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Playhouse Merced’s 'Oliver' —a delightful production!

By Beverly Barela
November 27, 2014

Playhouse Merced’s production of "Oliver", Lionel Bart’s musical adaptation of Charles Dickens’ novel, Oliver Twist, is delightful, including many beautiful songs well-performed.
The opening scene shows the pathetic plight of orphans in 1830's London workhouses where a small bowl of gruel is their mainstay and they can only imagine what it would be like to eat a steak ("Food, Glorious Food").

Every homeless person has a story ...

By Jonathan Whitaker
November 27, 2014

Jeff Martinez of Merced is 47, and he has been living homeless for at least two years.
A victim of diabetes, he is missing his lower left leg and the toes on his right foot. He says he is on a waiting list in an appeal process to receive Social Security disability funds. He says that a monthly SSI check would be his best bet to get off the streets, which he would really like to do someday soon.
When asked about his condition or past, Martinez feels stress, gets a little nervous and for moments, even confused. He says it hasn't been easy for him since his mom died of cancer in 2012. He was caring for her, and they were living in a house, and her death was a traumatic experience. Six years before that, the strongest man in his life, his dad, passed away, and that also left a powerful mark on Martinez' seemingly gentle spirit.
Admittedly, this wasn't an overly long interview between Martinez and the County Times. But it didn't take long for his eyes to fill up with tears when he started to remember his parents.

What’s It Like When The Hurricane Hits?

By John Derby
November 27, 2014

In September, when the hurricane hit Baja California, it was rated the worse in 50 years, flooding the town of Mulege, and the beaches along the coast of the Sea of Cortez, where our Mexican home sits, 100 feet from the water’s edge.   MORE>

Merced news reported weekly and updated each Thursday.  To submit your news story, please email or call the Merced County Times at 209 345 8090.

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