Raise a Fork, Raise some Funds for Ely

On July 24, 2011, the Lake County Historical Society, a non-profit organization, opened the Ely Stage Stop & Country Museum to the public marking the beginning of what would become one of the most important educational and cultural sites in Lake County.

Five years of operations are now being celebrated by the docents and volunteers of the museum.

Through its displays, activities, and collections, the Stage Stop offers the public a chance to step back in time, experiencing and learning about the region’s history, geography, and culture. In addition to free general public admission, the museum hosts regularly scheduled educational programs for local school children, community activities and provides facilities for large group gatherings such as family reunions, meetings, lectures, community fundraising events, weddings, and training programs.

The Stage Stop operates and flourishes solely by donations of time and money. Join the Ely docents and volunteers on Friday, August 26, from 6 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. at the Riviera Hills Restaurant & Lounge for a fundraiser round up Italian-style. Enjoy an evening of family, friends and fun as we raise a fork (and some funds) to complete the Blacksmith Shop.

Feast as the Italians do on a multi-course buffet of antipasto, primo, secondo, contorno and dolce. A no host bar will be available. Win raffle baskets and bid on silent and live auction items.

John Parker, Ph.D., will be the keynote speaker talking about an 1876 Lake County painting that was recently discovered in the Rothschild collection.

A $50 donation per person gets each guest a ticket to enjoy the feast and all the fun. Tickets must be purchased in advance by Monday, August 15. Seating is limited, so purchase now. Call 707.279.0493 for your tickets or stop by the museum during visitor hours and purchase them from the docents.

Riviera Hills Restaurant & Lounge is located at 10200 Fairway Drive, Kelseyville, CA. Please support the Ely Stage Stop & Country Museum, preserving Lake County’s past, present and future.

The museum is located at 9921 Hwy 281 (Soda Bay Road) in Kelseyville, CA, near Clearlake Riviera, just north of Hwy 29-Kit’s Corner. Current hours of operation are 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. each Saturday and Sunday. For more information, check out www.elystagestop.org, www.lakecountyhistory.org,  www.facebook.com/elystagestop or call the Ely message line at at 707.533.9990.

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Dr. John Parker will be the keynote speaker at the Ely Riviera Round Up on Friday, August 26. Help the Ely Stage Stop volunteers raise funds to complete the Blacksmith Shop. Photo by Greg Blinn.

Ely Round Up at Riviera Hills

This month marks the 5th Anniversary of operations at the Ely Stage Stop & Country Museum in Kelseyville. On July 24, 2011, the Lake County Historical Society, a non-profit organization, opened the museum to the public marking the beginning of what would become one of the most important educational and cultural sites in Lake County.

In addition to free general public admission, the museum hosts regularly scheduled educational programs for local school children, community activities and provides facilities for large group gatherings such as family reunions, meetings, lectures, community fundraising events, weddings, training programs, etc.

The Stage Stop operates and flourishes solely by donations of time and money. Join the Ely docents and volunteers on Friday, August 26, from 6 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. at the Riviera Hills Restaurant & Lounge for a fundraiser round up Italian-style. Enjoy an evening of family, friends and fun as we raise a fork (and some funds) to complete the Blacksmith Shop.

Feast as the Italians do on a multi-course banquet of antipasto, primo, secondo, contorno and dolce. A no host bar will be available. Win raffle baskets and bid on silent and live auction items.

John Parker, Ph.D., will be the keynote speaker presenting “An 1876 Lake County Painting Discovered in the Rothschild Collection”.

A $50 donation per person gets each guest a ticket to enjoy the feast and all the fun. Tickets must be purchased in advance by Monday, August 15. Seating is limited, so purchase early. Call 707.279.0493 for your ticket or stop by the museum during visitor hours and purchase tickets from the docents.

Riviera Hills Restaurant & Lounge is located at 10200 Fairway Drive, Kelseyville, CA. Please support the Ely Stage Stop & Country Museum, preserving Lake County’s past, present and future.

