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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Letters to the Editor

Supporting merchants brings ‘reward’

With the downtown association promoting shopping and dining in Los Altos versus visiting neighboring towns, I was “rewarded” with a $54.50 punishment ($81.75 if you pay after 30 days) by the guy who zooms around town marking cars with white chalk.

Does this make sense?

Common sense is very uncommon when it comes to this “reward” for supporting the town’s merchants.

The city should spend my tax money more wisely than paying a salary to a guy whose work is absolutely useless and counterproductive.

Lina Broydo

Los Altos Hills

Drivers beware: No U-turns downtown

Lately, it seems as though every time I come downtown I see someone, usually in a large SUV, making an illegal U-turn in the middle of Main Street to get to a parking spot on the other side of the street. This is a real hazard for the other drivers and pedestrians alike, not to mention totally illegal.

Last week I was pulling out of a parking spot by Starbucks and a woman in a huge SUV stopped on the other side of the double line and put on her left blinker, signaling that she was going to make a U-turn into my parking space. She backed up all the traffic on Main through the Second Street intersection. I rolled down my window and pointed to the double line and said she couldn’t do that, that it was illegal. She drove off in a huff, clearly furious with me.

I hate to suggest it, but since we can’t have a constant police presence handing out tickets, maybe the city should put up signs saying “No U-turns Allowed.” Signs like this won’t add to the ambience of our beautiful town, but they would alleviate some of the congestion.

Judith Bragg

Los Altos

‘Stand Your Ground’ not part of trial

Regarding Grace Acosta’s column on the George Zimmerman trial (“Neither guilty nor innocent,” July 24): She has every right to her opinion, even though she acknowledges that she didn’t follow the trial carefully and listened to summaries by legal analysts and journalists.

She believes that the verdict was probably correct and goes on to elaborate quite eloquently about and criticize the American Legislative Exchange Council and the Florida Stand Your Ground law that she said was the legal justification for Zimmerman’s actions.

My only objective is to set the record straight. I can’t fault Ms. Acosta’s personal conclusion, because she based her premise on statements from likewise uninformed legal analysts and journalists. The problem is that those analysts and journalists had it entirely wrong either deliberately or through ineptness about the Stand Your Ground law in the trial. It was never invoked by the defense or the prosecution, and therefore was never an issue or even mentioned during the trial.

Her false premise unfortunately detracts from the credibility of the rest of her comments. She only served to perpetuate erroneous reporting from CNN, MSNBC, Fox News, mainstream media analysts and journalists who weighed in with their “expert” opinions and misinformation.

Bill Boos

Menlo Park

‘Goodbye Yellow Brick Road’

In the latest assault against the beleaguered residents of Fallen Leaf Lane, the proponents of the Stevens Creek Trail and their consultant (with the support of our representative) have foisted a new scheme to transform this quiet residential street into a “quasi-suitable” trail connector.

Perhaps clouded under the veil of a “feasibility study” with the prospect of free government money with ties and no worldly boundaries, these wizards feel they can denigrate and dismiss the valid concerns of residents over safety/security/land misuse and community impact. Like the “Wizard of Oz,” the munchkins mustn’t see behind the curtain.

One newly misplaced idea for repurposing this street makes automobile travel lanes and parking lanes narrower for residents, while painting a 6-foot yellow pedestrian strip in the street. Yes, a painted “sidewalk” in the street.

Not surprisingly, the affected neighborhood overwhelmingly opposes this “yellow brick road” and the obsession to change our neighborhood/community.

In south Los Altos, perhaps to the dismay of our city officials, we oppose the promulgated urbanization and such unwanted infrastructure as sidewalks, streetlights, etc.

Borrowing from Elton John’s song “Goodbye Yellow Brick Road,” we do know where our future lies – beyond the yellow brick road.

Jo Kozak

Los Altos

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