Tue09162014

News

Council approves directional signs for Los Altos' Woodland Plaza

Council approves directional signs for Los Altos' Woodland Plaza


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
The Los Altos City Council last week approved the installation of two new directional signs on Foothill Expressway pointing motorists to the Woodland Plaza Shopping District.

The Los Altos City Council voted unanimou...

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Schools

New head of curriculum’s ideologies align with LASD

New head of curriculum’s ideologies align with LASD


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Edsel Clark, new Los Altos School District assistant superintendent for curriculum and instruction, above, facilitates a junior high mathematics curriculum meeting last week.

Edsel Clark, Ed.D., new assistant superintend...

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Community

Closing reception caps Foothill photo show on rural China

Closing reception caps Foothill photo show on rural China


From IncredibleTravelPhotos.com
Jacque Kae’s “Mischievous” is one of the many photographs on display at Foothill College this month.

Photographs of the land and culture of Huangshan and Zhangjiajie, China, are on exhibit through Sept. 26 at t...

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Sports

Spartans shine in opener

Spartans shine in opener


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Mountain View High’s Frank Kapp snares a touchdown pass from quarterback Owen Mountford in Friday’s win.

Leading by a point at halftime, the Mountain View High football team outscored visiting Del Mar 20-0 the rest of...

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Comment

A look ahead to the Nov. 4 election: Editorial

Election season is upon us. In Los Altos, we have three major local races ahead – two seats on the Los Altos City Council, and three seats each on the Los Altos School District and Mountain View-Los Altos Union High School District boards of tr...

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Special Sections

Renovation complete,  Villa Siena looks to future

Renovation complete, Villa Siena looks to future


Above and Below Photos Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier; Left Photo Courtesy of Villa Siena
Villa Siena in Mountain View recently underwent a $35 million face-lift. The five-year project expanded their senior living community’s space and ability to serv...

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Business

Transitioning from postage to pets

Transitioning from postage to pets


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
A new Pet Food Express store is scheduled to open at the Blossom Valley Shopping Center this month.

A site that previously existed to meet postal service needs will soon have an entirely different purpose – serving pe...

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Books

‘The Humans’ transcends alien genre to glean human insights

‘The Humans’ transcends alien genre to glean human insights


A good story about aliens is always great fun to read – after all, it’s only by attempting to understand the human race from another perspective that we can see ourselves more objectively.

But readers who might be tempted to dismiss ye...

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People

JEANNE PACKARD

After suffering a stroke in May, Jeanne Packard died August 10, 2014 at age 83. She was born in 1931 in Berlin, Germany, the only child of Emily Channel and Frank Howe Packard of Chicago, IL. Jeanne is survived by 5 great grandchildren. She was a lon...

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Travel

LA photographer spends a night with cranes – and moose – in Alaska

LA photographer spends a night with cranes – and moose – in Alaska


Sandy Powell/Special to the Town Crier
Los Altos resident and bird photographer Sandy Powell recently visited Homer, Alaska, to photograph Sandhill cranes, below. While there, Powell also encountered moose, left.

Los Altos resident Sandy Powell, a...

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Stepping Out

'Trailer Park' opens in Los Altos

'Trailer Park' opens in Los Altos


Courtesy of Los
The cast of Los Altos Stage Company’s “The Great American Trailer Park Musical” includes, from left, Mylissa Malley as Lin, Vanessa Alvarez as Betty, and Christina Bolognini as Pickles. Altos Stage Company

Los Altos Stage Company...

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Spiritual Life

9/11 survivor Michael Hingson finds purpose

Imagine walking down 78 flights of stairs – 1,463 individual steps. You are in imminent danger as you walk, unsure whether you can make it out of the building before it collapses or explodes. Struggling for each breath, you smell the heavy sten...

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Magazine

Los Altos Hills home showcases resort-inspired living

Los Altos Hills home showcases resort-inspired living


Courtesy of Spectrum Interior Design
In place of a more traditional fireplace, this modern living room features a linear-flame firebox that emits heat while offering a sculpturelike design element.

After traveling the world and visiting a host...

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New coach Plumer, two-time Olympian, pushes Eagles to succeed in cross country: Prep sports summary

Patti Sue Plumer has a racer's mentality, and that's how she approaches her new job as Los Altos High cross-country coach.

A former distance champ who competed in two Olympics, Plumer knows what it takes to succeed in the sport. That's why she is constantly challenging her Eagles to push themselves - whether it be working harder in practice or running faster in meets.

"My emphasis is on training them to race," said Plumer, who has coached at alma mater Stanford University and Menlo College. "Your muscles will hurt - it's a process of getting fit. If you don't embrace the pain, you're not going to be very good."

It's the sort of advice that's probably easier to digest when it comes from someone who once held the U.S. women's record in the 5,000-meter run.

"Because of my background, I think they're more willing to accept that way of training. They're more willing to take risks and chances," the 44-year-old said. "I want them to overcome their fears, and it helps that I've been through it."

Thus far, the coach is pleased by the team's response.

"I'm very impressed with the quality of kids - and not just their athleticism," said Plumer, who moved to Los Altos with her husband and two daughters in 2003. "They work hard and take chances. Some say they're too sore, but they do it."

Plumer has a healthy roster of 75, though only 20 of them are girls. Her top runners are Alec Nickolls on the boys' side and Caitlin Russell among the girls. Both "are doing a great job," Plumer said. At last week's Central Park Invitational in Santa Clara, they each placed fifth in their division. Nickolls finished 10 seconds faster than he did at last year's meet; Russell improved by 35 seconds.

Team-wise, Los Altos' best finish came Sept. 21 at the Saratoga Scrimmage. The boys won their division and the girls placed third.

The season will get more difficult once league begins next week, as the Eagles have been elevated to the SCVAL De Anza Division this season. Plumer, however, is not one to back away from challenges.

"Patti Sue is always successful with what she sets her mind to," said Joy Upshaw Margerum, who coached with Plumer at Menlo. "She has many good coaching workouts to share and is filled with terrific stories from the past which motivate the kids. Los Altos High is so lucky to have her as the cross country coach. She will do a great job."

A job Plumer said has been made easier by parent volunteers.

"I'd be lost without them," she said. "They've allowed me to concentrate on coaching, and I'm having a great time. I love the team."

Volleyball

Lauren Copenhagen led the Lancers with eight kills; Lexi Aiassa and Kaitlin Baxter added seven each. Nicole Merslich recorded a team-best six blocks in Saturday's title match.

St. Francis didn't lose a match in the two-day tournament and improved to 25-1 overall.

Los Altos won both its matches last week, improving to 3-1 in the SCVAL De Anza Division and 9-7 overall. The Eagles swept rival Mountain View Sept. 26 and Homestead Thursday.

Christan Schaefer was Los Altos' kill leader in both matches, notching nine against visiting Mountain View and 17 versus host Homestead. Erin Saliba had five service aces Thursday.

Field hockey

The Eagles edged Live Oak 2-1 Sept. 25 and blanked Leigh 3-0 Sept. 27.

Los Altos followed this by winning the championship at its third annual tournament over the weekend. The Eagles topped St. Ignatius 1-0 in the final on a goal by Lindsay Mott.

Girls tennis

Top singles player Maxine Lim won both her matches in straight sets. Mithys Srinivason played No. 2 singles against St. Lawrence and Liza Belagolovsky manned that spot versus Redwood Christian, with both posting straight-set victories.

Girls water polo

Lauren Wyckoff led Los Altos with six goals; Rachel Levin and Alex Kaufman added two each. Eagles goalie Cassandra Wyckoff made 11 saves and two steals.

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