Thu10022014

News

LA Council race adds 3 new faces to city politics

LA Council race adds 3 new faces to city politics


The Town Crier chronicled the first election of Los Altos City Council incumbent Jarrett Fishpaw in 2010 and documented the Los Altos candidacy of Jean Mordo, who volunteered as a longtime public servant in Los Altos Hills before moving to the flat...

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Schools

St. Simon launches web-based learning management system

St. Simon launches web-based learning management system


Courtesy of St. Simon Parish School
St. Simon fifth-grader Matthew Cummins uses a laptop in class last week. The school’s cloud-based Schoology system boosts organization and collaboration.

Families at St. Simon Parish School in Los Altos laun...

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Community

Los Altos to celebrate 100 years of library use with 'Centennial Faire'

Los Altos to celebrate 100 years of library use with 'Centennial Faire'


Town Crier File Photo
The Los Altos main library is among the more popular branches in the county library district system, set to celebrate 100 years.

In 1914, Babe Ruth made his debut with the Boston Red Sox, wages hit $5 per day, the first ste...

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Sports

Eagles eye another stellar season

Eagles eye another stellar season


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Los Altos High outside hitter Carmen Annevelink, right, goes for the kill Thursday against Palo Alto, as teammates Sarah Tritschler, left, and Lulu Kishton prepare to play defense. The Eagles won the match in straight ga...

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Comment

Torok, Walter, Dave for MVLA board: Editorial

There’s really nothing major you can criticize about the Mountain View Los Altos Union High School District. It offers a diverse array of effective programs for all types of students. Its instructors, with few exceptions, are outstanding.

Howe...

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Special Sections

'Funabout' Fiat

'Funabout' Fiat


Photos courtesy of Fiat
The 2014 Fiat 500e uses 29 kilowatt-hours per 100 miles, which the engineers claim is the equivalent of 116 mpg of gas use. It has a sticker price of $33,095.

If you believe in climate change, would love to see alternat...

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Business

App developer eyes First Friday as testing ground

App developer eyes First Friday as testing ground


Ted Fagenson

An East Bay app developer is testing his newest creation in downtown Los Altos.

Ted Fagenson, co-founder of Skrownge (pronounced “scrounge”), told the Town Crier that he’s beta testing his mobile gaming app this week ...

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Books

From story to bookstore: Local journey highlights Halloween

From story to bookstore: Local journey highlights Halloween


Courtesy of Dee Ellmann
Jenny Hurwick self-published her picture book last month after decades of storytelling.

During her years working as a teacher and a Los Altos mom, Jenny Hurwick loved to tell stories. One tale she crafted for her son just se...

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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

'Gypsy' on its way out

'Gypsy' on its way out


Chris Berger/Special to the Town Crier
Alison Koch of Los Altos plays Dainty June in “Gypsy.”

This is the final weekend to catch the Sunnyvale Community Players production of “Gypsy” at the Sunnyvale Theatre. The musical is slated to close Sund...

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Spiritual Life

Ugandan pastor visits U.S. to raise support for children's ministry

Ugandan pastor visits U.S. to raise support for children's ministry


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Herman Lukwago educates children in Uganda.

Imagine life if your father had 25 children and you were raised in poverty in rural Uganda.

Now imagine that you and your siblings were orphaned at an early age and you ass...

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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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Contemporary art museum rises on Michigan State campus


Photo By: Eren Gknar/Special to the Town Crier
Photo Eren Gknar/Special To The Town Crier A traditional brick building on the Michigan State University campus, above, presents a stark contrast with the sharp, modern lines of the Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum. Lansing, Michigan’s capital, also offers a host of outdoor activities, including the Lansing River Trail, above left.

Summer is a great time of year to visit the Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum in East Lansing, Mich., which opened last November.

With the Michigan State University campus devoid of its usual 50,000 students, visitors are free to explore the pleated stainless steel and glass trapezoidal structure at leisure.

It is also the ideal season to experience the greenery of mid-Michigan’s peaceful river trails, parks and nature centers.

An English professor would have an easy time assigning a “compare and contrast” paper to students visiting The Broad for the first time.

The Broad sits adjacent to a standard brick classroom structure typical of the first university built by land grants in 1855. By contrast, the museum, with its silver walls that appear to lack windows and doors from a distance, looks like a futuristic space ship.

