Column: Base Line, the long and winding interchange

A view looking north on East Avenue in the left turn lane that seems to be on the wrong side of the freeway pylons.

I marvel at the improved but still confounding Base Line Road interchange in Rancho Cucamonga and Fontana in Wednesday’s column, while also tossing in a list of notable upcoming local concerts and a Valley Vignette. If you’ve had any experience with that interchange, past or present, I’d like to hear about it, in hopes that it isn’t just me.

Secrets Behind the Columns Dept.: I wrote the interchange item as long ago as May and revised it a few weeks later but, unsure if it was column-worthy, saved it for a rainy day. I’m on call for jury duty this week and don’t know from day to day if I’ll be working the next day or serving. Learning Monday night that I’d be working Tuesday, and thus would need to file a column by 1 p.m., I hauled the interchange item up from the depths.

Will I have a Friday column or a Sunday column? Only court administrators know for sure.

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The Anchor Lounge?

An email query arrived from Carolyn Inhoffer Montes, who asks:

I hope you can help answer a question for me. My dad, a Marine, was chatting with a fellow Marine, who asked him if he knew about the ‘Anchor Lounge’ in Rancho Cucamonga, owned by a Navy guy (thus the name) that was ‘in the middle of a vineyard. My dad and I are assuming it was a ‘seedy’ place…

Nonetheless, he keeps asking if I have learned where it was located. I’ve googled to see if anything would pop up, but nothing does. I saw your blog and thought you might be able to help me, given your historic knowledge of Rancho.

Any thoughts? Or insight?

I’ve never heard of this, but that doesn’t mean much. Have you any of you?

Update: via the Alta Cucawanda Friends Facebook page, Chris H. Boesen says the Anchor Lounge was on Foothill Boulevard, just west of Hermosa Avenue, on the north side, in what is now a patio furniture store. “I know it was there in the mid-’70s. Don’t remember when it closed,” Boesen writes. “It was a dive bar for sure.” And Jane Vath O’Connell says: “I remember it as a place called Capt. Shinks!”

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Column: One last grape harvest in RC vineyard

One of the most visible vineyards in the area is the one in Rancho Cucamonga at the corner of Haven and Fourth. The harvest this week is likely the last, though, as hotels have been proposed for the site. I watch as grapes are picked and write about it in Friday’s column (with great photos by Will Lester). Above, a field worker totes a tray of grapes to the truck. (I shot that one.)

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Column: Sale finally ends at RC mattress shop

The mattress shop at Foothill and Archibald in Rancho Cucamonga finally expired after a so-called liquidation sale that dragged on for years, under more than one business name. Huh! That leads off Friday’s column, followed by a bunch of cultural notes and one explaining that I’m on vacation. If I’m posting this late, that’s because I’m more than a few time zones away. The photo above was shot Tuesday afternoon. The interior was vacant.

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Column: She stopped a bulldozer to save Rains House

Rancho Cucamonga’s Rains House, built in 1860, almost fell to the wreckers in 1970. But then junior high teacher Maxine Strane stepped in, persuasively, and after a lot of effort, Rains House became a protected historic site. Strane’s memorial took place at Rains House on Saturday, attended by family, friends and former students. I write about it in Wednesday’s column.

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Can we get an Amen Guy?

Photo by David Thomas at 19th and Carnelian, 2007

He’s sort of a local legend, although his name isn’t widely known. Certainly I don’t know it. He’s the streetcorner evangelist with a van and a megaphone. The Filipino-American has been operating in the Inland Valley for years, probably since the 1990s, often with his wife at his side.

Reader David Thomas saw him most recently last fall. He calls him “the Amen guy…because when we see him holding his religious signs, we’ll give a supportive honk and he’ll reply through the megaphone ‘Amen!'” The man had a 7-foot pole with multiple signs and drives what Thomas called a Jesus van based on its signage.

He saw the Amen Guy at Carnelian and 19th, heard he’s been seen at Haven and Lemon and recalled years ago seeing him at Arrow and Archibald. He asked if the man had ever been profiled in our newspaper, and I said not to my knowledge.

I had tried, in 2003, after a tip that he lived next to a drive-through dairy on Grove Avenue; the operator promised to pass along a message from me, but the man never got in touch. Perhaps he prefers not to have his story out there, or maybe he’s just shy.

I have not seen him in a decade or more, I don’t think, so it was nice to hear he’s still around and shouting. Have any of you seen him? Do you know anything about him?

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Who let the dogs out?

Rancho Pups 012617

A woman and her daughter were leaving Waba Grill in Rancho Cucamonga last Thursday and encountered this parked car “with three cute canines who appear to be trying out for a Subaru commercial,” reader Louise Shane, who passed along the photo, reports.

“The German Shepherd remained calm and quiet in the rear, the ‘driver’ Pit Bull appeared to be looking past the steering wheel to get a better look at my friend, and the ‘passenger’ was standing guard barking and barking, protecting the car and his/her car mates.”

As long as they don’t slip the car into neutral, everything’s cool.

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