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News

"Brown is the new green," says local water district


Lina Broydo/Special to the Town Crier
Are downtown Los Altos flower pots getting too much water? The Santa Clara Valley Water District plans to hire “water cops” to discourage overwatering.

The Santa Clara Valley Water District is spending nearl...

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Schools

Foothill camps prepare local students for STEM careers

Foothill camps prepare local students for STEM careers


Photos Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Middle school students make robotic hands using 3-D printers during a STEM Summer Camp at Foothill College.

From designing roller coasters to developing biodegradable plastics, high school students received an i...

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Community

Local entrepreneur opens home to Afghan and Rwandan women

Local entrepreneur opens home to Afghan and Rwandan women


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Businesswomen Joan Mazimhaka of Rwanda, third from left, and Fakhria Ibrahimi of Afghanistan, in orange, traveled to the U.S. with a 26-woman delegation through the Peace Through Business program.

Employees scoop ice ...

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Comment

Moving on: The Rockey Road

Just over a month ago, we decided to put our house on the market. My husband and I had been tossing around the idea of moving back to the area where we grew up, which is only approximately 40 minutes from here. Of course, Los Altos is a great place t...

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Business

Halo heads to Los Altos: Blow-dry bar founder opens new First Street location Monday

Halo heads to Los Altos: Blow-dry bar founder opens new First Street location Monday


ElLie Van Houtte/ Town Crier
Armed with blow dryers, Halo founder Rosemary Camposano, left, and store manager Nikki Thomas prepare for the blow-dry bar’s grand opening on First Street Monday.

A blow-dry bar is set to open downtown Monday, and i...

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Books

"Frozen in Time" chronicles harrowing WWII rescue attempts


Many readers can’t resist a true-life adventure story, especially those that shine a spotlight on people who exhibit supreme courage in the face of adversity and end up surviving – or not – against the odds.

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People

DR. ALFRED HUGHES

Long time Los Altos resident, Dr. Alfred Hughes, died May 1st after a long illness. Dr. Hughes was born in 1927 in Maspeth, NY. He served in the US Army from 1945-6, attended Brooklyn Polytechnic University, then graduated from Reed College in Portla...

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Travel

Travel Tidbit: Ritz-Carlton, Lake Tahoe offers spa getaway

Travel Tidbit: Ritz-Carlton, Lake Tahoe offers spa getaway


Courtesy of Ritz-Carlton
The Ritz-Carlton in Lake Tahoe offers fall getaway packages that include spa treatments and yoga classes.

Fall in North Lake Tahoe boasts crisp mornings and opportunities to spend quality time in the mountains. Specially ...

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Stepping Out

'Wizard' winds down at Bus Barn

'Wizard' winds down at Bus Barn


Town Crier file photo
Local actors rehearse a scene from “The Wizard of Oz.”

Los Altos Youth Theatre and Los Altos Stage Company’s collaborative production of “The Wizard of Oz” is slated to close Sunday at Bus Barn Theater, 97 Hillview Ave.

T...

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Spiritual Life

Stanford University appoints new dean for religious life

Stanford University appoints new dean for religious life


Shaw

Stanford University named the Very Rev. Dr. Jane Shaw, dean of Grace Cathedral in San Francisco, its new dean for religious life.

Provost John Etchemendy announced Shaw’s appointment July 21, adding that she also will join the faculty in...

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Magazine

Festival features fun for everyone

Festival features fun for everyone


TOWN CRIER FILE PHOTO
The Los Altos Arts & Wine Festival boasts more than 375 craft and arts booths.

This weekend’s 35th annual Los Altos Arts & Wine Festival promises to be jam-packed with fun activities for just about everyone. The eve...

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New neighborhood program promotes emergency preparedness in Los Altos


Photo By: Town Crier File Photo
Photo Town Crier File Photo Los Altos Hills Community Emergency Response Teams train to respond to emergencies until professional agencies can arrive. Los Altos PREPARE hopes to bring Los Altos up to speed.

If the power fizzles, mobile networks die or families face separation in the aftermath of a natural disaster or emergency, one local advocate wants Los Altos residents to be prepared to bounce back by creating resilient neighborhood networks that function with or without the assistance of emergency responders.

“It’s not if it happens, but when,” said Los Altos resident Sherie Dodsworth, certified public accountant and entrepreneur, of her efforts to develop stronger neighborhood networks to communicate with the city and first responders when an emergency strikes.

Working hand-in-hand with the city and organizations like the Los Altos Chamber of Commerce, neighborhood watch groups, amateur radio operators and local Boy Scout troops, Dods-worth launched a new initiative to build the networks last fall.

Motivated in part by concerns for her elderly neighbors, who would face major challenges during an emergency, Dodsworth crafted the framework for Los Altos PREPARE – a Los Altos Community Foundation-supported program that engages residents in emergency preparedness planning, outreach and education.

“Our goal is not just preparedness, but also safety by incorporating neighborhood watch and social media,” she said. “The more we know each other over a cup of coffee, the better our community will be.”

To rally volunteers for the initiative and spark community interest, Los Altos PREPARE has scheduled a free Intro to the Personal Emergency Preparedness program 3-4 p.m. April 18 in the Los Altos City Council Chambers, 1 N. San Antonio Road. In addition to a one-hour presentation by Santa Clara County Emergency Services coordinators George Hurst and Mike Sanders, participants can learn about opportunities to organize their families and neighborhoods in the wake of an emergency.

Bringing the city up to speed

Without a dedicated budget for engaging the community in emergency preparedness, the city of Los Altos lags behind some neighboring cities, according to Dodsworth.

Although Los Altos, through annual trainings and drills, trains its police, fire and public works personnel to operate an Emergency Operations Center (EOC), there is currently no coordinated plan for how individual neighborhoods should communicate with the EOC during an emergency.

The Los Altos Recreation Department began offering a free Personal Emergency Preparedness (PEP) class three years ago, but Dodsworth notes that only a small number of residents have participated. Six people registered for February’s PEP class that had the capacity for 25, and Dodworth said the class she attended drew just 10 participants.

In comparison, more than 1,000 Los Altos Hills residents have trained in Personal Emergency Preparedness or are certified as members of the Community Emergency Response Team (CERT).

Dodsworth wants Los Altos PREPARE to lead the charge in creating a grassroots neighborhood network that can make Los Altos “better and stronger.”

In addition to ensuring that every neighborhood in Los Altos is emergency-ready, Los Altos PREPARE will cooperate with the city to improve preparedness information available to residents through the city’s website and continue to encourage enrollment in PEP and CERT classes.

For residents unable to attend the Los Altos PREPARE launch, the Recreation Department is registering participants for April 20 and May 11 PEP classes at losaltosrecreation.org/current-brochure.html.

To volunteer or for more information on Los Altos PREPARE, call 888-2610, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or visit losaltoscf.org/losaltosprepare.

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