BCS board backs agreement to occupy Egan site

The Bullis Charter School Board of Directors (BCS)...

City council directive puts brakes on RV street dwelling in Mountain View

City council directive puts brakes on RV street dwelling in Mountain View

Megan V. Winslow/Town Crier
A car drives past r...
LA Library revives Food for Fines program

LA Library revives Food for Fines program

Megan V. Winslow/Town Crier
Marlene Iwamoto, Lo...
LA girls enter De Anza meet as Top 8 champs

LA girls enter De Anza meet as Top 8 champs

Megan V. Winslow/Town Crier
Jessie Carlson, cen...
Finding finery: Princess Project unites fairy godmothers, prom-bound teens

Finding finery: Princess Project unites fairy godmothers, prom-bound teens


Above Photo Courtesy of Katie Matice; Below Phot...

Schools

BCS board backs agreement to occupy Egan site

1 DAY Ago  |  Bruce Barton

The Bullis Charter School Board of Directors (BCS) unanimously voted April 22 in favor of a proposed 10-year agreement that would place the charter sc...

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Community

Pet of the Week - week of April 24

Pet of the Week - week of April 24

2 Days Ago  |  Los Altos Town Crier Staff

Courtesy of Pets In Need
Hans is available for adoption through Pets In Need.

Hans is an 18-month-old male terrier mix available for adoption th...

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Sports

Panthers feast at the plate

Panthers feast at the plate

2 Days Ago  |  Pete Borello - Staff Writer/peteb@latc.com

Megan V. Winslow/Town Crier
Pinewood School’s Max Banning makes contact in last week’s game against Downtown College Prep. The Panthers prevailed 3...

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Business

People

Dolores 'Dodie' Alexander: Led formation of Community Health Awareness Council

Dolores 'Dodie' Alexander: Led formation of Community Health Awareness Council

2 Days Ago  |  Los Altos Town Crier Staff - Town Crier Staff Report


Mrs. Alexander

Dolores “Dodie” Alexander, a longtime community leader and co-founder of the Community Health Awareness Council, died March 20 in ...

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Magazine

News

‘Operation Varsity Blues’ tennis coach pleads guilty

13 HOURS AGO

The former University of Texas at Austin tennis coach accused of accepting bribes to help a local student get into the college pleaded guilty Wednesday (April 24) to charges that could send him to prison for decades. 

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Records request reveals hushed city settlement

1 DAY AGO

The city of Los Altos paid a former maintenance department employee $50,000 three years ago after he alleged that his supervisor assaulted him, according to information the Town Crier recently uncovered through a public records request. The maintenance worker has since left the city, but the supervi...

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Schools

BCS board backs agreement to occupy Egan site

14 HOURS AGO

The Bullis Charter School Board of Directors (BCS) unanimously voted April 22 in favor of a proposed 10-year agreement that would place the charter school exclusively at the Egan Junior High School campus at Portola Avenue and San Antonio Road in Los Altos.

The agreement essentially moves the Egan ...

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Model students: LAHS team wins national math competition

1 DAY AGO
Model students: LAHS team wins national math competition

Courtesy of The Actuarial Foundation
Karina Halevy, from left, Maxwell Liu, Josh Hejna, Rushil Arora and Shawn Huang won the Modeling the Future Challenge.

There may be no sure-fire way to predict the future, but mathematical modeling can paint a good picture of what may lie ahead.

For Los Altos H...

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Community

Pet of the Week - week of April 24

1 DAY AGO
Pet of the Week - week of April 24
Courtesy of Pets In Need
Hans is available for adoption through Pets In Need.

Hans is an 18-month-old male terrier mix available for adoption through Pets In Need. He is initially shy around new people, but it doesn’t take him long to warm up, according to Pets In Need reps. His favorite hango...

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Groups near and far benefit from Rotary art show

1 DAY AGO

The Rotary Club of Los Altos’ goal for its annual Fine Art in the Park fundraiser, scheduled May 18 and 19 in Lincoln Park, is to donate proceeds to local and international organizations.

One local recipient is Mentor Tutor Connection, launched by the Rotary Club in 1996. The nonprofit Mentor Tutor...

