Mon09222014

News

Meet the Mountain View City Council candidates

Meet the Mountain View City Council candidates


Nine candidates have filed to run for three open seats on the Mountain View City Council in the Nov. 4 election – none of them incumbents. The Town Crier asked them to introduce themselves to readers in the following Q&A format. We knew the...

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Schools

LASD committee looks to rank campus improvement projects

LASD committee looks to rank campus improvement projects


Traci Newell/Town Crier
The Los Altos School District’s newly expanded Facilities Advisory Committee met for the first time last week. The 28-member committee’s first task is to prioritize campus improvement projects.

The Los Altos Scho...

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Community

Sports

New-look Lancers find their footing

New-look Lancers find their footing


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
St. Francis High’s Jenna Adams, left, and Carly Deale attempt to bump the ball Friday night. The juniors combined for 28 kills.

This year’s St. Francis High girls volleyball team faintly resembles last season’s squad ...

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Special Sections

MV Whisman teachers cite low pay

MV Whisman teachers cite low pay


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
An estimated 75 supporters of higher teacher pay turned out for the Sept. 4 Mountain View Whisman School District board meeting.

Teachers, trustees and administrators are recovering from a dramatic Mountain View Whism...

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Business

Skin rejuvenation studio joins Rancho

Skin rejuvenation studio joins Rancho


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Esthetician Marjan Kashi showcases one of the treatment rooms at her new studio, Pure Serenity Skincare at Rancho Shopping Center. Kashi provides services including microdermabrasion and various light and heat energy the...

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Books

A woman's perspective on the Greatest Generation

A woman's perspective on the Greatest Generation


During World War II, Virgilia Short Witzel, a young mother and U.S. Navy officer’s wife, grappled on the home front in Menlo Park with wartime rationing, shortages and loneliness. During the ensuing Cold War, she experienced adventure and misadventur...

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People

JERALD (JERRY) NELSON CHRISTIANSEN

JERALD (JERRY) NELSON CHRISTIANSEN

Resident of San Jose and Los Altos, California

July 21, 1931 to August 4, 2014

Born in Arimo, Idaho, to Jerald Emmett and Rebecca Henderson Nelson Christiansen. Raised in Davis and Riverside, California, with summers in Downey, Idaho, and in Loga...

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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

Pear puts on a pair of plays

Pear puts on a pair of plays


J. Smith/Special to the Town Crier
Dan Kapler (as Teddy) and Betsy Kruse Craig (Trish) star in Pear Avenue Theatre’s “House.”

The Pear Avenue Theatre production of two interlocking comedies by Alan Ayckbourn – “House&...

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Spiritual Life

Back to Church Sunday offers opportunity to recommit

The children in Los Altos are back to school, and I can still hear parents cheering. Summer is officially over, even if the calendar doesn’t quite think so.

Parents have attended Back to School nights to meet their children’s teachers. B...

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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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A lot for a little


Photo By: Courtesy of Kia
Photo Courtesy Of Kia The base-model Kia Rio SX includes cruise control, Bluetooth wireless technology, SiriusXM radio, a USB port and a back-up camera.

Considering safety, efficiency and fuel economy, the biggest development in the past 10 years is the introduction of affordable subcompact sedans or hatchbacks that offer all the safety features pioneered in the bigger cars.

Air bags, antilock brakes, electronic stability control and crumple zones are now as much a part of sedans selling for $20,000 as those at higher prices.

Last month we reviewed three examples, and last week we tested an additional example – the 2012 Kia Rio SX. The $17,500 base-price model includes cruise control, Bluetooth wireless technology, SiriusXM radio, USB and auxiliary ports, and a back-up camera. Wow. If you add the premium package consisting of navigation, Sirius traffic reports, sunroof, heated leather seats and carpeted floor mats – all amenities that once were found only in cars costing twice as much – the price is still only $20,545. Wow again.

Like most vehicles in this price range, the car is a five-door hatchback with rear seats that can be folded to provide weekend shopping cargo space or room for a bicycle or camping equipment. We liked the styling – the designers found ways to make these little cars look trendy rather than funky or bland.

Kia does a nice job of mating a four-cylinder 138-horsepower engine with a smooth-shifting six-speed automatic transmission. With this drivetrain, the swoop out of the driveway into four-lane traffic could be accomplished with confidence, even if the quiet little engine doesn’t offer any aural thrills to the exercise. The handling is also competent – almost sporty – in the SX version of the Kia, and every bit the equal to the Ford Fiesta, Honda Fit and Hyundai Accent, considered the benchmarks in this category.

Then there is that fuel economy – 30 mpg in city traffic and 40 mpg on the highway – which makes the car quite practical for the student or young professional who commutes to and from campus or work.

With the price of used cars increasing faster than those of new cars, this category of new cars for approximately $20,000 and with five-year warranties is looking attractive indeed.

Longtime Los Altos residents Gary and Genie Anderson are co-owners of Enthusiast Publications LLC, which edits several car club magazines and contributes articles and columns to automotive magazines and online services.

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