August 24, 2011

Volunteer Training Course

We are looking for people with a positive and friendly attitude that are interested becoming volunteers at Colonel Allensworth State Historic Park. Volunteer opportunities include welcoming park visitors at the visitors’ center, interpreting the historic building, or behind the scenes work such as housekeeping and maintenance. The two day training course is Sept 24 and 25, from 9 am to 4 pm at the Park.

The course includes a general history of the Allensworth colony, interpretive skills and techniques, how to give a tour, correct period attire, and how to engage young visitors.

Lunch will be provided Saturday, but you must bring your own lunch Sunday.

Those interested in attending the two day course should contact Thomas Stratton, Friends of Allensworth Statewide President, at (530) 949-2168 or

Stephen Hill, Sr.

August 17, 2011

Fresno to Bakersfield Draft Environmental Impact Report

The draft Environmental Impact Report/Statement (EIR/EIS) for the Fresno to Bakersfield section of the California High-Speed Train System has been released. The draft evaluates six High-Speed Train (HST) alignments. The BNSF Alternative is a single continuous route from Fresno to Bakersfield. The Allensworth Bypass is one of five bypasses being considered for this section of the HST. The Allensworth Bypass would diverge from the BNSF Alternative at Avenue 84 in Tulare County and swing west of Allensworth State Historic Park, rejoining the BNSF Alternative at Elmo Highway in Kern County.

“The BNSF Alternative would require the acquisition of property from Allensworth State Historic Park and the Allensworth Ecological Reserve. This alternative would also cause visual and noise impact on the park. The Allensworth Bypass Alternative would avoid these impacts and reduce the acreage of jurisdictional waters permanently affected by the project. However, the Allensworth Bypass Alternative would have a greater property tax revenue reduction, cause more agricultural business impacts, convert more acres of farmland to nonagricultural uses, and affect more acres of Williamson Act land than the BNSF Alternative.”
The California High-Speed Rail Authority is accepting public and agency comments on the Draft EIR/EIS until September 28, 2011. After reviewing the public comments the Rail Authority will issue a final project EIR/EIS that includes responses to the submitted comments and the preferred alternative route. According to the Next Steps Schedule (below) operation of the Fresno to Bakersfield section of the High-Speed Rail will begin in 2018.

Next Steps Schedule

The summary and highlights of the California HST EIR/EIS gives more details about which of the twenty-four alternative combinations will have a visual and noise impact, introduce a modern feature that is not consistent with the historic atmosphere or require the acquiescent of property from Allensworth State Historic Park.
Please attend one of the public workshops, public hearings or submit your comments to the California High-Speed Rail Authority; they could help determine how the California HST will affect Colonel Allensworth State Historic Park.

Send written comments to:
California High-Speed Rail Authority
Fresno to Bakersfield Draft EIR/EIS Comments
770 L Street, Suite 800
Sacramento, CA 95814

Send email comments to:
With subject line "Draft EIR/EIS Comment”

California High-Speed Rail Authority Website:

Stephen Hill, Sr.