Fri10242014

News

Council hosts study session on downtown parking garage

Council hosts study session on downtown parking garage


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
The Los Altos City Council continues to explore options to address parking constraints in the downtown triangle.

The Los Altos City Council last week held the first of two study sessions to discuss the potential construct...

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Schools

LAHS Science and Technology Week features medical examiner

LAHS Science and Technology Week features medical examiner


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
A Los Altos High School student learns how to use robotic surgical equipment at the school’s Science and Technology Week event last year. Students can also attend hands-on presentations at this year’s event, w...

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Community

Ahoy, matey: Pirate Manor ramps up Halloween display

Ahoy, matey: Pirate Manor ramps up Halloween display


Town Crier File Photo
Pirate Manor is once again scheduled to arrive in the front yard of Dane and Jill Glasgow’s home on Manor Way in Los Altos, just in time for Halloween.

Although not the Walking Dead, pirate skeletons have been brought to li...

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Sports

Lancers rule the pool against Spartans

Lancers rule the pool against Spartans


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
St. Francis High’s Eric Reitmeir launches the ball over Mountain View High driver David Niehaus (2) and goalie Kenny Tang. The host Lancers won Friday’s non-league game 9-3.

There wasn’t a lot on the line Friday when ...

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Comment

Reeder, Fung for El Camino HCD: Editorial

The good news for the El Camino Healthcare District (formerly the El Camino Hospital District, for those still getting used to the new name) is that there is a contested election Nov. 4 for the district’s board of directors. Three candidates are runn...

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Special Sections

Plant-based diet offers benefits

Plant-based diet offers benefits


Photo by Ramya Krishna
Los Altos resident Nandini Krishna prepares a meat-free dish According to author Caldwell B. Esselstyn Jr., M.D., a plant-based diet can help prevent cancer.

Shirley Okita of Los Altos has found that adhering to a mostly plant...

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Business

New shop offers haute couture for girls

New shop offers haute couture for girls


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
The Girls @ Los Altos at 239 State St. offers clothing lines such as Nellystella as well as toys and other items for girls.

Cecilia Chen opened The Girls @ Los Altos as a tribute to the party dress. Whether it’s for...

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Books

Helping kids catch a few Zs: Local dental hygienist pens meditative bedtime book

Helping kids catch a few Zs: Local dental hygienist pens meditative bedtime book


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Mimi Sommers, who works at a Los Altos dentist’s office, recently wrote a children’s book.

A local dental hygienist recently published a book that aims to ease parents and children during a sometimes anxious e...

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People

BARBARA DARLING MERIDETH

1946-2014

Born in Palo Alto, raised in Los Altos, retired in southern Oregon. Survived by Peter James Merideth, sons Matthew, Jacob and John Merideth, the loves of her life.

She was a housewife who took great pride in her home, her surroundings and...

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Travel

Falling leaves: Four places in California to see autumn colors

Falling leaves: Four places in California to see autumn colors


Courtesy of Castello di Amorosa
Castello di Amorosa in Calistoga, above, boasts a beautiful setting for viewing fall’s colors – and sampling the vineyard’s wines.

Yes, Virginia, there is fall in California.

The colors pop out in...

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Stepping Out

'Sleepy Hollow' awakens at Bus Barn

'Sleepy Hollow' awakens at Bus Barn



Los Altos Youth Theatre’s production of “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow,” a musical based on Washington Irving’s classic story, is set to run through Nov. 2 at Bus Barn Theater. The cast comprises 27 young actors, directed by Cindy Powell. Courtesy o...

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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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Should we buy on the dip?

The market fell for the third day in a row last Friday, the first negative week for investors since mid-April. The drop triggered concern that began when Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke said a change could come in future meetings when the Fed reduces the stimulus. The stimulus programs Bernanke initiated have helped feed a four-year rally in stock prices.

Where is the market headed from here? Should investors buy on the dip? It’s a serious move and raises the question of whether such a move could be profitable when the Chinese economy is contracting. While Fed action remains a question mark and some stocks are still overbought, where but the stock market can you get a reasonable return for your money?

Two Town Crier “50” stocks made headlines last week.

• Microsoft Corp. (MSFT; $34.20) shares have surged 28 percent this year, reaching levels last seen in January 2008. Gains were made despite sluggish personal computer sales and the company’s weakness in mobile computing.

The company, based in Redmond, Wash., with a presence in Mountain View, remains strong. No other competitor will eclipse the performance of Microsoft’s operating system or unseat Microsoft Office’s popularity – and Windows 8 is picking up steam. Microsoft’s recent ad campaign mocking Apple takes a negative slant but gets its point across.

Microsoft unveiled Xbox One, its first new video-game console in eight years. The console features a living-room system that claims to be the only system households will need for games, movies, television and other entertainment. It will be available for purchase later this year at an undisclosed price.

Analysts’ consensus reports on Microsoft stock predict that the opportunity is huge, but so are the challenges. Several analysts reversed recommendations from a buy to a hold. The high target price for Microsoft stock is $42 and the median $33.

• Hewlett-Packard Co. (HPQ; $24.40) shook up analysts and investors last week when its second-quarter results beat Wall Street expectations. Excluding certain items, the company posted earnings of 87 cents per share, down from a year ago but surpassing the estimate by 6 cents.

The Palo Alto-based company recorded sales of $27.6 billion, down by a half billion from a year ago. Profit sank 32 percent from the previous year.

In a conference call to analysts, CEO Meg Whitman said, “I must say that I’m encouraged with where we are. We have made significant progress, and you can feel the turnaround taking place at HP. Revenue growth is possible in 2014.”

Investors remain confused by the company’s sagging sales and profit over the past few years. The businesses HP acquired – including Autonomy for $11 billion – have not helped the bottom line either. The company exceeded forecasts by cutting costs and laying off 29,000 employees.

Before HP announced its quarter results, analysts had downgraded the stock to a sell, but post-results, they are recommending a hold. The mean target price for the stock is $20, with a high of $29.

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