** Thumbs up to Andrew Tobin, 23, grand prize winner in the Granville Home of Hope charity fundraiser. His mother, Amy Tobin, got to deliver the good news to him that he was now the owner of a home in the Copper River Ranch community valued at more than $310,000. It's only right since she bought the ticket for him and attended the drawing. The house — 1,301 square feet with three bedrooms and two bathrooms — might be a little much for him, so his mother predicted he would prefer the $100,000 cash. The event raised $353,000.
** Thumbs up to Aaron Blair of Georgia, who has been named president and chief executive of the Downtown Fresno Partnership. He has some tall high heels to fill, replacing Kate Borders, who left in March. He is the downtown city manager in Albany, Ga., and executive director of the Albany-Doughergy Inner City Authority, which has responsibility for downtown revitalization. The Downtown Fresno Partnership, which is 3 years old, is an alliance of property owners that promotes growth and events downtown.
** Thumbs up to baseball standout Luis Ortiz of Sanger High School, who gets a $1.75 million bonus for signing with the Texas Rangers. Not a bad paycheck for a guy who graduates from high school today. On Monday, he leaves for Surprise, Ariz., to play for the Rangers' Arizona League club. Ortiz was the 30th overall pick in the draft and he was given a tour of the Rangers' ballpark this week while being introduced to the media in the Dallas area. Texas' gain is Fresno State's loss, as the Bulldogs were recruiting him as well.