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News

LA Council race adds 3 new faces to city politics

LA Council race adds 3 new faces to city politics


The Town Crier chronicled the first election of Los Altos City Council incumbent Jarrett Fishpaw in 2010 and documented the Los Altos candidacy of Jean Mordo, who volunteered as a longtime public servant in Los Altos Hills before moving to the flat...

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Schools

St. Simon launches web-based learning management system

St. Simon launches web-based learning management system


Courtesy of St. Simon Parish School
St. Simon fifth-grader Matthew Cummins uses a laptop in class last week. The school’s cloud-based Schoology system boosts organization and collaboration.

Families at St. Simon Parish School in Los Altos laun...

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Community

Los Altos to celebrate 100 years of library use with 'Centennial Faire'

Los Altos to celebrate 100 years of library use with 'Centennial Faire'


Town Crier File Photo
The Los Altos main library is among the more popular branches in the county library district system, set to celebrate 100 years.

In 1914, Babe Ruth made his debut with the Boston Red Sox, wages hit $5 per day, the first ste...

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Sports

Eagles eye another stellar season

Eagles eye another stellar season


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Los Altos High outside hitter Carmen Annevelink, right, goes for the kill Thursday against Palo Alto, as teammates Sarah Tritschler, left, and Lulu Kishton prepare to play defense. The Eagles won the match in straight ga...

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Comment

Torok, Walter, Dave for MVLA board: Editorial

There’s really nothing major you can criticize about the Mountain View Los Altos Union High School District. It offers a diverse array of effective programs for all types of students. Its instructors, with few exceptions, are outstanding.

Howe...

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Special Sections

'Funabout' Fiat

'Funabout' Fiat


Photos courtesy of Fiat
The 2014 Fiat 500e uses 29 kilowatt-hours per 100 miles, which the engineers claim is the equivalent of 116 mpg of gas use. It has a sticker price of $33,095.

If you believe in climate change, would love to see alternat...

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Business

App developer eyes First Friday as testing ground

App developer eyes First Friday as testing ground


Ted Fagenson

An East Bay app developer is testing his newest creation in downtown Los Altos.

Ted Fagenson, co-founder of Skrownge (pronounced “scrounge”), told the Town Crier that he’s beta testing his mobile gaming app this week ...

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Books

From story to bookstore: Local journey highlights Halloween

From story to bookstore: Local journey highlights Halloween


Courtesy of Dee Ellmann
Jenny Hurwick self-published her picture book last month after decades of storytelling.

During her years working as a teacher and a Los Altos mom, Jenny Hurwick loved to tell stories. One tale she crafted for her son just se...

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People

VINCENT (TIM) MURPHY JR.

VINCENT (TIM) MURPHY JR.

July 27, 1953 – August 12, 2014

Native Los Altan died Medford, OR. Graduated Bellarmine Prep. Married Josephine Domino, 1950. Licensed Auto Mechanic, Private Pilot, skilled Computer Scientist. Tim “could fix anything”. Afflicted with cancer 2001. ...

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Travel

Taking a Turkey trek: Winging it during the World Cup

Taking a Turkey trek: Winging it during the World Cup


Rich Robertson/Special to the Town Crier
The sun sets over the Aegean Sea in Bodrum, Turkey, left.

Tours that whisk you from Istanbul to Bodrum in 11 days are as plentiful as souvenir hawkers in Turkey, but traveling from the Blue Mosque to Topkapi ...

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Stepping Out

'Gypsy' on its way out

'Gypsy' on its way out


Chris Berger/Special to the Town Crier
Alison Koch of Los Altos plays Dainty June in “Gypsy.”

This is the final weekend to catch the Sunnyvale Community Players production of “Gypsy” at the Sunnyvale Theatre. The musical is slated to close Sund...

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Spiritual Life

Ugandan pastor visits U.S. to raise support for children's ministry

Ugandan pastor visits U.S. to raise support for children's ministry


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Herman Lukwago educates children in Uganda.

Imagine life if your father had 25 children and you were raised in poverty in rural Uganda.

Now imagine that you and your siblings were orphaned at an early age and you ass...

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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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Cookbook author offers sweet presentation at Morning Forum


Kathryn Tomaino/Special to the Town Crier
Cookbook author Francine Segan engages the Morning Forum of Los Altos crowd during her Nov. 5 appearance.

Noted cookbook author Francine Segan’s warmth, energy and enthusiasm charmed the Morning Forum of Los Altos audience Nov. 5.

Segan, a food historian and lecturer, is a frequent guest on the Food Network, the Discovery and History channels, CBS and PBS. She based her Morning Forum presentation on her cookbook “Dolci: Italy’s Sweets” (Stewart, Tabori and Chang, 2011).

Upon entering the lecture, Segan gave each attendee a packet of five distinct Italian chocolates. The samples included 85 percent dark chocolate (all chocolate), 70 percent dark chocolate (chocolate and some sugar), 51 percent dark chocolate (chocolate and more sugar), dark chocolate infused with limoncello (chocolate and lemon liqueur) and milk chocolate (one-third chocolate, one-third sugar and one-third milk). She asked the audience to smell the chocolates and listen to the sounds as they snapped off bits of the confections. Finally, audience members tasted the samples to determine their favorites, with Segan describing each one’s unique characteristics.

Chocolate has an Italian history, according to Segan. In the early 1500s, Christopher Columbus discovered cocoa beans in the Mayan region of Central America and brought them back to Spain for Queen Isabella. By the 1800s, Italy became the major manufacturer of chocolate. Today, she said, chocolate is widely loved and eaten in Italy, where espresso is often served with a piece of chocolate.

In “Dolci: Italy’s Sweets,” Segan compiled dessert recipes from all regions of Italy.

“Cooks in each region use different ingredients,” she said.

Segan added that local foods determine desserts.

“Depending on the area, desserts are made with chocolate, herbs, fruits, nuts, honey, cheese and, surprisingly, pasta and vegetables (such as eggplant, spinach and radicchio),” she said. “There are even desserts containing meat.”

While most Italian districts grow nuts, often they grow different nuts, Segan noted.

“Piedmont has hazelnuts, Sicily has almonds and pistachios, and Rome has walnuts,” she said. “Desserts in Piedmont, Sicily and Rome use the nuts that are available.”

There are more than 100 pasta desserts, according to the author, many of which are fried.

“In Italy, anything fried is delicious,” she said.

The Morning Forum of Los Altos is a members-only lecture series that meets at Los Altos United Methodist Church. For membership details and more information, visit morningforum.com.

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