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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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Simple ways to minimize impact of potential wedding mishaps

Your wedding is supposed to be one of the happiest days of your life, but what happens when the caterer closes, the head count is wrong and the band is a no-show? More than one couple has experienced these types of wedding disasters.

Make sure that your wedding day is filled with blissful memories by taking a few steps to protect yourself from the financial and emotional impact of nuptial dilemmas and put your mind at ease.

• Solidify a budget. The average wedding costs a whopping $28,427, according to TheKnot.com, which means that couples are spending big bucks to say “I do.” Whether you’re able to spend $5,000 or more than $50,000, it’s important to create a realistic budget and stick with it throughout the wedding-planning process.

A good way to stay within budget is to set priorities. Do you care more about the food and not so much about the flowers? Allot more funds for catering and keep the bouquet modest. Create a spreadsheet and involve your partner so that you are on the same page. No one wants to be mid-wedding planning and realize that they can’t afford what they promised guests – or worse, have a huge bill at the end that risk delays to other goals, such as buying a home.

• Purchase wedding insurance. Imagine that it’s two weeks before the wedding and you just discovered that the reception hall suddenly closed, the tailor lost your dress or the photographer was in a car accident and can’t attend the ceremony. There’s always an element of the unknown, and when so much money and emotion are involved in an event like a wedding, it’s crucial to get wedding insurance.

“Wedding cancellation insurance can help cover losses for deposits sent to businesses that have unexpectedly closed, replacement of damaged wedding dresses and attire, and restaging of photos if a photographer is a no-show,” said Steve Lauro, vice president of Aon’s WedSafe wedding insurance program. “It may even cover up to the full cost of your wedding if your event is postponed due to unforeseen circumstances, such as extreme weather or a venue shutting its doors.”

Event Liability insurance, required by many venues, is another type of coverage that may protect your wedding, Lauro added.

• Investigate venues and vendors. National average wedding costs include $2,379 for a photographer, $1,997 for a florist, $12,905 for a reception venue and $63 per guest for catering. When investing so much money in a wedding, make sure that the businesses you select are the best of the best. Spend time researching different venues and vendors before signing on the dotted line.

When researching, make sure that each business carries liability insurance. Ask for references and spend time emailing and making calls. Check out every business on BBB.org and read online reviews.

• Stay organized and confirm details one month out. Many couples plan a wedding a year or more out, so it’s important a month prior to confirm all the details to ensure a smooth and beautiful wedding day. Call vendors and event sites to verify times and services.

You’ll receive lots of paperwork during the wedding-planning process. Keep copies of all contracts in a specified folder. Record how much was put down on deposits and when additional amounts are due so that you don’t miss a payment.

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