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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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Back to the future: Renovating the civic center: Other Voices

It is a good thing that the Los Altos City Council wants to review the Civic Center Master Plan. When the people of our town are questioned, among their top priorities are schools, library and recreation. The master plan cannot address the schools, so let’s stick with what we must and can update. There is absolutely no doubt that our civic center needs to be brought up to date. Some suggestions come to mind.

The old Hillview School site must be replaced. It is antiquated and unsafe. The library needs to expand – it is running out of space for all the services it now provides and for future services. Both facilities serve every segment of our community.

For Phase 1, I would suggest we combine these two services at the Hillview site. Many of the patrons of one also use the other. And we can make it safer and easier for them with the inclusion of underground parking. The traffic flow would definitely improve.

Once the library has moved, city hall would have access to the library building and could renovate/expand it to suit its needs. It would certainly make it easier for those using the facility to enter from San Antonio Road, park, conduct their business and exit without having to fight library traffic. This would be Phase 2.

With city hall vacant, the Los Altos Police Department could use that site – again with renovations necessary for their needs. They can keep their eyes on the community, and, for those conducting business with the police, there they are. This would be Phase 3.

Now for traffic flow: People enter from San Antonio (from the new city hall side – one way only), conduct their business at city hall and exit going around the loop onto San Antonio again or continue past the Los Altos History Museum and exit onto Hillview Avenue (as is done now). Those using the Hillview site do not have to fight two-way traffic and cars parking and pulling out in a narrow space and can exit as above.

For Phase 4, perhaps the Bus Barn Theater could expand into the bumpout by the soccer field. As the performances are scheduled mostly at night when city hall is closed, parking would be available without taking away from the Hillview site. Bus Barn could use the Los Altos Youth Center or the old police station site.

Finally, in planning these changes, let us not try to imitate Palo Alto, Mountain View, Santana Row or Europe. We are a charming and much-needed restful community. Let us not change the reasons we moved to Los Altos.

Ida Cohen is a longtime Los Altos resident.

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