community

This community survived the Glass fire, though its homes didn’t

There were 13 sweet, simple, wood-heated homes at Monan’s Rill, the intentional community on 414 gorgeous acres off St. Helena Road.

The Glass fire left just one. That surviving house was hand-built in the early 1970s by two co-founders of the residential collective, the extraordinary Mary and Russ Jorgensen.

In addition to helping to create Monan’s Rill, the Jorgensens, both former Freedom Riders, were stalwarts of the Peace and Justice Center of Sonoma County and undaunted champions of a better world.

They were for almost 30 years cherished by fellow residents of Monan’s Rill who’ve from the start worked together for the good of the land they inhabit and the community that they’ve run by consensus.

The Jorgensens were among four Quaker families that founded Monan’s Rill after having lived in the Berkeley hills with no fences between their yards so they could rear their kids communally. When they bought the land off St. Helena Road, the creek that ran through it was called Monan’s Rill, that name having been borrowed from a poem by Sir Walter Scott.

Russ and Mary savored their lives there until about 20 years ago, when they moved to Nevada City to be closer to their children. Russ was 92 when he died in 2009. Mary died in 2014 at 98.

Were they still alive and still at Monan’s Rill, they might feel about the same today as their heartbroken but resolute former neighbor, Penny Sirota.

“We’re doing about as well as we possibly can,” said Sirota, who’s lived for 28 years at Monan’s Rill. “It’s hard for us all to be scattered.”

“We’re just trying to figure out our next step,” she said.

As the Glass fire roared in from Napa County, it consumed all of the homes except the one the Jorgensens built,

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Havenpark Communities hosts grand re-opening at Brookwood Estates to celebrate community improvements

West Fargo Mayor and City Commissioner Visit Newly Renovated Havenpark Property

West Fargo City commissioner, Mandy George; Havepark Communities Divisional Vice President, Sean King; and West Fargo City Mayor, Bernie Dardis pose in front of the newly installed Brookwood Estates monument sign.
West Fargo City commissioner, Mandy George; Havepark Communities Divisional Vice President, Sean King; and West Fargo City Mayor, Bernie Dardis pose in front of the newly installed Brookwood Estates monument sign.
West Fargo City commissioner, Mandy George; Havepark Communities Divisional Vice President, Sean King; and West Fargo City Mayor, Bernie Dardis pose in front of the newly installed Brookwood Estates monument sign.

Brookwood Estates Ribbon Cutting Ceremony

Residents and staff at Brookwood Estates gather over food and entertainment to celebrate their community's relaunch. Masks and sanitization were provided for all attendees.
Residents and staff at Brookwood Estates gather over food and entertainment to celebrate their community’s relaunch. Masks and sanitization were provided for all attendees.
Residents and staff at Brookwood Estates gather over food and entertainment to celebrate their community’s relaunch. Masks and sanitization were provided for all attendees.

Brookwood Estates Community Pride

Residents at Brookwood Estates take pride in their community and strive to make their community a beautiful place to live in.
Residents at Brookwood Estates take pride in their community and strive to make their community a beautiful place to live in.
Residents at Brookwood Estates take pride in their community and strive to make their community a beautiful place to live in.

New Community Clubhouse

Havenpark Communities has invested over $1.3 million in community updates at Brookwood Estates. Among these updates include a new community clubhouse.
Havenpark Communities has invested over $1.3 million in community updates at Brookwood Estates. Among these updates include a new community clubhouse.
Havenpark Communities has invested over $1.3 million in community updates at Brookwood Estates. Among these updates include a new community clubhouse.

New Roads at Brookwood Estates

Havenpark Communities has invested over $1.3 million in community updates at Brookwood Estates. Among these updates include newly paved roads.
Havenpark Communities has invested over $1.3 million in community updates at Brookwood Estates. Among these updates include newly paved roads.
Havenpark Communities has invested over $1.3 million in community updates at Brookwood Estates. Among these updates include newly paved roads.

New Homes at Brookwood Estates

Since taking ownership of Brookwood Estates in 2019, Havenpark Communities has actively sold and leased new homes to residents.
Since taking ownership of Brookwood Estates in 2019, Havenpark Communities has actively sold and leased new homes to residents.
Since taking ownership of Brookwood Estates in 2019, Havenpark Communities has actively sold and

Community opens in Celina with homes priced from $300s

Cambridge Companies, developer of the award-winning Mustang Lakes in southeastern Celina, has opened its newest Celina community on the west side of the Dallas North Tollway. Cambridge Crossing offers access to the Frisco, Plano and North Dallas employment and entertainment districts.

