California Sun

Happy Sunday.

Here are a few stories you missed in the California Sun over the last week.

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Sun sampler


Flames tore through Sequoia National Park on Tuesday.

David McNew/Getty Images

Standing in a cloud of wildfire smoke in Sequoia National Park on Thursday, Gov. Gavin Newsom signed a $15 billion climate package for California, the largest such investment in state history. Part of the money, he said, would fund forest management measures such as tree thinning and prescribed burns aimed at stopping blazes before they start. "The answer can't just be more Cal Fire engines," he said. Visalia Times-Delta | A.P.

Sequoia National Park's most famous giant sequoias have so far survived wildfires sweeping through the park, but the fate of remote groves remains unknown. Mercury News | Fresno Bee


In early July, Newsom stood at the edge of a shriveled lake and pleaded with Californians to cut their water use by 15%. At the time, all but 5% of the state was gripped by "severe drought" or worse. Still, Newsom stopped short of making the cuts mandatory. "We’re not trying to be oppressive,” he said. New data has now revealed how people responded: Water usage statewide was down 1.8% in July compared with the same period in 2020. In Los Angeles and San Diego, it increased. CalMatters | L.A. Times

Petaluma down 25%; Poway up 14%. See how much your water district's usage changed. Mercury News


A dish from Dija Mara in Oceanside.

Indonesian nasi goreng in Oceanside. Pakistani kebabs in Fullerton. Addictive pizzas in Aptos.

Aside from its fine dining focus, the storied Michelin guide also honors Bib Gourmand restaurants, those where you can order two courses and a glass of wine for under $40. Its latest edition includes 147 California restaurants, 45 of them newcomers, scattered from San Diego to wine country.

See the 45 new Bib Gourmands here: Michelin

And 133 past honorees here: Michelin


Karen Ann Sydow

A poignant obituary written by an Oxnard man for his sister was just 189 words, but it became an internet phenomenon seen by millions. Karen Ann Sydow died on Sept. 5 at age 61. She had cerebral palsy and could speak just a few words, yet she “never had wants or misgivings,” wrote Erik Sydow. "Karen," he added, "I wish I could have made you laugh one more time. I needed you too." L.A. Times | Legacy


One event involves getting a horse to slide on its back legs for as long a distance as possible.

In the Central Valley, female equestrians in stunning traditional costumes compete in a synchronized horseback ballet — all while riding sidesaddle. The events, known as charreadas, are popular in Mexico, but also thrive in diaspora communities. This dispatch from the tiny town of Snelling includes fantastic photos and video: National Geographic


The sunrise from Lovers Point in Pacific Grove.

Danita Delimont

At the southern end of Monterey Bay, a peninsula curls out into the ocean in such a way that part of the shore faces east. That makes it among a few places along the California coast where you can watch the sun rise over the Pacific. Thrillist included the beach, Lovers Point, in an end-of-summer list of California's most beautiful places "you never knew existed."


A rendering of the Star.

MAD Architects

Developers want to build this fantastical, $500 million office tower in Hollywood. Dubbed the Star, the glass-skinned structure would rise 22 stories and contain garden levels open to the elements and an enclosed landscaped rooftop with a restaurant. A funicular tram would travel up and down the sides. L.A. Times | Archinect


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The California Sun is written by Mike McPhate, a former California correspondent for the New York Times.

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