The museum’s zigzagging, slanted sides – designed by London-based architect Zaha Hadid – make for perfect interior wall spaces on which to display abstract art. Hadid, a Pritzker Architecture Prize winner, created a contemporary art museum symbolizing dynamism to hold cutting-edge pieces.

Philanthropist endows alma mater

Named after the building’s primary benefactor, philanthropist and Michigan State alumnus Eli Broad and his wife, Edythe, The Broad inherited the former Kresge Art Museum’s collections.

The Kresge’s permanent works range from Greek and Roman pieces to Renaissance and modern works. Sculptors Alexander Calder, Ann Hamilton and Chuck Close are represented.

Broad, 80, built two Fortune 500 companies, including Kaufman and Broad, which later became KB Homes, building houses without basements, a Michigan anomaly. He later expanded into life insurance with SunAmerica Inc., which was purchased by AIG Inc. As a philanthropist, he was founding chairman of the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles. The Broads also operate a “lending library” of their private collection through the Broad Art Foundation.

Since its grand opening last year, The Broad has attracted a steady crowd. More than 73,000 people have visited, some drawn by the various concerts, films and lectures presented to support the artists’ works. Community outreach is key.

Founding director Michael Rush, former director of Brandeis University’s Rose Art Museum and the Palm Beach Institute of Art, publishes and lectures on art topics and hosts an Internet art radio program.

Monthly weekend family education days include hands-on activities related to the exhibitions. A recent program offered an iPad scavenger hunt.

“Blind Field,” an exhibition on obstruction of perception featuring 21 Brazilian artists, opened this month and runs through Sept. 8. Bikers can join a free ride from the Capitol Building to The Broad July 26 to discuss how perceptions of buildings differ depending on alternative modes of transportation.

A museum cafe and store overlook the sculpture gardens, but if you want dinner, head to Lansing’s historical Old Town.

 

A city in flux

With the new Broad in town, Lansing appears to be in flux.

On the way to visit the museum, I had a hard time crossing the main drag to reach the Greater Lansing Convention & Visitors Bureau. Trucks and hard-hatted construction workers blocked the road as the wind showered me with tiny black particles. Brushing myself off, I muttered, “Why do they have to do that now?”

Siri, a Convention & Visitors Bureau volunteer, said, “Because there’s only two seasons in Lansing: winter and road construction.”

In addition to touring The Broad, Lansing offers canoe and kayak rentals on the Red Cedar and Grand rivers. The city’s Class A minor league baseball team, the Lansing Lugnuts, plays all summer. Their mascot is a dinosaur named “Big Lug.”

Old Town, a quaint area on the bank of the Grand River, is home to a wide variety of shops, galleries and restaurants. A local resident recommended Aggie Mae’s Bakery, famous for its chocolate cupcakes.

Old Town likes to party – it hosts 111 festivals a year – but it’s also on the National Register of Historic Places, as is the Turner-Dodge House & Heritage Center, built circa 1858. The Lansing River Trail runs nearby, wending 13 miles throughout the area.

Pop in to some of Old Town’s antique stores, like April’s Antiques or Love, Betti, for midcentury finds that won’t take your entire paycheck. Of course, there is that little problem of getting that curio cabinet home. I found some retro giftwrap for $5 that satisfied my craving for the 1960s.

For more information, visit www.broadmuseum.msu.edu or www.lansing.org.

Two tips: Lansing, Mich.

As the capital of Michigan and home to the mighty Big Ten Michigan State Spartans, Lansing offers a wide array of accommodations and restaurants. Following are two highlights.

• For a bed-and-breakfast experience, The Wild Goose Inn at 512 Albert Ave. offers an artsy place to stay. It boasts six suites in two houses – The Goose and The Gosling. Room names match the decor: Summer Safari, Autumn Arbor, Winter Eden. A community deck with cafe tables and a fire pit joins the two houses.

Amenities include Jacuzzi tubs, gas fireplaces, cable TV and Mission-style furnishings.

Rates start at $119 per night during the week, $159 on weekends, and include full breakfast.

For reservations and more information, visit www.wildgooseinn.com.

• Californians might miss the foodie scene, but try the Soup Spoon Cafe at 1419 E. Michigan Ave. for a perfectly tasty bistro-style menu. Specialties include the $10 blackened tenderloin salad with gorgonzola and the Mediterranean salad with salami.

The cafe alternates Michigan craft beers nightly and offers a wide assortment of wines. Beware of Saturday nights, though – you will need reservations.

For reservations and more information, visit www.soupspooncafe.com.

– By Eren Göknar

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