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Read all of the PD's fire coverage here

Steve Azevedo and Jeanne Miskel will need all sorts of things once they have a house to replace the one that burned five weeks ago.

But the friends who treated the Santa Rosa couple to a “fire shower” on Sunday knew better than to load them down with a bunch of stuff.

Instead, friends of the couple since the early 1970s, when Steve attended Cardinal Newman High School and Jeanne the neighboring Ursuline High, brought them a surplus Cardinal Newman yearbook from 1972, the year Steve graduated. And also a scrapbook of old photos identical or virtually so to many that burned.

About a dozen former Cardinal Newman and Ursuline classmates brought together by fire-shower host Matt Smith gave Steve and Jeanne pictures copied from yearbooks and snapshots from all sorts of events and reunions and such from the past 40-plus years.

There were pictures from weddings that Steve or Jeanne or both attended, softball games played by Newman and Ursuline alums, Halloween and birthday parties.

Just such photographs are what Steve and Jeanne mourned most since the fire.

“To have those memories back,” marveled Steve. “You can’t put a price tag on that, can you?”

.....

ARIEL & MR. BURNS stand ready to entertain and delight us, and perhaps for a couple of hours, take our minds off the fires.

Two stage plays inspired by animation characters beckon us at what could scarcely be a better time.

SRJC’s fabulous theater department presents “The Little Mermaid” starting Friday. The college’s Burbank Auditorium is being remodeled, so all performances will be across Santa Rosa in the theater at Maria Carrillo High School.

Playing the part of the mermaid Ariel is Ellie Condello, who attended Sebastopol’s Analy High and was coached by the newly retired, near-legendary Starr Hergenrather.

Ellie has photos of herself, as a kid, dressed as Ariel for multiple Halloweens.

“I connect with her because she is a dreamer,” she said.

Speaking of Analy, its theater department is in the midst of staging “Mr. Burns: A Post-Electric Play.”

It will be performed in Analy’s classic theater Thursday, Friday and Saturday.

Directed by Starr Hergenrather’s successor, Jonathan Mazer, “Mr Burns” is a thoughtful and dark comedy that sets off with the survivors of an apocalyptic event gathering and trying to recount a particular episode of “The Simpsons.”

.....

THE GARAGE NON-SALE is on for this coming Saturday.

Diane Madero conceived the concept: Residents of several neighborhoods collect furniture and bedding and such, and on a given day set it all out for pickup by people who lost their homes and belongings to the fires and are now or will soon be furnishing temporary or permanent residences.

Diane is working with 10 people in Santa Rosa and Windsor who’ll host garage or lawn giveaways to start at 9 a.m. Saturday. Of course, they ask that the furniture, accessories, TVs, dishes, tools and other items be taken only by people whose homes were burned.

Diane still is refining the list of locations. She’ll get it to me in time to go into Thursday’s column.

Chris Smith is at 707-521-5211 and chris.smith@pressdemocrat.com.

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