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Show us all what you did on vacation
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It's hardly a secret that things slow down for community newspapers in the summer months.

It's the perfect time of year to get away and let the Courier have some fun after you come back. I'm talking about our annual invitation for you, the reader, to share some photos of where you went and what you did on summer vacation.

In this so-so economy, there's a pressure on people to tell themselves that they cannot afford a vacation. Those of us who work, however, simply can't afford to not take a vacation either. People who don't take vacations are only punishing themselves and shortening their lives. And they often take it out on everybody else.

Like the next person, I can get stuck on the treadmill of work, work, work and not want to get off for fear that they won't be able to "get along without me." I have a few trip ideas this year myself. Last Thursday I felt on top of the world as I journeyed to the top of Sentinel Dome in Yosemite with my love.

Even if it's not in the cards to take a cruise or travel to Europe or Hawaii, our area is rife with places to visit for one- and two-day trips. We really have a great offering of places to visit. I'm dumbfounded at all the locals who have not visited Yosemite National Park for years - or ever. It has to be the most gorgeous place on earth, and it's located in our backyard. There's Columbia State Historic Park and Gold Rush towns of Jackson, Sutter Creek, Jamestown, Mariposa and Sonora. In Stanislaus County there's the fun of rafting down the Stanislaus River from Knights Ferry or hikes in the Del Puerto Canyon on the west side. We're a short hop from the coastal communities of Monterey, Carmel, Aptos, Half Moon Bay and others.

In Sacramento one can take advantage of seeing the state Capitol, Sutter's Fort and the Leland Stanford Mansion.
All the excitement of the casinos at Tahoe, Reno and Carson City are up the hill from there.

This is not to even mention all the things that one could find to do in San Francisco, truly the most metropolitan place in Central California.

If you go on vacation, come back and do something for us. Teach us all how to have a vacation. Here's how: Years ago I struck upon the novel idea of inviting readers of the Courier to send us their vacation photos to be printed. It was probably the best idea I came up with. Photos poured in from lots of people illustrating their idea of a vacation. We saw kids in front of Mount Rushmore, parents in Hawaii and the family in front of the Grand Canyon.

It created great readership. Seeing how your friends and neighbors spend their summer months was a great thing.

Over the years, subsequent calls for vacation photos produced less of a response.

I again invite our readers to submit their favorite vacation photos to be published in the Courier absolutely free. You just might inspire the rest of us to take your lead and try out your vacation spot.

I only ask that you only submit recent vacation photos.
If you've taken digital photos, great. Simply e-mail the photo(s) to Please tell me who is in the photo, where you're at, when you were there and anything else that may be interesting about the trip.
Please consider sharing your vacation photos with us.

How do you feel? Let Jeff know by emailing him at