The museum is located at 9921 Hwy 281 (Soda Bay Road) in Kelseyville, CA, near Clearlake Riviera, just north of Hwy 29-Kit’s Corner. Current hours of operation are 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. each Saturday and Sunday. For more information, check out www.elystagestop.org, www.lakecountyhistory.org, www.facebook.com/elystagestop or call the Ely message line at at 707.533.9990.

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John Parker, Ph.D., keynote speaker at the Ely Riviera Round Up Fundraiser dinner August 26, 2016. Get tickets before August 15. Raise a fork, raise some funds. Contributed photo.

Lessons From Green Water Shared at Ely Stage Stop’s Living History Day

The popular Living History Day series continues at the Ely Stage Stop & Country Museum on Saturday, June 25. On the fourth Saturday of each month local historians come to the main house to visit with guests and answer questions regarding different aspects of Lake County history. As these visits are recorded, the stories of Lake County’s history are being preserved for future generations.

This month Dr. Harry Lyons, Yuba College Biology Professor, will join Ely guests for Living History Day.  Dr. Lyons will weave the stories of two nutrient-rich aquatic ecosystems, the Hudson River and Clear Lake, addressing the problems and promises of such rich biological communities. Although differing in their geological and hydrologic histories, the two systems face similar problems with over-enrichment and point-source contamination. Most feel the biological condition of the Hudson has improved; some feel the biological condition of Clear Lake has not. Dr. Lyons’s talk will address the questions – Can the political action taken on behalf of the Hudson River serve as a model for pushing improvement of water quality in Clear Lake? How is the chance of success through political action dependent on the type of pollution and its causes?

Dr. Lyons grew up swimming and fishing in the Hudson River. His life-long interest in water led him to pursue his PhD in oceanography from the Scripps Institution of the University of California after academic work at Rutgers and Stanford. He has lived by, sampled from, and swum in Clear Lake for over thirty-five years. His talks are always peppered with the spirit of relevant songs. His presentation will begin at noon.

The Ely Stage Stop & Country Museum welcomes more docents to greet visitors and share information on our history, our current displays, and our planned events.  Volunteers for maintenance and construction projects are also needed. Come join the Lake County Historical Society and become a volunteer at Ely or our sister museum, the Gibson Museum & Cultural Center in Middletown.  Applications will be available during the day.

The Lake County Historical Society’s Ely Stage Stop & Country Museum is located at 9921 State Hwy 281 (Soda Bay Road) in Kelseyville, near Clear Lake Riviera, just north of Hwy 29 – Kit’s Corner. Current hours of operation are 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. each Saturday and Sunday. Private tours can be arranged by appointment.

Visit www.elystagestop.org or www.lakecountyhistory.org on facebook at www.facebook.com/eleystagestop, or call the museum at 707-533-9990.

Harry Lyons

Dr. Harry Lyons by the Hudson River. Come hear his presentation “Lessons from Green Water” at noon on Saturday, 6/25, for the Ely Stage Stop’s Living History Day. Contributed photo.

“Fiddle Away” first Sunday at Ely Stage Stop

Come join the ever popular First Sunday Fiddlers’ Jam at the Ely Stage Stop on June 5. The fun begins at the museum at 11:00 a.m. with the Fiddlers playing in the barn from 12 noon through 2 p.m. The Ely Stage Stop has proven to be the perfect venue to foster community interest and appreciation for the California Old Time Fiddlers’ Association’s music. Donations will benefit the Ely Stage Stop and the Old Time Fiddlers Association.

Come early and check out the latest museum acquisitions and displays. Take a stroll down the “barn trail” connecting the main house to the barn. Check out the new permanent outdoor stage that will be used to enhance future events on the property.

This free, family friendly event can be enjoyed by all, young and old alike.  Bring a picnic lunch to enjoy on one of the beautiful picnic tables.  Enjoy the music with beverages and tasty treats provided by the docents.  Bring your own wine and sip it in Ely Stage Stop wine glasses that are available for purchase. Come ready to clap your hands, tap your toes, and get up and dance!

The Lake County Historical Society’s Ely Stage Stop & Country Museum is located at 9921 State Hwy 281 (Soda Bay Road) in Kelseyville, near Clearlake Riviera, just north of Hwy 29-Kit’s Corner.  Current hours of operation are 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. each Saturday and Sunday.  Fiddlers’ Jams occur the first Sunday of every month from noon until 2 p.m. Living History events are held on the fourth Saturday of each month, again, from noon until 2 p.m. Private tours and/or public events can be arranged by appointment.

