The Ukiah Daily Journal

Foundation hosts benefit concert

Mendocino College Foundation hosting a benefit concert for the College Coastal Field Station


The Friends of the Mendocino College Coastal Field Station and Natural Sciences, an affiliate of the Mendocino College Foundation, is excited to announce a concert with Alex de Grassi to benefit the Mendocino College Coastal Field Station. The concert is scheduled for Saturday, February 25 at 7 pm in the Little Theater on the Ukiah campus of Mendocino College.

“Our community is blessed to have such an amazing musician as Alex de Grassi,” says Dr. Steve Cardimona, professor of Earth Science at the college. Mr. de Grassi is a graduate of Earth Science from UC Berkeley where he studied economic/urban geography; however, it is his musical talents that have captivated audiences for decades.

“To have Alex share his unique talent for such an evening benefit is absolutely phenomenal!”

Among other duties, Cardimona is the point of contact at the college regarding the Coastal Field Station property at Point Arena. For over forty years, the Field Station site, with its original Coast Guard structures and surrounded by the California Coastal National Monument, has provided active learning opportunit­ies for students of the natural sciences to study marine life, the California coastal prairie ecosystem, and the many incredible geological features in the area.

“The Coastal Field Station is an exceptiona­l asset that sets Mendocino College apart from other community colleges, allowing for unique opportunit­ies where students can perform exciting hands-on activities and be exposed to scientific research,” Cardimona explains. “In addition, on-site dorms and kitchen

amenities allow for overnight and multi-day trips, adding an element of community bonding for the students that cannot be achieved in the classroom.

“However, along with the benefits of using such facilities comes the responsibi­lity of maintainin­g the buildings and grounds. There are a lot of repairs and deferred maintenanc­e to address.”

The Friends of the Mendocino College Coastal Field Station and Natural Sciences was created to assist with fundraisin­g for renovation­s at the Coastal Field Station. Since 2015, community donations of funds and volunteer time have supported projects both large and small, from the simple replacemen­t of room heating and kitchen cooking appliances to the installati­on of new roofs on all 4 dorm houses. Other recent donor-funded projects include updating the electrical systems in the education building and well house, site cleanup to improve access, and well-water system rehabilita­tion.

“With such amazing community support, we have been able to accomplish a lot over the last few years,” Cardimona says. “There is still a lot more work to do, though!”

In 2019 the Friends of the Field Station embarked on a capital campaign with a goal to raise $250K. In the summer of 2022, the halfway point toward that goal was reached, and a special donation of $25K by Robert Blanc jump-started the second half of the campaign.

“I see this concert with Alex de Grassi as both a celebratio­n of the 40+ years of college stewardshi­p over the unique coastal property as well as a chance to reach out to the community with a special event to highlight our Friends group and the work we have been doing to support natural science students at Mendocino College,” Cardimona notes.

“I cannot think of a more memorable way to do this than through an evening with Alex de Grassi!”

Alex de Grassi has been a unique voice in the world of acoustic guitar for the past 40-plus years and his solo steel-string guitar recordings have influenced a generation of younger players. He has performed in concert venues and festivals around the world including Carnegie Hall, the Kennedy Center, Montreux Jazz Festival, Belfast Internatio­nal Festival, and the Bath Guitar Festival. The Wall Street Journal has called his playing “flawless” and Billboard hails his “intricate fingerpick­ing technique with an uncanny gift for melodic invention.” His debut 1978 recording, Turning: Turning Back (cited by Acoustic Guitar magazine among their top ten essential fingerstyl­e recordings), and the subsequent recordings Slow Circle (1979) and Southern Exposure (1984), and his GRAMMY® nominated recording The Water Garden (1998) are considered classics of the solo guitar genre. In addition, he has received commission­s to compose and score for film. A California native, Alex currently lives in Mendocino County.

Advance tickets can be purchased online at­siconcert or at the Mendocino Book Company in Ukiah for $30. Tickets at the door will be $40 (cash or check only). Proceeds from the event will go to the nonprofit Friends of the Mendocino College Coastal Field Station and Natural Sciences for the upgrade and improvemen­t of the Coastal Field Station near Point Arena. If you would like to contribute to the capital campaign visit Thank you for your support. Any questions can be directed to Julie Mcgovern, Foundation Executive Director, at 707468-3164 or

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