Tue09162014

News

Council approves directional signs for Los Altos' Woodland Plaza

Council approves directional signs for Los Altos' Woodland Plaza


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
The Los Altos City Council last week approved the installation of two new directional signs on Foothill Expressway pointing motorists to the Woodland Plaza Shopping District.

The Los Altos City Council voted unanimou...

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Schools

New head of curriculum’s ideologies align with LASD

New head of curriculum’s ideologies align with LASD


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Edsel Clark, new Los Altos School District assistant superintendent for curriculum and instruction, above, facilitates a junior high mathematics curriculum meeting last week.

Edsel Clark, Ed.D., new assistant superintend...

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Community

Closing reception caps Foothill photo show on rural China

Closing reception caps Foothill photo show on rural China


From IncredibleTravelPhotos.com
Jacque Kae’s “Mischievous” is one of the many photographs on display at Foothill College this month.

Photographs of the land and culture of Huangshan and Zhangjiajie, China, are on exhibit through Sept. 26 at t...

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Sports

Spartans shine in opener

Spartans shine in opener


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Mountain View High’s Frank Kapp snares a touchdown pass from quarterback Owen Mountford in Friday’s win.

Leading by a point at halftime, the Mountain View High football team outscored visiting Del Mar 20-0 the rest of...

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Comment

A look ahead to the Nov. 4 election: Editorial

Election season is upon us. In Los Altos, we have three major local races ahead – two seats on the Los Altos City Council, and three seats each on the Los Altos School District and Mountain View-Los Altos Union High School District boards of tr...

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Special Sections

Renovation complete,  Villa Siena looks to future

Renovation complete, Villa Siena looks to future


Above and Below Photos Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier; Left Photo Courtesy of Villa Siena
Villa Siena in Mountain View recently underwent a $35 million face-lift. The five-year project expanded their senior living community’s space and ability to serv...

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Business

Transitioning from postage to pets

Transitioning from postage to pets


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
A new Pet Food Express store is scheduled to open at the Blossom Valley Shopping Center this month.

A site that previously existed to meet postal service needs will soon have an entirely different purpose – serving pe...

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Books

‘The Humans’ transcends alien genre to glean human insights

‘The Humans’ transcends alien genre to glean human insights


A good story about aliens is always great fun to read – after all, it’s only by attempting to understand the human race from another perspective that we can see ourselves more objectively.

But readers who might be tempted to dismiss ye...

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People

JEANNE PACKARD

After suffering a stroke in May, Jeanne Packard died August 10, 2014 at age 83. She was born in 1931 in Berlin, Germany, the only child of Emily Channel and Frank Howe Packard of Chicago, IL. Jeanne is survived by 5 great grandchildren. She was a lon...

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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

'Trailer Park' opens in Los Altos

'Trailer Park' opens in Los Altos


Courtesy of Los
The cast of Los Altos Stage Company’s “The Great American Trailer Park Musical” includes, from left, Mylissa Malley as Lin, Vanessa Alvarez as Betty, and Christina Bolognini as Pickles. Altos Stage Company

Los Altos Stage Company...

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Spiritual Life

9/11 survivor Michael Hingson finds purpose

Imagine walking down 78 flights of stairs – 1,463 individual steps. You are in imminent danger as you walk, unsure whether you can make it out of the building before it collapses or explodes. Struggling for each breath, you smell the heavy sten...

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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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Berlin Wall goes back up: Dedication of segments at MV library reflects change from Cold War icon to symbol of freedom


The dedication of the Berlin Wall, above, draws a large turnout at the Mountain View Public Library.

November 1989 marked the official fall of the infamous Berlin Wall, a Cold War icon that divided countries, political ideologies and family members. Recognizing the 24th anniversary of that historic event, Mountain View made history of its own Thursday when city officials and a prominent German family officially dedicated two segments of the wall in front of the city’s library.

San Francisco German Consul General Peter Rothen also was on hand to show his country’s appreciation of the city’s efforts to preserve and install the two 12-foot-high, multi-ton concrete slabs as historic monuments.

“This is a joyful occasion,” said Rothen, who referred to the wall remnants as “beautiful pieces that are now artwork.”

The two segments, adjacent to the front entrance of the library at 585 Franklin St., are encased in glass and stand adjacent to one another.

“These pieces should be seen by as many people as possible,” Rothen said, noting that the wall as a whole was a symbol of oppression but these dedicated pieces are now “symbols of freedom and democracy, and German-American friendships.”

Erected in 1961, the Berlin Wall separated East and West Germany. It ran for 96 miles and denied passage between the two sides. The fall of communism and the Soviet Union led to a prophecy fulfilled when then-President Ronald Reagan said to former Soviet Premier Mikhail Gorbachev, “Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall.”

Shortly after the wall fell, Mountain View residents Frank R. Golzen and Kunigunda Golzen had two segments transported to property they owned on Marine Way. The segments stood on display on the Golzens’ land for more than 20 years until Frank passed away in 2008. Frank felt that the segments symbolized American resolve and freedom.

“Dad felt bringing a section of the Berlin Wall to the United States was a unique opportunity,” said daughter Renee Roberts, representing Golzen family members in attendance.

Roberts said her parents were born and raised in Germany but moved to America prior to World War II for a better way of life. The Golzens operated a successful Mountain View business for several decades.

Family members sold the Marine Way property last year. Concurrent with the sale, the family approached the city about the Berlin Wall sections. The city council accepted the segments Sept. 18, 2012, as a donation from the family.

The Visual Arts Committee, councilmembers and city staff selected the location in front of the library.

Both wall segments are littered with graffiti, drawn on the West German side.

One section shows an Elvis caricature, and scrawled on the other section is “Wir Lieben Dich,” which means “We Love You.”

Rothen said approximately 50 such Berlin Wall segments are now in the U.S., eight in California. Only two pairs are located in Northern California – the other pair is in Monterey.

In addition to introductory comments by Mayor John Inks, last week’s ceremony featured a performance by the string orchestra section of the Mountain View-based German International School of Silicon Valley.

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