Visit www.elystagestop.org or www.lakecountyhistory.org, check out the stage stop on Facebook at www.facebook.com/elystagestop, or call the museum at 707-533-9990.

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Ely Stage Stop’s Fiddlers’ Jam enjoyed by musicians and audience alike. Join the fun on Sunday, June 5. Photo by Greg Blinn.

Gene Paleno revisits Ely Stage Stop for Living History Day

On the fourth Saturday of each month local historians come to the Ely Stage Stop to visit with guests and answer questions regarding different aspects of Lake County history.  As these visits are recorded, the stories of Lake County’s history are being preserved for future generations.

The docents and volunteers of the Ely Stage Stop & Country Museum are excited to welcome back Gene Paleno, author and illustrator living in Witter Springs. Paleno will be available to museum visitors on May 28 from noon till 2 p.m. Paleno’s visit that day will focus on the Bloody Island Massacre of 1850.  According to Paleno, his recently published Lake County History : A Mystical Adventure in Time includes the whole story as shared nowhere else. Copies of the book will be available for purchase and Paleno will be happy to sign them for interested visitors.

The Lake County Historical Society’s Ely Stage Stop & Country Museum is located at 9921 State Hwy 281 (Soda Bay Road) in Kelseyville, near Clearlake Riviera, just north of Hwy 29-Kit’s Corner.  Current hours of operation are 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. each Saturday and Sunday.  Living History events are held on the fourth Saturday of each month from noon until 2 p.m. Fiddlers’ Jams occur the first Sunday of every month, again, from noon until 2 p.m. Private tours can be arranged by appointment.

The Ely Stage Stop & Country Museum welcomes more docents to greet visitors and share information on our history, our current displays, and our planned events.  Volunteers for maintenance and construction projects are also needed. Come join the Lake County Historical Society and become a volunteer at Ely or our sister museum, the Gibson Museum & Cultural Center in Middletown.  Applications will be available during the day.

Visit www.elystagestop.org or www.lakecountyhistory.org, check out the stage stop on Facebook at www.facebook.com/elystagestop, or call the museum at 707-533-9990.

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Gene Paleno welcomed to Ely Stage Stop for January’s Living History Day. Ely welcomes him back for May’s event and a book signing. Contributed photo.

Appreciation Expressed on behalf of Ely Stage Stop

The Ely Stage Stop & Country Museum historic building, considered to be one of the oldest “stick built” buildings in Lake County, was moved from its prior location on Highway 29 in 2007. After the move, Lake County’s Public Service Department took on the task of installing the building on the site, bringing in utilities, restoring the inside and constructing the entrance, driveway, and parking area. Since then much progress has been made in transforming the property into the vision under which the original project was conceived. It is time to recap the progress made and show special appreciation to those individuals or businesses whose contributions have helped us grow into one of the most important educational and historical centers in Lake County.

Much research, creativity and effort was required to restore the main house into the showcase it has become today, from wallpaper selections to construction of the beautiful wrap-around porch. What resulted is a beautiful museum with ever-changing displays for the public to enjoy. The house has been used for a variety of fund-raising events such as a Farm-to-Table Dinner in 2012, the annual June Picnic on the Porch in 2013 and 2014 (with a repeat planned for this year) and a Whiskey In America tasting in 2014.

The annual Art and Science Camp, sponsored by the Children’s Museum of Art and Science, has been co-hosted by the Stage Stop and the Taylor Observatory in Kelseyville for the last three years. The living history presentations by Stage Stop docents are always a hit with the fourth through sixth grade students. The Camp returns for a fourth year in May.

Excitement really grew as the first barn construction got under way. The completed structure affords a refuge for our stage coach, various wagons, and other equipment needing protection from the elements. Gracing the barn is our Carpenter’s Star quilt block, donated anonymously through the Lake County Quilt Trail Project. The block was temporarily mounted on the wrap-around-porch, but it now has a permanent home on the barn. The carpenter theme highlights the many hours of manual labor volunteers have donated to make this first barn possible.

