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News

Spooktacular moved indoors


Due to rain, today's downtown Los Altos Halloween activities have been moved to the indoor courtyard of Play! at 170 State St. Enter from the back on the parking lot side to participate in crafts, games and fun. Activities continue until 4 p.m.

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Schools

Gardner Bullis School debuts new Grizzly Student Center

Gardner Bullis School debuts new Grizzly Student Center


Photo by Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Students line up to check books out of the library in the new Grizzly Student Center at Gardner Bullis School.

Gardner Bullis School opened its new Grizzly Student Center earlier this month, introducing a lea...

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Community

Home improvement workshop scheduled Wednesday (Oct. 29)

The County of Santa Clara is hosting a free informational workshop on 6:30 p.m. Wednesday at Los Altos Hills Town Hall, 26379 Fremont Road.

The workshop will offer ways single-family homeowners can increase their homes’ energy efficiency. Eligible i...

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Comment

Off the fence: TC recommends 'yes' on N

The Town Crier initially offered no position on the controversial $150 million Measure N bond on Tuesday’s ballot. But some of the reasons we gave in our Oct. 15 editorial were, on reflection, overly critical and based on inaccurate information.

We ...

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Special Sections

Long-term solutions emerge as water conservation goes mainstream

Long-term solutions emerge as water conservation goes mainstream


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Forrest Linebarger, right, installed greywater and rainwater harvesting systems at his Los Altos Hills home.

With more brown than green visible in her Los Altos backyard, Kacey Fitzpatrick admits that she’s a little e...

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Business

Local realtors scare up money for charity

Local realtors scare up money for charity


Photo courtesy of SILVAR
Realtors Gary Campi and Jordan Legge, from left, joined Nancy Domich, SILVAR President Dave Tonna and Joe Brown to raise funds for the Silicon Valley Realtors Charitable Foundation.

Los Altos and Mountain View realtors raise...

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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

DAVID S. NIVISON

DAVID S. NIVISON

David S. Nivison, 91 years old, and a resident of Los Altos, California since 1952, died Oct. 16, 2014 at home.  His neighbors had recently honored him as the “Mayor of Russell Ave., in recognition of 62 years of distinguished living” on that ...

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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

ECYS opens season Sunday

ECYS opens season Sunday


Ramya Krishna/Special to the Town Crier
The El Camino Youth Symphony rehearses for Sunday’s concert, above.

The El Camino Youth Symphony – under new conductor Jindong Cai – is scheduled to perform its season-opening concert 4 p.m....

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Spiritual Life

Christian Science Reading Room hosts webinar on prayer and healing

Christian Science practitioner and teacher Evan Mehlenbacher is scheduled to present a live Internet webinar lecture, “Prayer That Heals,” 7:30 p.m. Nov. 14 in the Christian Science Reading Room, 60 Main St., Los Altos.

Those interested ...

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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

Show appreciation for Roy and Penny Lave

In the past few years, I joined a long list of people who have had the pleasure of working with Roy and Penny Lave – first on the Investment Committee of the Los Altos Community Foundation and then in the LEAD program, organized by the foundation.

The Town Crier’s Aug. 21 interview with the Laves (“Roy and Penny Lave reminisce about 50 years in Los Altos”) told me more about both Penny and Roy’s history. Having known them only recently, I especially enjoyed the picture of Roy on the city council in the 1970s – love the facial hair, Roy!

I encourage readers to show their appreciation for the Laves by visiting the foundation’s website at losaltoscf.org, by donating in their honor and/or by signing up to attend the foundation’s gala Sept. 9.

Amy Pearl Parodi

Los Altos

Commute times longer on San Antonio Road

In the Aug. 21 Town Crier, an article states: “High-density apartments are under consideration for the 420 San Antonio Road and 2580 California St. properties” (“San Antonio area headed for trouble?”).

How do we stop this?

I live off Los Altos Avenue and it is gridlock around school hours from parents who don’t want their kids to cross El Camino Real as it is. I can imagine how horrible the traffic will become when couples move into these new apartments, have kids and send them to Santa Rita and Egan Junior High schools.

Mountain View should not be allowed to add a single new housing unit until the city has a school on the other side of El Camino for the kids, so traffic can return somewhat to what it was before all the new building began.

San Antonio Road is gridlocked during commute times. When I moved here 19 years ago, it took six minutes to drive to Highway 101 in the morning from my house. If I left before 7 a.m., I could drive to work (Hewlett-Packard in San Jose on Trimble Road at First Street) in 12 minutes. These days, it is a 12-minute trip from my house to 101 during noncommute times (between 2 and 3 p.m.).

I feel that politicians are selling off our quality of life to developers in exchange for campaign funds. The subsequent zoning variances allow the developers to get rich packing people in like sardines.

Kirk Lindstrom

Los Altos

Reader lauds wisdom of TC columnist

While I’ve never had the pleasure of meeting her in person, I feel that I know a lot about Jackie Madden Haugh through her fabulous columns in the Town Crier.

To be completely honest, when I open the paper each week, her column – “Haugh About That?” – is the first thing I look to read. Her writing style is natural, somewhat whimsical and always enjoyable. She tastefully blends the human element with a touching and meaningful close.

No, God makes no mistakes (to quote her father in her last column), and He certainly made no mistake leading her to inspire our community with her wise words.

Jean Hephinger

Los Altos

Speed-limit rule a reasonable guideline

I noticed in an Aug. 21 Town Crier article (“Slow down: LA City Council rejects proposed speed-limit increases”) that Los Altos City Councilwoman Val Carpenter characterized the state’s 85 percent rule as “the real villain,” a policy that “lets the fastest drivers set the speed limits.”

I think a closer look at the 85 percent rule might be in order to avoid misconceptions.

The 85 percent rule has been used by California and communities all over the world for nearly 50 years as a useful tool to determine safe speeds. Far from letting the fastest drivers set the speed limit, the 85 percent rule effectively lets the large majority set the limit, which strikes me as a very reasonable guideline. Research has shown that accidents tend to go up when speed limits are set below the 85 percent rule.

Gary Brauch

Los Altos Hills

Paint disposal proves complicated

Have you ever tried to dispose of two half-gallons of used, oil-based paint legally? Here are the results of my attempt.

First, I asked an employee of our garbage company, who told me to set it next to our garbage tote on the day the regular trash is collected. On trash pickup day, the driver did not take the cans. He told me that they pick up water-based paint, not oil-based paint.

I would need to drive from Los Altos to the Household Hazardous Waste Drop-Off Station in Sunnyvale. There are two stations near that location. I have used one of them before, so I decided to leave the two paint cans there.

The lady in charge was smiling as I lifted out the two cans of paint. She said, “Stop right there, we don’t accept oil-based paint. You need to go about two blocks farther down the road, where there is a big sign: “Household Hazardous Waste Drop-Off Station.”

So I got back in my car to travel the two blocks on Carl Road. When I arrived, I was informed that they only accept hazardous materials on the third Saturday of each month. I couldn’t believe it.

What a day! Sometimes it is difficult trying to be a good citizen.

Donald M. Rauch

Los Altos

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