Big weekend ahead for those who have tickets for the return of Atascadero’s Dancing with Our Stars. Due to COVID restrictions in the last two years, the event was postponed with the assurance that it would return, and it has!

Barbie Butz e1607969318124
Barbie Butz is an independent columnist for The Atascadero News and Paso Robles Press; you can email her at

From the sounds of things, it will be even bigger and better this year, with the addition of two more performances making a total of four. John and I will be attending the Saturday evening performance when they are scheduled to announce the winners.

I remember dancing in the very first event with Dan Davis as my professional dance partner. Other dancers that year included Joanne Main, Jay DeCou, E.J. Rossi, Giovanni and Molly Comin, Jim Lewis, Jim Patterson, Tina Wysong, and Keith Schmidt. Little did we know how popular the event would become. That year we danced to benefit the Atascadero Library expansion and now, many nonprofits benefit.

Kudos to members of the committee who kept the momentum alive and to the dancers who were “put on hold” through the pandemic. And to people like Jeannie

Malik, Molly Comin, and Frank Sanchez among others, whose organizational skills went “above and beyond.” Thank you all for bringing this wonderful performing arts event to Atascadero.

The Templeton Rotary Club will host a “Scale Down for Scholarships” Rummage Sale on Saturday, Sept. 17, from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m., at the parking lot of the Celebration Worship Center 988 Vineyard Ave. in Templeton. Donations are welcome between 6 and 8 a.m. that morning. For more information, contact Club President Nicol Zundel at (805) 459-0733. Proceeds will benefit the club’s scholarship fund for Templeton High School seniors.

P.E.O. Chapter HL in Paso Robles also has a fundraiser for scholarships for women in North San Luis Obispo County. The local chapter is a member of the nonprofit P.E.O. International, which is a sisterhood that has helped 114,000 women across North America pursue their life goals by providing over $369 million in educational assistance.

Chapter HL has put together what they call a “Star Card” offering discounts from 70+ retail partners in the area, including automotive, hardware, nursery, beverage, clothing, jewelry, floral, health, restaurants, salons, spas, and wineries.

The card is $50 and participating merchants will offer a generous 20 percent discount on selected merchandise to the cardholder. The Star Card can be used from Saturday, Oct. 1 through Monday, Oct. 31. Check the Chapter HL website, for participating merchants and offers. Star Cards are available for purchase at The Blenders, 538 12th Street, in Paso Robles, or from a member of the chapter. For more information, contact Bonnie Hewitt at (559) 901-3357.

This week’s recipe is baked in a slow cooker, making it “cooler” baking than turning on the oven on a hot day.

Sticky Caramel Pumpkin Cake


2 cups all-purpose flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

1⁄2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice or ground cinnamon

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature

1 1/3 cups sugar

4 eggs, at room temperature

1 can (15 ounces) solid-pack pumpkin

1 jar (16 ounces) caramel sauce or caramel ice cream topping

Vanilla ice cream (optional)


Coat 4 1⁄2-quart slow-cooker with nonstick cooking spray. Whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, pumpkin pie spice and salt in a large bowl. Beat batter

and sugar in separate bowl with electric mixer on high speed until light, about 3 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, beating with mixer to incorporate each egg before

adding another. Beat in pumpkin. With mixer running on low speed, carefully add flour mixture and beat until smooth. Spread evenly in stoneware insert of slow –

cooker. Cover; cook on High 2 to 21⁄2 hours or until toothpick inserted in center of cake comes out clean. Drizzle 1⁄2 cup caramel sauce over cake. Spoon into bowls and serve warm with ice cream, if desired, and drizzle with additional caramel sauce. Makes 8 servings