “Know Your Community”, and Dr. Crouch said the Santa Paula Unit addressed not only the city but also the surrounding area. “We added the study of the surrounding area” to be able to include Thomas Aquinas College, Steckel Park and Hansen Agricultural Learning Center, among others.Grower and farmworker housing activist Ellen Brokaw wrote the chapter on agriculture. “If anyone knows about ag it’s Ellen,” said Dr. Crouch.The publication will “likely not be done again in our lifetimes…the examples we saw were from the 1980s.”A published author and Santa Paula resident for almost 14 years, Dr. Crouch wrote the chapter on the City of Santa Paula organization, and “getting that down to four paragraphs was a tour de force!”Copies of the free publication will soon be available throughout Santa Paula, and the Santa Paula Unit members plan to formally present the 25-page magazine format edition to the City Council and BCL Board of Trustees.Gladys Bibb was the “Editor in chief,” and Marion Totheroh worked with Dr. Crouch on the publication. “We’re happy to have this because it increased our appreciation for the Santa Paula area,” said Dr. Crouch.