If you have a child or a teenager in one of our American Canyon schools, your child's school would have been a recipient of some level of sponsorships from American Canyon Orthodontics. Its main vision is to support the City of American Canyon's events and the wide range of fundraising events at all of our 5 schools and many organized athletic leagues. All the causes they support comes down to benefiting our next generation.
I had the awesome pleasure of interviewing the gentleman who decided to plant his flag and build his successful practice in American Canyon, Dr. Jeffery Nichelini. Every once in a while, you end up meeting people with such positive core values, authenticity and warmth, you'd think you have known them for decades. In a nutshell, that's who Dr. Nichelini has become to me, and (I'm sure) to many others who have gotten to know him in this great community.
How long have you lived in American Canyon?
I opened my practice in January 2014, after 6 months of construction. Prior to this, I had been driving through American Canyon between visits to the Nichelini Winery from my previous home in San Francisco. In 2011, I decided to check out the town off Hwy 29. I wandered through the side streets, and was amazed that such an beautiful community existed in Napa County. It's only 30 minutes from SF, with great access to the water and open space. There was no orthodontist in town yet, so I started developing my plan to open the practice at that time.
What is your favorite park or open space, and why?
This is hard, I think the Bay Area is a very special place, in large part because there is so much open space with trails maintained for public access, which is a luxury not enjoyed by most places. I LOVE that Napa County is developing the Napa River Trail. I already utilize most of the open segments; I go for walks with my girlfriend after work along Wetlands Edge, and I run the segments by my house near 1st Street in Napa; South to Kennedy Park or North toward Yountville.
Can you tell us a story about your favorite park-related memory?
I helped a buddy train for an ultra marathon last year (he ran 100 miles in 24 hours). The month before the big event, we decided to run through Newell Open Space, but it was close to dark and I was over ambitious regarding how much distance we could cover with the remaining daylight, and over confident with my knowledge of the trail system. Long story short...12 miles later, we were bushwhacking in complete darkness somewhere behind the high school, hoping desperately to find our way back to the picnic benches. To make matters worse, I stepped in a mud hole and lost a shoe! Not tons of fun in the moment, but funny in retrospect. I bring a flashlight with me now when I run at night.
If you could visit any National Park, where would you go and why?
They're all on my list. I had some friends visit Glacier National over the summer, and I'm totally jealous of the pictures they brought back; that coupled with the fact that the glaciers are receding make it a priority to get to soon.
What is your favorite outdoor activity?
Hiking or running for now. I like to say I "aspire" to do many things, like fish, golf, snowboard, or rock-climb, but I'm kind of a tooth nerd and a workaholic, so I haven't made pursuing those hobby's a priority... YET!
If you could be any piece of outdoor play equipment, what would you be and why?
You could probably do some sort of Freudian analysis of a person based on their response to this question.
You are correct, he did not answer this question so we won't get to analyze him today. :)
What are the benefits you see to being outdoors?
The benefits are hard facts. Getting outside leads to exercise, which leads to cardiovascular health and strength. Exposure to moderate amounts of sunlight are good for vitamin D production, exposure to dirt helps develop the immune system, and it gets people away from screens (i.e. TV or smart phones). Also, I think it teaches people to appreciate their environment.
What would you like to tell future generations about parks and health?
Go explore the parks in the area are vast and full of cool things: waterfalls, lakes, wild-animals, etc. If you see an open space, there is probably a trail - go see what you can find.
What is your vision for parks in American Canyon?
ACCPF is doing it right. Keep it up! If I could suggest a project, it would be to add an outdoor fitness area near the Wetlands. San Francisco added one near my previous home in the Marina, and it was used constantly.
Why did you choose to support the American Canyon Community and Parks Foundation by becoming a member?
Kasama told me I should. Just kidding! I am a huge proponent of the concept that improving community resources dramatically improves quality of life in the community. Using the mantra "if you build it, they will come"; American Canyon is blessed to have a group taking the initiative improve its public spaces. Adding drinking fountains, bathrooms, park benches, bocce courts, etc. makes the spaces we have more enjoyable, encourages more people to utilize them, and brings neighbors together to improve our overall sense of community. American Canyon Orthodontics supports many organizations in town, and our hope is that by contributing to these organizations we contribute to making American Canyon an awesome place to live.
Being such a champion of our youth that he is through all of his supports, I had to sneak in one last question.
If there was a message you could give our youth, what would it be?
Be cool, stay in school. Brush your teeth! Whatever it is that you do, doing homework or cleaning your room, work hard and get the job done. Small things matter and they build your character traits.
Thank you, Dr. Nich, for your time, and all that you and your team do to pour into this fortunate community always with a big smile on your faces. If you haven't visited American Canyon Orthodontics, feel free to stop by and just say "Hi" even if no one needs braces in your family. It's one of the friendliest business places you'll find in American Canyon. Ask for Christine Barnett, his office manager. She'll make you feel at home!
American Canyon Orthodontics
3419 Broadway, Suite 1, American Canyon, CA 94503