If this were a story you might say it has a happy ending. If it were a painting there would probably be a silver lining. Whatever the metaphor, it's simply wonderful news that the former Hesperia Art Club is back in town.


Now called the Artists of the High Desert, the club was, is and will continue to be one of the most worthwhile organizations in our community. Not only does the club provide affordable art instruction to its members, but it spreads the joy of painting to non-members as well. Previously the organization's artists participated in a program that helped adults with developmental disabilities enjoy creating art, and the club's leaders are hoping to put on a youth art event later this year.


It was very sad news in 2007 when the club announced it had to move out of its previous Hesperia location due to an increase in rent. Luckily the club was given haven in a cozy spot in the Victor Valley Museum. (Meanwhile a shop that sells tobacco products took over the club's former location.)


Although the club still is incorporated under its Hesperia name, its public name was changed to the Artists of the High Desert to reflect its move outside of Hesperia and to be more universal for all residents of the Victor Valley. Whatever its name is today, this club is a worthy and important member of the Hesperia community. Welcome back!


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How important is the revelation that HUSD school board member Anthony Riley reportedly missed a special board meeting to discuss possible layoffs to instead attend a political fundraiser whose featured speaker was Karl Rove? It's hard to say.


As a board member, Riley is in one of those positions where his every word during meetings and much of his activities outside can be scrutinized by the public. He is, after all, a public figure. While some of us (not this writer, however) may call in sick to work and then head to the beach or ski slopes, Riley can't do that as easily. One person likened his going to the meeting with the Victor Valley's Republican movers and shakers as playing hooky from work and going to a Dodger game, only to find your face broadcast to thousands of people on the Jumbotron.


Oops.


The pull to the Rove event is understandable. Like him or not, Rove is a larger-then-life figure who will certainly go down in U.S. history books as playing a pivotal role at a crucial time in our history. But Hesperia schools, which face a multi-million dollar budget deficit, are also at a crucial moment.


Riley probably should have let Rove mark his own history at the Victorville luncheon and be where his presence really mattered last week's school board meeting here in Hesperia.