California exports, which include wines from Ironstone Vineyards in Murphys, at left, dipped in July after 32 straight months of year-over-year increases. New figures are expected Thursday. Randall Benton Bee file, 2011

This Week: Will gas prices go down this week?

Published: Monday, Oct. 8, 2012 - 12:00 am | Page 1B
Last Modified: Monday, Oct. 8, 2012 - 6:03 am

One prominent analyst said this week may bring some relief for California drivers, who were slammed by a sudden spike in gas prices late last week. When stations opened Friday, the average price statewide had jumped 17 cents overnight - to $4.48 a gallon, according to AAA.

In Sacramento, the price ballooned 16 cents in 24 hours to $4.36 amid tight supplies.

Patrick DeHaan, senior petroleum analyst at, said about a half-dozen stations in the Los Angeles area were charging more than $5 a gallon for gas. Some gas stations in Southern California ran out of gas and opted to shut down.

At the Low-P station in Calabasas, handwritten signs saying "We are sorry, it is not our fault" hung from pumps with a per-gallon price of $5.69, the Los Angeles Times reported.

Prices in California were already high before last week's jump, partly because an Aug. 6 fire at a key Chevron refinery in Richmond cut into production. Additional problems at refineries in Southern California further pinched supply, analysts said.

DeHaan predicted prices would ease this week, though, since wholesale gasoline prices already were headed down Friday.

- Mary Lynne Vellinga

In the news

Should pot growers be forced inside?

On Tuesday, the Sacramento City Council will discuss whether to craft an ordinance requiring people growing medical marijuana for their personal use in residential areas to grow it inside.

The council also will discuss how large a buffer zone should be required between dispensaries and sensitive areas such as schools, parks and churches.

Behind the news: Currently, medical marijuana users are allowed to grow their personal pot outside, but the practice has prompted complaints because of the plants' strong odor and the possibility of attracting criminals.

A federal crackdown on dispensaries has prompted many landlords to force their tenants to move. Dispensaries say they're having a hard time finding locations to comply with the city's buffer requirements.

Stay informed: Check for updates.

U.S. Air Force band to perform Tuesday

The U.S. Air Force Band of the Golden West will perform a free concert from 7 to 9 p.m. Tuesday at the Sacramento Community Center Theater, 1301 L St.

Behind the news: In 1959, the band made up the Air Force component of the NORAD Command Band. It changed its name in 1997.

Stay informed:


Can California exports rebound?

A 32-month streak of year-over-year gains in California's export trade was broken in July. The downturn was blamed on economic problems in Europe and suddenly slowing economies in China and Mexico, both primary destinations for California-made goods. On Thursday, the U.S. Commerce Department will report national export figures for August, and Beacon Economics will break down the California numbers.

Stay informed: Check for results.


Battles for league titles on horizon

The San Francisco Giants and Oakland A's resume their respective league division series Tuesday. The Giants will travel to Cincinnati for Game 3 of the National League Division Series, while the A's will host Detroit in the third game of the American League Division Series. If the A's win their series, they will advance to the League Championship Series beginning Saturday against either the Baltimore Orioles or New York Yankees. If the Giants win their series, they will play in the NLCS beginning Sunday against either the St. Louis Cardinals or Washington Nationals.

Stay informed: Check for results and schedules.

For a good cause

'Truckin' on the River' benefits parkway

Music and mobile food will be featured during a "Truckin' on the River" event to benefit the American River Parkway. More than a dozen food trucks are expected to be selling their wares from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday at William B. Pond Park. A portion of the proceeds from each food truck will be donated to the American River Parkway Foundation. Among the participating trucks scheduled to be selling: OMG Burger, Squeeze Inn, Leila's Lumpia, Off the Mapp Mobile Espresso, Wicked 'Wich and Willie's Burgers.

Stay informed: The entry fee of $5, plus service fee, can be purchased at Tickets are $8 at the door.

Around town

PlacerGROWN theme of the week in county

Children who think apples, eggs and milk come in bags, boxes and bottles are in for an eye-opening experience in Placer County this week. Adults, too, are invited to celebrate "PlacerGROWN Week," proclaimed by county supervisors for today through Sunday to highlight local farmers' and ranchers' products. Events will include a Farmers Market at the Fountains in Roseville from 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Tuesday, a Wine and Food Festival in Auburn from 1 to 6 p.m. Saturday, and a Farm and Barn Open House from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday. The open house is a free, self-guided tour of various farms in the county.

Details and maps to participating farm sites are available at; tickets for Auburn's Wine and Food Festival, which will have 25 wineries and 25 restaurants celebrating the harvest, can be purchased at

Catch the aloha spirit Saturday at Cal Expo

Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander entertainment, cooking and hula competitions and more cultural fun can be found at the Sacramento Aloha Festival from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday at Cal Expo. There will also be exhibits, arts and crafts and food. Festival visitors are invited to bring donations of nonperishable food items for Senior Gleaners. Admission is free. Parking is $10 per car.


Need a bike? Bid at UC Davis auction

Seeking to bid on a bike? The public is invited to attend the biannual UC Davis Bicycle Auction on Saturday. More than 400 bicycles will be available for sale to the highest bidder inside the West Entry Parking Structure at Hutchinson Drive and Dairy Road. The bikes may be viewed from 8 to 9 a.m., with bidding beginning at 9 a.m. and lasting until all items are sold. Parking is free for the auction.

Stay informed: (530) 752-2453 or

Raise a glass at the Sake Fest

Sample the best sake from Japan, plus food from area restaurants Wednesday at the eighth annual Sake Fest at the Sheraton Grand Hotel, 1230 J St., in Sacramento. There will also be a live tuna-cutting display on stage and dozens of vendor booths. A silent auction will be featured, proceeds of which will benefit UC Davis Children's Hospital.

Stay informed:

Turn Verein hosts annual Oktoberfest

The Sacramento Turn Verein's 45th annual Oktoberfest will feature traditional German music, food, dancing and drink at Turner Hall, 3349 J St. The celebration on Friday and Saturday is modeled after the famous Oktoberfest in Munich. Bands will include the traditional Gruber Family Band and the rock band AKA Live.

Stay informed:

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