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News

LA council votes to delay community center update

LA council votes to delay community center update


Ellie Van Houtte/ Town Crier
The Los Altos City Council voted to delay adoption of a community center conceptual design plan last week. The plan includes elements from a design charette held earlier this fall, left.

The Los Altos City Council last...

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Schools

Scientists bring experiments into MV classrooms

Scientists bring experiments into MV classrooms


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
During a Science is Learning geology lesson, Theuerkauf Elementary School students learn about igneous rocks by observing how sugar changes form when heated.

Hundreds of local elementary students perform experiments w...

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Community

Local actors star in PYT's 'Oklahoma!'

Local actors star in PYT's 'Oklahoma!'


Courtesy of Peninsula Youth Theatre
PYT’s “Oklahoma!” features, from left, David Peters of Mountain View, Jenna Levere of Los Altos and Kai Wessel of Mountain View.

Time is running out to catch Peninsula Youth Theatre’s production of “Oklahoma!”...

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Sports

Eagles advance

Eagles advance


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Los Altos High’s Carmen Annevelink, left, and Kristen Liu put up a block against Mountain View. Annevelink totaled 20 kills.

Mountain View High’s out-of-the-gate energy could last for only so long against rival and he...

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Comment

Coping with addictions: Haugh About That?

Preparing to deal with my lifelong addiction, I stood in front of the mirror ready to confess the shame I’d been hiding. The first step to healing, I reminded myself, is to admit something is wrong.

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Special Sections

NASA, Google agreement preserves Hangar One

NASA, Google agreement preserves Hangar One


Bruce Barton/Town Crier
Hangar One, pictured here last January, will be restored under an agreement between Google and NASA.

NASA and Google Inc. forged an agreement last week that allows Google to lease a portion of NASA’s historic Moffett Fede...

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Business

State Street science center closing Nov. 30

State Street science center closing Nov. 30


Ellie Van Houtte/
Helix at 316 State St. is closing after the completion of a one-year grant from Passerelle Investment Co. The science center became a popular destination because of its various exhibits. Town Crier

A popular downtown destination...

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Books

Children's author signs books at Linden Tree

Children's author signs books at Linden Tree


Author Tiffany Papageorge is scheduled to sign copies of new her book 11 a.m. Dec. 6 at Linden Tree Books, 265 State St., Los Altos.

Papageorge’s “My Yellow Balloon” (Minoan Moon, 2014) is a Mom’s Choice “Gold” winner. In the book, the Los Gat...

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People

JAMES WINDELL SMITH

JAMES WINDELL SMITH

January 11, 1939 – November 6, 2014
Resident of Mountain View

James Windell Smith, a 40 year resident of Los Altos, passed away from complications after a post-surgery stroke November 6th, 2014 in Los Gatos, California.

Born on January 11, 1939 on...

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Travel

Olive Sonoma: There's more to the quaint town than wine

Olive Sonoma: There's more to the quaint town than wine


Eren Göknar/ Special to the Town Crier
While many day-trippers may think that Sonoma is all about the grapes, the region boasts other delights. Try a biplane ride over the patchwork landscape.

Sonoma, a scenic two-hour drive from Los Altos, boa...

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Stepping Out

LA Stage Company opens 'Fairway'

The Los Altos Stage Company production of Ken Ludwig’s new comedy “The Fox on the Fairway” is slated to run Thursday through Dec. 14 at Bus Barn Theater, 97 Hillview Ave.

A tribute to the English farces of the 1930s and 1940s, “Fox” is a romp that p...

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Spiritual Life

Author of Jewish historical novel slated at Congregation Beth Am

Author of Jewish historical novel slated at Congregation Beth Am


The Beth Am Women have scheduled “A Conversation with Author Maggie Anton” 7:30 p.m. Nov. 20 at Congregation Beth Am, 26790 Arastradero Road, Los Altos Hills.

Anton, winner of the 2012 National Jewish Book Award for Fiction, will discu...

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Magazine

Christmas At Our House home tour celebrates 26 years

Christmas At Our House home tour celebrates 26 years


Courtesy of Christopher Stark
Homes on the St. Francis High School Women’s Club’s Christmas at Our House Holiday Home Tour showcase a variety of architectural styles.

The days grow short on sunshine but long on nostalgia as the holidays approach...

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Festival of Lights parade set to float into Los Altos Sunday


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
The annual Festival of Lights Parade features the new “Penguin Palooza” float.

This year’s Los Altos Festival of Lights Parade will offer a new entry among its lineup. Prepare for “Penguin Palooza” during the 37th annual event, scheduled 6 p.m. Sunday in downtown Los Altos.

“Penguin Palooza,” two years in the making, features penguins in colorful winter clothing enjoying a party with ice skating, fishing and roasting marshmallows. The new float was created on the bed of “It’s a Small World,” one of the parade’s oldest floats.

“Marie Backs and I have wanted to do skating penguins for a long time,” said Nancy Schneider of her co-worker at the all-volunteer Festival of Lights Parade Association. “I saw ‘Happy Feet’ and thought it had such appeal to all ages. Also, we both thought it was unique, totally different from anything else we had since it featured animals.”

According to Schneider, preparing the new float took much time and effort.

“We had San Jose Repertory Theatre update the base of the float early this year, fix the mechanics, and then had a group from the Stanford University Department of Theater and Performance Studies finish it up,” she said. “It wasn’t easy. There wasn’t anywhere to put the float to work on and finish it up. Erik Sunderman, an assistant technical director at Stanford, actually had to bring the float to his house and work on it there.”

Nonetheless, the project proved a labor of love.

“We had such fun thinking of the colors and the types of costumes to put on the penguins,” Schneider said.

Parade volunteers also redesigned the Mother Goose float.

“She is now sitting with bright-orange feet and a fancy bonnet reading her nursery rhymes, accompanied by her storybook characters,” Schneider said.

The revamped float is courtesy of Jacob Kidd, who worked on Mother Goose for his Boy Scout Troop 37 Eagle Scout project.

The parade’s 60 entries, including high school bands and choruses, costumed characters and 24 illuminated floats, all lead up to the grand finale – an appearance by Santa and his reindeer.

Parade organizers urge attendees to refrain from staking out a viewing spot until noon the day of the parade.

“Please do not use tape and chalk – it makes cleanup very difficult,” Schneider said. “Mark your place with blankets or tarps.”

The Festival of Lights Parade Association produces the parade, which costs nearly $20,000 annually.

“We would appreciate your donations, which allow us to update our floats and costumes,” Schneider said.

For more information, including parade routes and guidelines, visit losaltosparade.com. If there is a rain delay, information will be posted on the parade website after 3 p.m. Sunday. If the parade is rained out, it will be rescheduled Dec. 8.

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