KTVU shined a well deserved spotlight on Clayton when the small town was the focus of Mornings on 2 Zip Trips last week.
The hour-long show was broadcast live from The Grove park where anchors Gasia Mikaelian and Frank Mallicoat and meteorologist Steve Paulson were joined by scores of locals eager to celebrate what Vice-mayor Julie Pierce says is a “little bit of paradise.”
The show opened with a quick look at the town’s long history. The town was named in 1857 for Joel Clayton, who, as legend has it, won naming rights in a coin toss with Charles Rhine. Had he lost, it would have been Rhineville.
A segment on local hotspots featured La Veranda and Ed’s Mudville Grill in “Taste of the Town” and noted the storied Clayton Club Saloon is the oldest continuously operating saloon in California.
But it was bocce that stole the show. The newly renovated Ipsen Family Bocce Park, named for Skipolini’s founder Skip Ipsen, is a collaboration between the Ipsen family and the Clayton Business and Community Association. CBCA member Ed Hartley was named KTVU’s Hometown Hero for his efforts in organizing the park, which is run and maintained by volunteers. The park opened in 2014 and recently underwent a major renovation.
“This community is run by volunteers,” Pierce told Mikaelian. “Every good activity you see in this town is done by volunteers. We have a small budget and that’s how things get done.” Mikaelian heralded Clayton as a “can-do” city throughout the program.
With scores of locals in the park and milling throughout town, it almost felt like a holiday. Residents set up lounge chairs in the park, the CVCHS drum band and the Cheer teams practiced in the background while the local band, The Relyks, kept things moving from the gazebo.
The celebratory mood was a welcome relief and a “return to normal” after a recent controversial social media post by a local deli owner garnered national attention and sparked an anti-racism rally earlier this month.