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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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Fallen Leaf neighbors want to be left alone: Other Voices

The Stevens Creek Trail has become a touchy subject among many South Los Altos property owners.

A 2008 feasibility study determined that the best route for continuing the trail from Mountain View was via Fremont Avenue to Grant Road and Foothill Expressway. Somehow this has morphed into a possible route down Fallen Leaf Lane. It sounds innocent until you discover that one of the city’s options is to use the easement (approximately 9 feet) for sidewalks and bike lanes from each side of the street.

The city easement contains tall oak, redwood and pine trees that were planted decades ago. Rose bushes, flowers, irrigation and more have been lovingly maintained and improved to enhance the rural look of the neighborhood. Can you imagine your easement turned into a sidewalk?

Sidewalks? Whoa there, city officials! The founders of Los Altos wanted to keep the rural feel of the town. Mind you, when my family moved into our current home on Fallen Leaf Lane in January 1960, there was an orchard across the street, Fremont had no median, there was a railroad track where Foothill Expressway is and we rode cardboard sleds on the summer oat grass down the hill from the top of Arboretum Driven to the bottom, where Interstate 280 is now.

Fast forward to the meeting at Grant Park June 18. I stopped to ask an elderly couple if they needed help with their walkers. “No, thank you, we can manage. We had to come – how could the city do this?” was their reply. These are stewards of yesteryear and their successors, the young families with the same mindset that were drawn to this neighborhood because it is not a cookie-cutter master plan of tract homes, sidewalks and bright streetlights.

At the meeting, Los Altos City Councilwoman Jeannie Bruins said the proposed 60-foot widening for sidewalks and bike lanes on Fallen Leaf Lane was no longer under consideration. However, green-painted bike lanes, narrowed intersections with sidewalks and plantings and other designs are still under consideration – just to accommodate thousands of cyclists and pedestrians who would potentially use the trail.

I spoke with a Sunnyvale resident after the meeting and asked what Sunnyvale residents thought of the trail. After several promptings, he admitted that even though they have sidewalks, they don’t want bike lanes or the loss of street parking.

From the proposal for a roundabout at Fallen Leaf Lane and Fremont Avenue to the Stevens Creek Trail, the city’s lack of timely communication with residents begs the questions: What has happened to the Los Altos we fell in love with? Doesn’t our beleaguered neighborhood deserve a break?

Bonnie Osborne is a Fallen Leaf Lane resident.

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