Sat10252014

News

Election flyer mimics newspaper coverage

Election flyer mimics newspaper coverage

A flyer is being distributed across Los Altos that looks like it is from the Los Altos Town Crier but was neither created nor distributed by the community’s weekly newspaper. The flyer, pictured at right, is being distributed by workers from Pyrami...

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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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Follow these tips to avoid new scams targeting seniors

While most people were taught to use good manners when answering the telephone, not everyone who calls you necessarily has good intentions.

According to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, a recent spate of lottery scams and advance-fee frauds originating in Jamaica are targeting seniors and other Americans via telephone.

While the Jamaican and U.S. governments have teamed to tighten laws and combat the problem, it is important to guard against becoming the next victim.

Knowing the difference between legitimate telemarketers and scammers is crucial. Protect yourself by taking the following precautions.

• Never pay money to collect supposed sweepstakes winnings. Legitimate operations won’t require you to pay to collect winnings. It’s against U.S. law to play foreign lotteries. If you get a call saying you’ve won one, it’s probably a scam.

• Never wire money to anyone you don’t know.

• Ignore unsolicited calls from anyone, even charities and companies with whom you already do business. You have no way to confirm whether the caller is legitimate. Even caller ID can be faked. When in doubt, just hang up.

• Place your telephone number on the National Do Not Call Registry. It’s fast and free. Visit DoNotCall.gov or add your number to the registry by calling (888) 382-1222 from the phone you wish to register.

• Check unfamiliar area codes before returning calls. Be aware that there are many three-digit area codes that connect callers to international telephone numbers.

• If you don’t make international calls, ask your telephone provider to block incoming and outgoing international calls.

• Never provide anyone with personal information, such as bank accounts, PIN numbers or Social Security numbers.

• Prevent criminals from accessing your money. Contact your bank, brokerages and the Social Security Administration to add a password to your accounts.

• If callers insist on speaking with you, tell them that you’ll call them directly. Don’t take a number offered by a potential fraudster. You’re safer looking up the number independently.

• Scammers often create false deadlines. If you feel pressured, hang up. You’ve spent a lifetime earning your money. You deserve time to choose how to spend it.

• Help others from falling victim to scammers by warning friends and family. If you’ve received a call, mail or email you think might be from a scammer, contact local authorities or report it to the Federal Trade Commission by calling (877) 382-4357.

“The Jamaican government is resolved to successfully combat this scourge,” said Peter Bunting, Jamaica’s minister of national security, who is collaborating with U.S. officials to stop new Jamaican lottery scams. “We have put in place both legislative and operational measures that will ensure that persons who prey on vulnerable seniors are held accountable.”

You don’t have to live in fear to avoid being a victim. By becoming informed of the latest tactics used by scammers to defraud consumers, you can protect yourself and your finances.

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