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News

Meet the Santa Clara Valley Water District Board of Directors candidates

Meet the Santa Clara Valley Water District Board of Directors candidates

Two candidates have filed to run for the District 7 seat on the Santa Clara Valley Water District Board of Directors in the Nov. 4 election. The water district, established in 1929, oversees and protects water resources in Santa Clara County....

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Schools

New LAHS assistant principal focuses on school activities

New LAHS assistant principal focuses on school activities


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Suzanne Woolfolk, assistant principal at Los Altos High, teaches a leadership course for Associated Student Body leaders.

Suzanne Woolfolk – new assistant principal at Los Altos High School – said she is happy...

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Community

Petting zoo, car show highlight Chamber's annual Fall Festival

Petting zoo, car show highlight Chamber's annual Fall Festival


Courtesy of Los Altos Chamber of Commerce
The petting zoo is a highlight of the Los Altos Fall Festival. This year’s event is slated Oct. 4 and 5.

The Los Altos Chamber of Commerce has scheduled its 23rd annual Fall Festival 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Oc...

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Sports

Burlingame bowls over Los Altos

Burlingame bowls over Los Altos


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Los Altos High halfback Sean Lanoza looks for running room against Burlingame in Saturday’s home opener.

The opening drive of Saturday’s game against Burlingame couldn’t have gone much better for the Los Altos High fo...

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Comment

Does Los Altos have a parking problem, or is it a symptom? : Other Voices

Yes, and yes. It appears that the downtown Los Altos parking problem is a symptom of the city’s “Sarah Winchester” approach to planning that instead of resulting in staircases to nowhere resulted in a hotel without parking required by code.(1)

From ...

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Special Sections

Los Altos landmark Four families later, Shoup House goes on the market

Los Altos landmark Four families later, Shoup House goes on the market


Courtesy of Matthew Anello
The Shoup House dining room, above, features original elements. The 100-year-old house on University Avenue earned a spot on the National Register of Historic Places, a nod to its legacy as the home of city founder Paul S...

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Business

Longtime banker readies for retirement

Longtime banker readies for retirement


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Joanne Kavalaris is retiring at the end of October after spending the past 25 years of her banking career in downtown Los Altos.

A longtime Los Altos banker is calling it a career in a few weeks.

Joanne Kavalaris, Bank o...

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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

VINCENT (TIM) MURPHY JR.

VINCENT (TIM) MURPHY JR.

July 27, 1953 – August 12, 2014

Native Los Altan died Medford, OR. Graduated Bellarmine Prep. Married Josephine Domino, 1950. Licensed Auto Mechanic, Private Pilot, skilled Computer Scientist. Tim “could fix anything”. Afflicted with cancer 2001. ...

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Travel

Taking a Turkey trek: Winging it during the World Cup

Taking a Turkey trek: Winging it during the World Cup


Rich Robertson/Special to the Town Crier
The sun sets over the Aegean Sea in Bodrum, Turkey, left.

Tours that whisk you from Istanbul to Bodrum in 11 days are as plentiful as souvenir hawkers in Turkey, but traveling from the Blue Mosque to Topkapi ...

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Stepping Out

Pear builds wonderful 'House'

Pear builds wonderful 'House'


J. Smith/Special to the Town Crier
Betsy Kruse Craig portrays Trish in the Pear Avenue Theatre production of “House,” which closes Oct. 5.

Mountain View’s Pear Avenue Theatre is staging an unusual theater-going experience – producing two plays...

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Spiritual Life

Magazine

Local events add color to autumn calendar

Local events add color to autumn calendar


Van Houtte/town crier Visitors make their way through the Children’s Alley.

As Los Altos’ signature Chinese Pistache trees exchange their summer green for vibrant hues of yellow, orange and red in the fall, an abundance of local events also ad...

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Letters to the Editor

Why is Egan ‘campsite’ still under consideration?

I am a parent of two and reside within the Los Altos School District. Both of my children attend Bullis Charter School. I attended the district board-hosted session that included breakout groups to explore solutions to the charter school facilities issue, specifically the group exploring the option of swapping campuses with Santa Rita School. Given what has transpired since, I want to raise an important point.

Our group of approximately 25 parents represented a mix of schools, Santa Rita being most heavily represented. We had a constructive dialogue. While we didn’t agree on all points, the room unanimously agreed that a key message to bring back to the board was: The Bullis Charter School campus, or the “campsite,” as it was referred to multiple times, was not suitable for any student, not Santa Rita students, not charter school students, not any other students in the district.

Since these breakout sessions, the Santa Rita swap option has been removed from the list. However, other options involving the charter school’s remaining at the campsite are still very much under consideration.

Interestingly, until 2007-2008 I had planned and assumed that both my children would attend Almond School. When the district realignment moved my children from being able to walk to Almond to needing to drive to Springer School, I was triggered to explore alternatives. I stumbled upon Bullis Charter School while I was waitlisted for Springer. I made the decision to send my son to the charter school without any understanding of political issues. I was and am just a parent who wants my kids to have a good education in a healthy environment.

I just don’t understand how we have come to this. I am not someone who has ever asked for more than my fair share. I am only asking for my children to be treated as fairly as any other child in the district. My breakout session, dominated by non-charter school parents, spoke loudly and clearly about the inadequacy of the charter school “campsite” and could not get comfortable with the idea of their children using this campus. We passed this unanimous message on to the board. Why then is the “campsite” still a consideration for charter school students?

Andrea Morokutti

Los Altos

A student addresses schools’ conflict

I am currently an eighth-grader at Egan Junior High School. My family has recently moved to Los Altos, and I am disturbed by the tension between Bullis Charter School and the Los Altos School District. The charter school has taken some of our land, including the tennis courts and one-half of the track. They are currently deciding on whether to move to Covington School or Santa Rita School, which is where my sister goes.

I don’t want the charter school to move to Santa Rita, but there are also many students at Covington who will not have a place to go if the charter school moves there.

I believe the reason the charter school always wants to expand is because it constantly expands its student population. Therefore, I believe that the charter school needs to stop expanding its student population or at least slow it down. As a result, the school would not have as big a reason to expand into district schools.

I don’t think that Bullis Charter School should keep trying to get land from other schools, because it makes many students and parents at other schools angry. This would lead to some parents filing lawsuits against Bullis Charter School, which is what is happening right now.

We should spend the money on improving education, not on lawyer’s fees.

I believe that Bullis Charter School should reduce the amount of people it takes in every year.

Kerry Liu Los Altos

Holiday spirit should include courtesy

The holidays can bring stress from last-minute-gift nerves, family expectations and maybe even some sad memories. But this gives people absolutely no right to take out their frustrations on their friendly neighborhood Starbucks barista.

While sitting at the counter for only an hour, not only did I witness customers use verbally abusive tones because of the short wait during the coffee rush hour, but one customer even went so far as to insult and threaten the barista due to her own error!

Is the world’s biggest problem really that you don’t have your latte?

Everyone has a bad day from time to time, but this does not give adults permission to use childish and degrading behavior when interacting with others.

We should all remember this lesson – especially in light of the recent events that showcase the harsh realities of the world.

Why not make the day a little bit brighter simply by being nice?

Alyssa Jacobson

Los Altos

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