Column: Library’s curbside pickup provides mental sustenance

Area libraries are closed up tight, but Rancho Cucamonga’s twin branches are doing curbside pickup of books and other physical materials, and one branch’s computer center is open for those without internet or a computer at home. “People are finding out about it, which is what we want,” the library director says. I write in praise of an innovative library in Sunday’s column.

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Column: Own your own vintage grapevine, whose roots go deep

Remember the vineyard at Haven and Fourth in Rancho Cucamonga that had its last harvest in 2017? It’s languished, but with development delayed, the public will get a chance to buy the vines individually ($25 each) and dig them up for home replanting. The 1930s vines may be the oldest within city limits. I write about this, with details of the sale, in my Friday column.

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Column: More TV magic in ’70s at RC winery

I return to the subject of the former Virginia Dare Winery’s role as a setting for various old TV episodes, in this case for “The Magician” with Bill Bixby. A reader met him. The winery also turned up in various L.A./SoCal architectural guidebooks during its period of abandonment. All that makes up Wednesday’s column.

In passing I mention having found two guidebooks Monday night while rearranging a bookcase. Funny how things work out. I’m midway through taking books off shelves, dusting the shelves, blowing dust off the tops of the books, culling a few books (not enough, but some) and neatening up the rest.

Monday night I was doing all this with a bookcase that has my L.A.-related books (plus travel, plus mysteries…that’s just how it’s worked out). I own two editions of “An Architectural Guidebook to Los Angeles” and, eyeing them before replacing them, wondered if I needed the oldest one, from 1977, which I’d picked up at the Last Bookstore a few years ago. It turns out it’s got several Inland Empire listings, including the winery. The subsequent edition eliminated the hinterlands to stick to L.A. County. OK, so I’ll keep it.

The next book was the similar “The City Observed: Los Angeles,” a guidebook that likewise has a bunch of Inland Empire listings. The winery is in that book too, with an almost literary description that I decided was worth quoting.

So I brought it into the office Tuesday morning and added the info to the column in progress. More proof, if any is needed, that assembling these columns has a fair amount of happenstance to it, not to mention luck.

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