The barn has also become a popular event venue. The Stage Stop partners with the Northern California Old Time Fiddlers Association on the first Sunday of each month for Fiddlers’ Jam Sessions. Lake County has a bounty of talented musicians and the barn has proven to be the perfect venue to celebrate these local musicians and the American music heritage from the Ely Stage Stop Victorian Era. Our community has passionately embraced this cultural opportunity.

On the fourth Saturday of each month local historians come to the main house from noon to 2 p.m. to visit with guests and answer questions regarding different aspects of Lake County history. As these visits are recorded, the stories of Lake County’s history are being preserved.

Sturdy picnic tables afford picnicking on the grounds in fair weather. An historic1890‘s cable car and “Wiley” signal light reside at the Ely Stage Stop & Country Museum for the public’s enjoyment. When you drive by 9921 State Hwy 281 (better known as Soda Bay Road) you will know exactly where to find the Ely Stage Stop & Country Museum. The long awaited signage was erected in May of 2014. Bearing the striking Ely logo, the sign greets visitors and lures passers-by regardless of which direction they are traveling.

The current project being undertaken is the all-volunteer building of a working blacksmith shop which will serve as another interpretive and living history exhibit. Phase one of that complex is shaping up now next to the first barn.

All of this progress could not have been made without the support of so many local people and businesses through donations of money, materials, time or hard work. The Lake County Historical Society wishes to extend special appreciation to the following:

Jim Adams, Eric Andre, Jim Bengard, Rob Brown, Kelly Cox, Randy Craig and Erica Lundquist,
Steve Devoto, John Everett, Charlotte Griswold, Carson Holdenried, Marilyn and Myron Holdenried, Gene Kirkendall, Richard Kuehn, Barbra and William Lane, Pat and Ven Marshall, Tony Oliviera, Elizabeth Paddock, Jerry Raub, Alex Reid, the Seeley Family, Josephine and Gerry Shaul, Jr., Wilda Shock, Sam Slayden, Eric Stephensen, Sid Stokes, Justine Stottsberry, Beverly and Dave Thomas, Sharron and Brock Zoller

Braito’s Marina, Clear Lake Lava Rock, Clear Lake Redi-Mix, Clear Lake Trowel & Trellis, County of Lake, Foods, Etc., Kelly Moore Paints in Marin, Kelseyville Lumber, Kelseyville Scrap Metal, Konocti Conservation Camp CC#27, Lake County Chamber of Commerce, Lake County News, Lake County Quilt Trail Project, Lake County Record-Bee, Mt. Konocti Growers, Plaza Paints, RAH Outdoor Signs, Ray’s Food Place, Red & White Store, Rent-a-Center, Riviera Foods, Safeway in Clearlake, T & T Storage, Tri County Scrap Metals LLC, UCC Rental

Thanks also to the many anonymous and other unnamed donors who have contributed to this ongoing project to preserve Lake County history. We could not have accomplished so much without all of you.

Ely Stage Stop to Close for Lake County Historical Society Holiday Dinner

_sIGP9299The Ely Stage Stop and Country Museum, operated by the Lake County Historical Society, will be closed Sunday, November 16, so that docents and potential visitors can attend the LCHS Thanksgiving dinner meeting that day.  A traditional “turkey and all the trimmings” dinner will be enjoyed by attendees. Bernie Butcher of the Tallman Hotel and Blue Wing Saloon in Upper Lake will present a program on the history of Upper Lake. The second beautiful Ely picnic table will be raffled off so that will be the last chance to buy tickets.  Chris Skarada, last year’s winner, may be there to pull the winning ticket this year.

The meeting starts at 1:30 p.m. at the Live Oak Senior Center, located at 12502 Foothill Blvd. near the Oaks Plaza Park. Dinner tickets are $15 each for LCHS members and $18 each for non-members. For more information about the dinner contact Bonnie Skee at 707-262-1432 or Jackie Ridgel at 707-279-4062.

