Author Archives: Michael Fitzgerald

Stockton songs, down at the bar

Edward Bonilla writes: “My band Radical Times recently won Fan Favorite in the Stockton song contest. Brandon James won first prize. However, I really kinda fell in love with Ron Gibbs song. He did not come close to winning but check it out:” “The production is bad, but he is really talented. He also turns out to be [...]

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Attorney: Centrale was “delinquent”

Gabriel Porras writes: “Upon reading your last blog entry regarding Centrale, I would like to point out what Christopher’s attorney (Anthony Vignolo) told me in an exclusive statement: “Regarding the posted liquor license notice, I have not yet had an opportunity to discuss it with my client, but I can tell you that since January [...]

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“The most unprofessional and slumlord way”

Christa Johnson of Centrale Kitchen and Bar writes: “Thank you for your article (“Fighting Fire with a Hammer,” 6/8). “To set the record straight. We were moving because Kit (Building owner Christopher “Kit” Bennitt) pushed us out. He supposedly signed a lease with a new tenant…. which we only found out about through town gossip. He refused [...]

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Another photo of Captain Dave

We eulogized him last week. The photo captures Gumbaro’s glower, his fondness for things military and his growing hoard. When I visited his house, the overflowing collection of exotica, military items and plain weird objects was so fascinating you could sell admission tickets … except only one person at at time could squeeze through the [...]

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The “swindler” behind Lemuria and “Mu”

Anonymous writes: “Growing up in the town of Mount Shasta in the 40’s and 50’s, I gained some insight into the myths about connections to Mu and Lemurians.  Your article about the local hoax of 1934 reminded me of a possible source for the basis of the hoax. “In 1930 Guy Ballard started publishing articles and lecturing [...]

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To change cities, change parking

Robert E. Oakes forwards an article on parking — yes, parking — from Public Square: “It challenged some of my assumptions and gave me inspiration about how to move Stockton forward.” The idea is that parking is a hidden-in-plain sight component of urbanism that can be easily changed with great results. “First, charge the right [...]

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Machado: N/S bullet train goes wrong direction

  Former State Senator Mike Machado writes: “I read with interest your unabashed enthusiasm for the bullet train. Some additional background. “Fresno was chosen as the sight for initial construction not so much for its geography as for the political considerations to re elect a philandering congressman who was in a tight race because of [...]

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Tracy’s appalling daily Exodus

” … a big problem right now in Tracy is that most of its community spends several hours commuting each day for work. Local jobs often do not compensate people enough to afford Tracy, which is on the outer edge of the Bay Area’s real estate crunch,” says a KQED story. “About 70 percent of [...]

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High-speed rail means Valley jobs

And a “share of California’s bounty” for the San Joaquin Valley. “That’s not a boondoggle. That’s fair,” says the Sacramento Bee in an outsanding editorial. The Bee points out that “At last count, 380 small businesses had a piece of the project … more than $1 billion in construction invoices for work between Madera and [...]

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Why home-building is stalled in Stockton

Former Mayor Anthony Silva, prodded by developers, persuaded the Council to reduce Stockton’s building fees. The idea was to spur home-building, which around here is flatter than syrup on a pancake. It didn’t work. Surrounding cities, meanwhile, are seeing brisk home-building. Why? I asked John Beckman, head of the Building Industry association of the Greater [...]

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    Michael Fitzgerald

    Mike Fitzgerald is The Record’s award-winning metro columnist. His column runs in the paper three times a week. Born in San Francisco, he was raised in Stockton. His column covers diverse beats including, sometimes, the offbeat. Read Full
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