The media has its faults, but we need it more than ever

A letter from our new editor, a local gathering place during the Russia-Ukraine war, a Sacramento photographer documents life in Ukraine & more

Happy June! We’re hoping to stave off triple-digit heat for as long as possible, and looking forward to a month of Pride and Juneteenth celebrations.

Speaking of celebrating diversity, we have two web stories this week related to the local Ukrainian community. (According to a Sacramento Bee analysis of U.S. Census data, the Sacramento region is home to nearly 70,000 people from the former Soviet Union, the largest portion of whom are Ukrainian.) We taste our way through the newly reopened and renamed East European restaurant Noroc (FKA “Firebird”), and have an in-depth conversation with a Sacramento-based photographer who’s spent the last few months documenting life in war-torn Ukraine. 

Also on the docket: a critical check-in on the state of journalism from our new editor.

Here’s the latest Capital Region Rundown:

Judy Farah writes her first opening letter as Comstock’s editor on the importance of journalistic integrity and unbiased reporting; a longstanding Russian eatery in Carmichael that was forced to rename itself to avoid a lawsuit seizes the opportunity to reintroduce itself with a fresh space; a Sacramento-based lifestyle photographer ventures to her native country of Ukraine to volunteer and document the refugee experience; and California growers and ranchers struggle against dry conditions as they weather a third year of drought.

Recommendations from our editors:

In this section we editors share what we’re reading, listening to, watching or even eating. Here’s what we’re consuming this week:

Vanessa: It’s (nearly) summer in Sacramento, which means the corn and poblano chile pizza is back at Majka Pizzeria! This spicy pie is great hand-held grub for a picnic or backyard hang, paired perfectly with a chilled white to cool off the heat lingering from the bite and hanging in the valley air. And don’t forget to put in an order for their epic chocolate chunk miso cookies. Comstock’s spoke with the owners of Majka in 2020 for a story on vegan and vegetarian eateries.

Judy: Looks like a lot of people are going to see Tom Cruise in “Top Gun: Maverick,” the movie sequel that came out 36 years after the original. “Top Gun: Maverick” broke a box office record for Memorial Day with a whopping $156 million in ticket sales. Did you know the final scene was filmed in Lake Tahoe in 2018? The film’s release was postponed several times due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Here’s some background on the Lake Tahoe film location and how it was altered for the movie. 

Jennifer: Last week at the Sofia, I saw the world premiere of “A Great Migration,” a play by Preston Choi about three half-Korean, half-Irish brothers on a road trip to find their missing dad and also see their mom’s TEDx talk on monarch butterflies. The stellar cast made the madcap plot feel real, and it was refreshing to see a work of fiction delve seriously into mixed-race identity. The playwright is based in Chicago and the cast flew in from across the country, but Sacramento (where mixed-race people are the fastest-growing ethnic group) was the perfect place for the premiere.

Odds and ends

We are delighted and honored to have received 17 California Journalism Awards for categories spanning writing, art direction, reporting and more! We’ll be posting to the web a list of our staff and contributors’ winning stories soon. 

Don’t forget to subscribe to the magazine to stay up to date on the region’s business trends, and follow us on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn for daily stories and extras.

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