The Ely Stage Stop and Country Museum will be open as usual on Saturday, November 15, and then resume it’s Saturday/Sunday schedule the following weekend. The museum is located at 9921 Soda Bay Road (Hwy 281) in Kelseyville (near Clearlake Riviera). Normal hours of operation are 11:00 AM to 03:00 PM each Saturday and Sunday. Fiddlers’ Jams occur the first Sunday of every month. Contact number for questions about volunteer work, donations of old wood for barn construction, or docent applications is (707)533-9990.

Visit www.elystagestop.com or www.lakecountyhistory.org or check out the stage stop on Facebook at www.facebook.com/elystagestop.

Whisky in America presented at Ely Stage Stop

Whiskey setupAttendees of the April 12th Ely Stage Stop and Country Museum’s latest fundraiser, Whisky in America, had a spirited good time. Tartan kilt clad docent Rob Sansom poured seven distinct whiskies provided by Stephen Beal, Keeper of the Quaich, Senior Master of Whisky for DIAGEO, the world’s largest producer of whisky. Distilleries represented were George Dickel, Bulleit Bourbon and Rye, Johnnie Walker, Bushmills Irish and Barterhouse. Rosey Martin of Rosey Cooks, local Caterer and Kitchen Magician, presented savory small bites that accompanied the whisky selections perfectly. Included in her selections were a Cheese Sampler, Grown up Mac and Cheese, Chicken-Waffle Sliders, Guinness Beef Stew and Irish Coffee Pot de Creme.

Whiskey RepresenttiveAs guests savored the whiskies and food pairings, Beal spoke of the history of whisky in America, describing the broad spectrum of aromas, textures and tastes. He described the various grains, distillation pots, and oak casks used in the production of whisky. Participants learned how bottle shapes and labels evolved in functionality. The Keepers of the Quaich is an exclusive, international community of members recognized for their outstanding commitment to Scotch Whisky. The mission of the Keepers of the Quaich is to promote the values and image of Scotch Whisky as the world’s finest and most prestigious distilled spirit. Beal certainly did that for Ely’s guests that evening.

Phil & ChuckThe Ely Stage Stop was a perfect venue to highlight whiskies popular during the Victorian and Stage Coach eras. As a fundraiser, the event was a huge success. The event sold out and then some, with twenty eight folks in attendance. Funds raised will be used to help support the construction of a new working blacksmith shop on the property.

Seating for Ely Stage Stop events is always limited so remember to get a ticket early when the next event is announced. It would be a shame to miss it!

The museum is located at 9921 Soda Bay Road (Hwy 281) in Kelseyville (near Clearlake Riviera). Normal hours of operation are 11:00 AM to 03:00 PM each Saturday and Sunday. Contact number for questions about volunteer work, donations of old wood for barn construction, or docent applications is (707)533-9990.

Visit www.elystagestop.com or www.lakecountyhistory.org or check out the stage stop on Facebook at www.facebook.com/elystagestop.

Fiddlers keep jamming at the Ely Stage Stop

Old-time-fiddlersStart the New Year fiddling around at the Ely Stage Stop!  The Old Time Fiddlers Association continues its monthly First Sundays Fiddlers Jam sessions hosted by the Ely Stage Stop and Country Museum on Sunday, January 5th. Fiddlers will meet in the Ely barn to perform their wonderful Americana music.

This is a free, family friendly event for all to enjoy, so bring young and old alike.  Enjoy the music with hot beverages and tasty treats.  Bring your own wine and sip it in Ely Stage Stop wine glasses that will be available for purchase. Clap your hands, tap your toes or get up and dance!

The fun begins at the museum at 11:00 a.m. with the Fiddlers playing from 1 p.m. through 3 p.m. Donations will be happily accepted to benefit the Ely Stage Stop and The Old Time Fiddlers Association. Note that rain will cancel the event during the winter months.

The stage stop is located at 9921 Soda Bay Road (Hwy 281) in Kelseyville (near Clearlake Riviera, just north of Hwy 29-Kit’s Corner). Current hours of operation are 11:00 a.m. to 03:00 p.m. each Saturday and Sunday. Visit www.elystagestop.com or www.lakecountyhistory.org, check out the stage stop on Facebook at www.facebook.com/elystagestop, or call the museum at 707-533-9990.