Mustang Lakes, the community named Best Master-Planned Community in DFW by the Dallas Builders Association in 2018 and awarded The Best Amenity in the Nation at The Nationals in Las Vegas last year, is having its best sales year ever, despite the pandemic.

“Mustang Lakes continues to see strong sales, as prospective buyers recognize the quality of the development and its outstanding mix of amenities. They are also seeking Prosper ISD schools, including the state-of-the-art Sam Johnson Elementary School, which opened this fall,” said Matt Alexander, vice president of Cambridge Companies.

The development team at Cambridge has designed the same world-class level community at Cambridge Crossing, located just north of Punk Carter and just west of the Tollway, said a company spokesperson. Cambridge Crossing will feature a classic English theme with seven lakes, trails, a resort pool complex, parks, playgrounds, fishing, pickleball courts, half-court basketball and a fitness center planned in the 6,700-square-foot clubhouse.

When complete, the community will feature landscaping, detailed wrought-iron gates, low stone walls and formal gardens with hedgerows. Models are already open and selling. The amenity center and pools will break ground soon and open next year.

Cambridge Crossing’s builder lineup includes Coventry Homes, Highland Homes, Perry Homes and UnionMain Homes. Prices will range from the $300s to the $600s.

“Don’t miss this opportunity to get the best choice of homesites and the best prices while interest rates are still extremely low,” said the spokesperson.

To visit Cambridge Crossing, take the Dallas North Tollway north past State Highway 380 into Celina and turn left on

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Urban wildfire: When homes are the fuel for a runaway blaze, how do you rebuild a safer community?

TALENT, Oregon — Late morning on Sept. 8, forest scientist Dominick DellaSala sat at the desk in his home office to do a final edit on a newspaper opinion piece. The topic: The need to better prepare for catastrophic wildfires — or “black swan events” — that can rampage through neighborhoods.

His computer screen went dark. The power had gone out.

He went outside to investigate the outage. Looking south, he spotted a dense cloud of smoke.

“This was totally black. It was huge. And it was heading in our direction,” DellaSala recalls.

DellaSala spent the next few hours up on his roof, cleaning out gutters and hosing down the asphalt shingles before evacuating. His home was spared as the fire veered away from his street, but more than 2,800 structures and three people were killed in one of the most destructive wildfires in Northwest history.

Forest scientist Dominick DellaSala surveys the field near  a dog park that was the ignition point for the Almeda Fire, one of the most destructive in Oregon’s history. (Hal Bernton / The Seattle Times)
Forest scientist Dominick DellaSala surveys the field near a dog park that was the ignition point for the Almeda Fire, one of the most destructive in Oregon’s history. (Hal Bernton / The Seattle Times)

This one had nothing to do the management of thickly forested Northwest mountain slopes. It started in a patch of grass by a dog park in the north end of Ashland on a hot day with fierce, dry winds. The fire raced through a county greenway park, chewed through roadside brush and jumped into the heart of two communities — Talent and Phoenix, with a combined population of more than 10,000. Then houses, trailers and commercial buildings became the fuel that fed its relentless advance.

In the immediate aftermath of the historic early September fires, people here and in other ravaged Pacific Northwest towns such as Malden, in Eastern Washington, are primarily focused on the need to find short-term shelter

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Highland Homes builds in NorthGrove community

Highland Homes is proud to be a part of the builder line up in the community of NorthGrove.

In proximity to The Woodlands, NorthGrove is located near major employers and transportation corridors and is zoned to the Magnolia ISD. With more than 200 acres of green space, towering cedars, pines and cypress trees, the residents live among the natural beauty of the Montgomery County area. This community features a spacious clubhouse with resort-style amenities including a pool, fitness center, children’s play area, dog park, on-site lifestyle director and full calendar or resident events.

Highland Homes has homes starting from the $270,000s and currently has five move-in ready homes that will be ready for the holidays with three, four and five bedroom options. Buyers can also build their own home with 14 home plans and 10 available homesites (including cul-de-sac lots). Buyers can schedule an appointment to tour the inventory homes or visit the model home at 8113 Triumph Bend Way in Magnolia.

Founded in 1985, Highland Homes is an employee-owned company that builds approximately 2,800 homes annually throughout Texas and is consistently ranked among the top new homebuilders in the nation. This year, Highland Homes was recognized by the Houston Chronicle readers as the Best of the Best Home Builder and is frequently listed among top builders by J.D. Power and Associates. Highland has been recognized for its energy-efficient building measures, earning an Excellence in Energy Performance Award for building 28 percent above minimum Energy Star specifications.

For more information, call Tony Norris at 281-517-9874, email [email protected] or visit online at www.Highlandhomes. com.

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