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News

Spooktacular moved indoors


Due to rain, today's downtown Los Altos Halloween activities have been moved to the indoor courtyard of Play! at 170 State St. Enter from the back on the parking lot side to participate in crafts, games and fun. Activities continue until 4 p.m.

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Schools

Gardner Bullis School debuts new Grizzly Student Center

Gardner Bullis School debuts new Grizzly Student Center


Photo by Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Students line up to check books out of the library in the new Grizzly Student Center at Gardner Bullis School.

Gardner Bullis School opened its new Grizzly Student Center earlier this month, introducing a lea...

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Community

Home improvement workshop scheduled Wednesday (Oct. 29)

The County of Santa Clara is hosting a free informational workshop on 6:30 p.m. Wednesday at Los Altos Hills Town Hall, 26379 Fremont Road.

The workshop will offer ways single-family homeowners can increase their homes’ energy efficiency. Eligible i...

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Comment

Off the fence: TC recommends 'yes' on N

The Town Crier initially offered no position on the controversial $150 million Measure N bond on Tuesday’s ballot. But some of the reasons we gave in our Oct. 15 editorial were, on reflection, overly critical and based on inaccurate information.

We ...

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Special Sections

Long-term solutions emerge as water conservation goes mainstream

Long-term solutions emerge as water conservation goes mainstream


Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Forrest Linebarger, right, installed greywater and rainwater harvesting systems at his Los Altos Hills home.

With more brown than green visible in her Los Altos backyard, Kacey Fitzpatrick admits that she’s a little e...

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Business

Local realtors scare up money for charity

Local realtors scare up money for charity


Photo courtesy of SILVAR
Realtors Gary Campi and Jordan Legge, from left, joined Nancy Domich, SILVAR President Dave Tonna and Joe Brown to raise funds for the Silicon Valley Realtors Charitable Foundation.

Los Altos and Mountain View realtors raise...

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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

DAVID S. NIVISON

DAVID S. NIVISON

David S. Nivison, 91 years old, and a resident of Los Altos, California since 1952, died Oct. 16, 2014 at home.  His neighbors had recently honored him as the “Mayor of Russell Ave., in recognition of 62 years of distinguished living” on that ...

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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

ECYS opens season Sunday

ECYS opens season Sunday


Ramya Krishna/Special to the Town Crier
The El Camino Youth Symphony rehearses for Sunday’s concert, above.

The El Camino Youth Symphony – under new conductor Jindong Cai – is scheduled to perform its season-opening concert 4 p.m....

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Spiritual Life

Christian Science Reading Room hosts webinar on prayer and healing

Christian Science practitioner and teacher Evan Mehlenbacher is scheduled to present a live Internet webinar lecture, “Prayer That Heals,” 7:30 p.m. Nov. 14 in the Christian Science Reading Room, 60 Main St., Los Altos.

Those interested ...

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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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