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News

Council hosts study session on downtown parking garage

Council hosts study session on downtown parking garage


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
The Los Altos City Council continues to explore options to address parking constraints in the downtown triangle.

The Los Altos City Council last week held the first of two study sessions to discuss the potential construct...

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Schools

LAHS Science and Technology Week features medical examiner

LAHS Science and Technology Week features medical examiner


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
A Los Altos High School student learns how to use robotic surgical equipment at the school’s Science and Technology Week event last year. Students can also attend hands-on presentations at this year’s event, w...

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Community

Ahoy, matey: Pirate Manor ramps up Halloween display

Ahoy, matey: Pirate Manor ramps up Halloween display


Town Crier File Photo
Pirate Manor is once again scheduled to arrive in the front yard of Dane and Jill Glasgow’s home on Manor Way in Los Altos, just in time for Halloween.

Although not the Walking Dead, pirate skeletons have been brought to li...

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Sports

Lancers rule the pool against Spartans

Lancers rule the pool against Spartans


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
St. Francis High’s Eric Reitmeir launches the ball over Mountain View High driver David Niehaus (2) and goalie Kenny Tang. The host Lancers won Friday’s non-league game 9-3.

There wasn’t a lot on the line Friday when ...

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Comment

Reeder, Fung for El Camino HCD: Editorial

The good news for the El Camino Healthcare District (formerly the El Camino Hospital District, for those still getting used to the new name) is that there is a contested election Nov. 4 for the district’s board of directors. Three candidates are runn...

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Special Sections

Plant-based diet offers benefits

Plant-based diet offers benefits


Photo by Ramya Krishna
Los Altos resident Nandini Krishna prepares a meat-free dish According to author Caldwell B. Esselstyn Jr., M.D., a plant-based diet can help prevent cancer.

Shirley Okita of Los Altos has found that adhering to a mostly plant...

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Business

New shop offers haute couture for girls

New shop offers haute couture for girls


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
The Girls @ Los Altos at 239 State St. offers clothing lines such as Nellystella as well as toys and other items for girls.

Cecilia Chen opened The Girls @ Los Altos as a tribute to the party dress. Whether it’s for...

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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

BARBARA DARLING MERIDETH

1946-2014

Born in Palo Alto, raised in Los Altos, retired in southern Oregon. Survived by Peter James Merideth, sons Matthew, Jacob and John Merideth, the loves of her life.

She was a housewife who took great pride in her home, her surroundings and...

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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

'Sleepy Hollow' awakens at Bus Barn

'Sleepy Hollow' awakens at Bus Barn



Los Altos Youth Theatre’s production of “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow,” a musical based on Washington Irving’s classic story, is set to run through Nov. 2 at Bus Barn Theater. The cast comprises 27 young actors, directed by Cindy Powell. Courtesy o...

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Spiritual Life

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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Housing recovery expected to continue in 2014

The state’s housing market will continue to improve in 2014, with sales shifting toward primary home buyers and both sales and home prices posting further gains, according to a recent California Association of Realtors (CAR) “2014 California Housing Market Forecast.”

The forecast expects sales to rise 3.2 percent next year to reach 444,000 units, up from the projected 2013 sales figure of 430,300 homes sold. Sales in 2013 will be down 2.1 percent from the 439,400 existing, single-family homes sold in 2012.

“As the economy enters the fourth year of a modest recovery, we expect to see a strong demand for homeownership, as buyers who may have been competing with investors and facing an extreme shortage of available housing return from the sidelines,” said CAR President Don Faught. 

CAR Vice President and Chief Economist Leslie Appleton-Young, who delivered the forecast last week at the California Realtor Expo 2013 in Long Beach, projected a growth in the U.S. Gross Domestic Product of 2.8 percent in 2014, after a projected gain of 1.8 percent this year. 

She described growth this year as being moderate, but consistently positive. She indicated the country needs at least a 3 percent growth rate to be on the road to full recovery.

With nonfarm job growth of 1.9 percent in California, the state’s unemployment rate should decrease to 8.3 percent in 2014, down from 9 percent in 2013 and 10.5 percent in 2012.

The average for 30-year fixed mortgage interest rates will rise to 5.3 percent, but will still remain at historically low levels.

The California median home price is forecast to increase 6 percent to $432,800 in 2014, following a projected 28-percent increase in 2013 to $408,600.

Appleton-Young noted that 2014 will see “a continuation of slow recovery and continued strength in the housing sector.”

She added that the housing sector has been the “engine of growth” for the economy.

Wild cards for 2014 include federal, fiscal, monetary and housing policies – such as the mortgage interest deduction and mortgage finance reform – as well as housing supply and the actions of the Federal Reserve, which will ensure a higher rate environment.

The Silicon Valley Association of Realtors provided information for this article. For more information, email Rose Meily at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

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