Town Crier announces winners in Spooky Stories contest

Fourth-grader Noah Levy won first place in the Town Crier’s annual Spooky Stories contest.

Noah received more than 50 votes for his humorous tale, “The Difference Between a Scary and Non-Scary Halloween.”


How successful was ALearn event? Let us count the ways

courtesy of Kim Guptill
Barry Groves, from left, superintendent of the Mountain View Los Altos Union High School District, joins forces with Lisa Sobrato Sonsini and ALearn founder Kathryn Hanson.

More than 350 people attended ALearn’s Dream Makers Dinner Oct. 15, generating $286,675 for the nonprofit organization’s efforts to help underserved students prepare for college.

At the event, held at the Computer History Museum in Mountain View, ALearn honored Lisa Sobrato Sonsini and Sobrato Philanthropies for their contributions. ALearn also recognized participating students, teachers and teaching assistants.


ECH's Behavioral Health Services receives $1 million from Los Altos couple

Ellie Van Houtte/Town Crier
Donna and John Shoemaker are all smiles as they announce their $1 million donation to El Camino Hospital’s Behavioral Health Services.

It didn’t take a direct personal connection to a serious behavioral-health-related matter to inspire a Los Altos couple to invest in local families.

“When you see a child take their life, it’s your child. Or when you see a senior who has lost their spouse and is depressed, it’s our parent,” said Donna Shoemaker of why she and her husband, John, recently donated $1 million to boost Behavioral Health Services at El Camino Hospital. “This hospital is a place where we feel safe and where we want other people to come and feel safe.”


Morning Forum speaker puts teacher tenure on trial to 'fix' public education

Kathryn Tomaino/Special to the Town Crier
Students Matter founder David Welch addresses the Morning Forum of Los Altos Oct. 21.

Students Matter founder David Welch, Ph.D., has spent the past three years using his time and money to change an education system that he claims “doesn’t prioritize the interests of its students and ... denies them access to quality teaching.”

In his Oct. 21 Morning Forum of Los Altos presentation, “Vergara v. California: For a Basically Equal Opportunity to a Quality Education,” Welch, a fiber-optics engineer, inventor and co-founder and president of Infinera Corp., said his work with the nonprofit Students Matter centers on the premises that “it’s never acceptable to place an ineffective teacher in the classroom” and that effective teachers are the key to helping low-income students succeed.


Al Galedrige: World War II veteran remembers 'Price of Glory'

Photos Courtesy of Al Galedrige
Al Galedrige of Los Altos fought at Iwo Jima in 1945.

Editor’s note: Al Galedrige, perhaps better known as “Al the Barber,” achieved legendary status in downtown Los Altos after more than seven decades of cutting hair – and telling jokes – at Al’s Barber Shop. Perhaps less known is Galedrige’s contributions to World War II as a member of what broadcaster and author Tom Brokaw deemed “The Greatest Generation.” With Veterans Day Tuesday, Galedrige was inspired to tell his story to the Town Crier.


Garden Club of Los Altos celebrates 85 years planting seeds of friendship

ing Garden Club of Los Altos members share memories at last week’s anniversary party. Pictured are, from left, Joan Tankersley (40 years), Jean Gillette (46 years), Helen Sherwood (41 years) and Marguerite Appling (44 years).

Several hundred women in wide-brimmed hats and flower-patterned dresses sat at circular tables for an Oct. 28 buffet-style lunch at Los Altos Lutheran Church, gathering to celebrate the Garden Club of Los Altos’ 85th anniversary.

In a tradition that’s flourished since 1929, the convivial group of mostly female green thumbs congregates monthly to share gardening know-how and flower-arranging advice.


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