Vaunted villa : Geschkes open gardens of Los Altos estate for History Museum gala

Megan V. Winslow/Town Crier
The Los Altos home of Nan and Chuck Geschke boasts colorful flowers nestled among the redwoods, ancient oaks and Deodar cedars. The Los Altos History Museum has scheduled its spring gala at the estate May 7.

Nan and Chuck Geschke, 2003 Los Altans of the Year, have shared their home on University Avenue in Los Altos with the community for two decades.

And they will be doing it again - somewhat of a swan song before they downsize to a townhome downtown - when they host a benefit for the Los Altos History Museum May 7. Nan has played a major role in the creation of the museum through philanthropy and volunteering.


Smaller is better : Tips for shaping deciduous fruit trees

Rather than buying the largest container you can, fruit-tree specialist Ann Ralph suggests selecting a younger, thinner deciduous fruit-tree sapling in bareroot season, around the beginning of the year. Typically, you will see saplings over 5 feet high. Make the all-important knee-high cut either before you leave the nursery or as soon as you plant it.
Tanya Kucak/Special to the Town Crier

It’s worth pondering who - or what - eats most of the bounty from your backyard fruit trees.

Is it your family and friends or the squirrels and roof rats? Does too much of it rot on the ground? What if you could pick all of the fruit without a ladder, it were higher quality and the tree took up less space in your garden?


It’s 2016 – do you know where your town has been?

Stephanie Smith/Town Crier; Below Courtesy of Los Altos History Museum The Copeland Building at First and Main Streets, above, harks back to Los Altos’ early days. The aesthetic of downtown has changed a bit since the first building – Eschenbruecher Hardware, below – was erected in 1908.
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While much evidence of Los Altos’ early days is long gone or hidden, some hints of the past are still visible - in street names, buildings, old houses and even a remnant of an orchard here and there.


How to hire an estate-sale company

COurtesy of Amanda Kuzak
If an estate-sale company sets realistic expectations when hosting a sale, the sellers will end up with smiles on their faces.

It’s time to say goodbye to Grandma’s knitted owl collection and somehow break down Grandpa’s garage - the tool benches, weird springs and connectors he always liked. The entire house is packed, and the realtor ordered you to have it empty by May 1. Anxious yet?

The spring real estate market is in full swing, and my phone is ringing off the hook as homeowners and realtors are under pressure to empty estates. When I discuss with families the management of their estates and the liquidation process, they all have one thing in common: feeling overwhelmed.


Charting Los Altos Hills’ evolution

Special to the Town Crier Views like that of San Francisco Bay from Byrne Preserve helped attract Silicon Valley’s elite to Los Altos Hills’ oft-lauded rural charm.

Jan. 27 marked the 60th anniversary of Los Altos Hills’ incorporation as a town. City officials celebrated the landmark with a gala event and publication of a town anthology, available as an e-book online at Longtime residents Jitze and Nancy Couperus offer their firsthand accounts of the changes the town has undergone through the years.

When Los Altos Hills was born as a town, it was still heavily agricultural, still untouched by the suburban growth that flanked El Camino Real. There was no Interstate 280, and beyond the border of Palo Alto, Page Mill Road was little more than a shady two-lane road meandering alongside a creek toward the coastal hills. El Monte and Magdalena were similarly insignificant roads leading to orchard farms or grazing land.


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