Stonyford Man Honors Stonyford History
Shortly after taking a job with the US Forestry Service to work in the Mendocino National Forest, Jeff Applegate found the small town to be welcoming and has called Stonyford home for the last 30 years.
Retired from the forestry service, Applegate stays active working an assortment of different jobs, so it’s hard to assign an occupation to his endeavors. He is a Library Aide at the Stonyford branch of the Colusa County Public Library, the Caretaker at the Stonyford Cemetery and is contracted to maintain the landscaping in the Century Ranch development and around the area.
When Applegate isn’t working, he expresses his artistic side by creating metalwork silhouette cut-outs. A project in which Applegate calls a labor.
Applegate remembers Stonyford to be surprisingly similar to the town in which he relocated from, Trimmer, California. Trimmer is a small town near the Pine Flat Reservoir in Fresno County.
“I didn’t expect it to seem so familiar, and I didn’t feel like I had to learn something new coming to Stonyford,” said Applegate.
Applegate is also quite the history buff. He and Joyce Bond founded and built a collection that serves as a repository for the rich history of the area, the Stonyford Museum.
Quite often, Applegate can be found talking about the Stonyford Museum with a large amount of pride. Honorably so, he not only volunteers his history research services to the community, he has hosted several educational tours in the Stonyford area.
Applegate is also a volunteer with the Colusa County Search and Rescue.
“There was a high demand for search and rescue services in our area,” said Applegate, “we received a lot of calls for lost or injured people due.”
Applegate contributed this to individuals not having the right navigation equipment and the lack of knowledge of the highly used trails.
In his spare time, Applegate enjoys relaxing near the pond behind his home at Century Ranch. He commented that Spring is his favorite time of the year in Stonyford as it brings cool temperatures and the hillsides are blooming with wildflowers.
One of Applegate’s favorites books is the ‘Famous Outlaws of the Wild West’.
“I like westerns, and I like history,” he said, “That’s why I work at the museum and do the job of researching local history.”
Applegate easily identified the Stonyford Rodeo, held the first Saturday in May, as his favorite annual event.
“This year my five-year-old granddaughter will be competing in the mutton busting event. It is her second year,” he said, “ The kids dress up as cowboys and cowgirls, and then they ride a sheep, which isn’t easy at all.”
Applegate commented that the annual Rodeo brings the community together for a common experience.
“We get some out of towners as well, but I get to see all my friends there who are really important to me,” said Applegate.
At the end of his busy day, Applegate enjoys retreating to the pod located near his home and enjoying the peacefulness that comes with living in Stonyford.