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News

Meet the Mountain View City Council candidates

Meet the Mountain View City Council candidates


Nine candidates have filed to run for three open seats on the Mountain View City Council in the Nov. 4 election – none of them incumbents. The Town Crier asked them to introduce themselves to readers in the following Q&A format. We knew the...

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Schools

LASD committee looks to rank campus improvement projects

LASD committee looks to rank campus improvement projects


Traci Newell/Town Crier
The Los Altos School District’s newly expanded Facilities Advisory Committee met for the first time last week. The 28-member committee’s first task is to prioritize campus improvement projects.

The Los Altos Scho...

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Community

Sports

New-look Lancers find their footing

New-look Lancers find their footing


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
St. Francis High’s Jenna Adams, left, and Carly Deale attempt to bump the ball Friday night. The juniors combined for 28 kills.

This year’s St. Francis High girls volleyball team faintly resembles last season’s squad ...

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Special Sections

MV Whisman teachers cite low pay

MV Whisman teachers cite low pay


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
An estimated 75 supporters of higher teacher pay turned out for the Sept. 4 Mountain View Whisman School District board meeting.

Teachers, trustees and administrators are recovering from a dramatic Mountain View Whism...

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Business

Skin rejuvenation studio joins Rancho

Skin rejuvenation studio joins Rancho


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Esthetician Marjan Kashi showcases one of the treatment rooms at her new studio, Pure Serenity Skincare at Rancho Shopping Center. Kashi provides services including microdermabrasion and various light and heat energy the...

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Books

A woman's perspective on the Greatest Generation

A woman's perspective on the Greatest Generation


During World War II, Virgilia Short Witzel, a young mother and U.S. Navy officer’s wife, grappled on the home front in Menlo Park with wartime rationing, shortages and loneliness. During the ensuing Cold War, she experienced adventure and misadventur...

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People

JERALD (JERRY) NELSON CHRISTIANSEN

JERALD (JERRY) NELSON CHRISTIANSEN

Resident of San Jose and Los Altos, California

July 21, 1931 to August 4, 2014

Born in Arimo, Idaho, to Jerald Emmett and Rebecca Henderson Nelson Christiansen. Raised in Davis and Riverside, California, with summers in Downey, Idaho, and in Loga...

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Travel

LA photographer spends a night with cranes – and moose – in Alaska

LA photographer spends a night with cranes – and moose – in Alaska


Sandy Powell/Special to the Town Crier
Los Altos resident and bird photographer Sandy Powell recently visited Homer, Alaska, to photograph Sandhill cranes, below. While there, Powell also encountered moose, left.

Los Altos resident Sandy Powell, a...

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Stepping Out

Pear puts on a pair of plays

Pear puts on a pair of plays


J. Smith/Special to the Town Crier
Dan Kapler (as Teddy) and Betsy Kruse Craig (Trish) star in Pear Avenue Theatre’s “House.”

The Pear Avenue Theatre production of two interlocking comedies by Alan Ayckbourn – “House&...

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Spiritual Life

Back to Church Sunday offers opportunity to recommit

The children in Los Altos are back to school, and I can still hear parents cheering. Summer is officially over, even if the calendar doesn’t quite think so.

Parents have attended Back to School nights to meet their children’s teachers. B...

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Magazine

Los Altos Hills home showcases resort-inspired living

Los Altos Hills home showcases resort-inspired living


Courtesy of Spectrum Interior Design
In place of a more traditional fireplace, this modern living room features a linear-flame firebox that emits heat while offering a sculpturelike design element.

After traveling the world and visiting a host...

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Local nonprofit brings schools, health care, technology to rural Kenya


Courtesy of the Kilgoris Project
The Kilgoris Project raised funds for the first school built in an area of southwest Kenya, enabling children to receive a formal education.

Lulululululu! That celebratory sound still rings in my ears even after the three weeks since I returned from my most recent trip to rural, southwest Kenya.

Usually I return with good travel stories – this journey is no exception. The Kilgoris Project team and I marked the opening of a new school building in a community that had been forgotten by government and development agencies because of chronic intertribal fighting. A newly brokered peace offered the opportunity to build the area’s first school.

We marked the occasion at a community-hosted event, similar to a huge wedding reception – a revel of Maasai color and ululating enthusiasm.

I witnessed our nonprofit’s progress in this small corner of the globe, celebrating milestones, like the building opening, with Kenyan friends and colleagues.

My husband, Jon, and I founded The Kilgoris Project after a chance encounter in 1999 with Kilgoris villager Willie Lemiso at a safari camp where Willie worked as a waiter. We quickly bonded over our shared Christian faith and struck up a friendship that a few years later blossomed into the organization.

Today, with the generous support of donors and partners from around the world, The Kilgoris Project continues to educate and provide health care for more than 800 students and foster economic development in the community.

Through successive steps of faith (and numerous stumbles), we learned about community-supported development. Now The Kilgoris Project operates six schools for pre- and primary-school students and provides technology, such as Kindles and digital cameras, not easily available in rural Kenya.

Sharing these great stories unites my work and my journey as a Christ-follower. While living in God’s big story, I’m able to share the smaller stories of my moments with my Kenyan partners.

“The truth is, if what we choose to do with our lives won’t make a meaningful story, it won’t make a meaningful life either,” Donald Miller wrote in “A Million Miles in a Thousand Years: How I Learned to Live a Better Story” (Thomas Nelson, 2009).

I couldn’t agree with him more.

Our annual Marketplace will be open at 234 First St. in downtown Los Altos (between the European Cobblery and The Dailey Method) through Sunday. On the outside, the Marketplace is a pop-up boutique offering handmade gifts from Africa, the U.S. and around the world. On the inside, the Marketplace is much more. It’s a place to learn more about The Kilgoris Project’s work and to hear some great stories – mine included.

Proceeds benefit The Kilgoris Project’s education, health and economic development efforts.

The Kilgoris Project Marketplace is slated to be open 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Thursday and Friday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday.

Los Altos resident Caren McNelly McCormack is president and co-founder of The Kilgoris Project. For more information, visit kilgoris.org.

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