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Sports

Panthers feast at the plate

1 DAY AGO
Panthers feast at the plate
Megan V. Winslow/Town Crier
Pinewood School’s Max Banning makes contact in last week’s game against Downtown College Prep. The Panthers prevailed 35-0 at Purissima Park in Los Altos Hills.

The Pinewood School baseball team isn’t just beating league opponents – the Panthers are pulverizing them...

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LA girls enter De Anza meet as Top 8 champs

1 DAY AGO
LA girls enter De Anza meet as Top 8 champs
Megan V. Winslow/Town Crier
Jessie Carlson, center, sprints against Mountain View in a recent dual meet. She helped the Los Altos girls set a season-best time in the 4x400 relay April 13 at the CCS Top 8 meet.

The SCVAL De Anza track and field trials and finals are scheduled this week at Los A...

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Comment

No Shoes, Please: Town Crier columnist leaving for East Bay, says thanks for the memories

1 DAY AGO

When our family originally moved from Mountain View to Los Altos, we thought our newly purchased home cost more than what anyone ought to pay for a three-bedroom fixer-upper, but the joke at the time was that in Los Altos, you pay for the land and the house itself is free. That said, the property ha...

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Letters to the Editor - week of April 24

1 DAY AGO

Egan students deserve better

I respectfully disagree with the April 10 editorial (“Bombshell deal just might work”) and Nancy Bremeau’s letter (“LASD scores an ‘A’ for 10th-site plan”) concerning the deal to give the whole of the Egan Junior High School campus to Bullis Charter School and move Egan...

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Special Sections

A walk through the history of roses as a wedding flower

1 DAY AGO
A walk through the history of roses as a wedding flower

Photo Courtesy of Pexels.com
Roses are often a surprisingly affordable option to use as wedding flowers.

In recent years, the most famous wedding has been Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s royal celebration last May.

Florist Philippa Craddock and her team arranged their flowers, using flowers a...

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Words of wisdom for newlyweds

1 DAY AGO
Words of wisdom for newlyweds

Courtesy of Nancy Andersen
At Nancy Andersen and her husband’s wedding, their guests offered sage advice on how to maintain a happy marriage.

On a beautiful September afternoon, my husband and I joined hands and vowed to love each other ’til death parts us. Our friends and family gather...

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Business

Transactions for the week of April 24

1 DAY AGO

Los Altos

594 Benvenue Avenue, Rochman Family Trust to L. & L. Gao for $3,605,000

1650 Crestview Drive, Wang Family Trust to J. & U. Har for $5,500,000

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Frequently asked question: What's my house worth?

1 DAY AGO

The most frequently asked question I get after “So, how’s the market?” is “How much is my house worth?” Unfortunately, as much as we would all like to think there is some intrinsic value as to what something is worth, it just isn’t true – especially in real estate.

Following are answers to a few qu...

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People

Dolores 'Dodie' Alexander: Led formation of Community Health Awareness Council

1 DAY AGO
Dolores 'Dodie' Alexander: Led formation of Community Health Awareness Council

Mrs. Alexander

Dolores “Dodie” Alexander, a longtime community leader and co-founder of the Community Health Awareness Council, died March 20 in Penn Valley. Mrs. Alexander was 88.

The mother of five children, the former Los Altos resident was the key force behind the formation of CHAC in 1973...

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Emily Parcel Martin

1 DAY AGO

Los Altos-area resident Emily Parcel Martin passed away at age 94 on Wednesday, April 3rd.  She passed peacefully with her family present. Born in 1924, to Columbus and Bernice in Colorado, Emily grew up in the Denver area and completed her B.A. in Social Work at the University of Denver. She m...

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Obituaries

Dolores 'Dodie' Alexander: Led formation of Community Health Awareness Council

1 DAY AGO
Dolores 'Dodie' Alexander: Led formation of Community Health Awareness Council

Mrs. Alexander

Dolores “Dodie” Alexander, a longtime community leader and co-founder of the Community Health Awareness Council, died March 20 in Penn Valley. Mrs. Alexander was 88.

The mother of five children, the former Los Altos resident was the key force behind the formation of CHAC in 1973...

Readmore

Emily Parcel Martin

1 DAY AGO

Los Altos-area resident Emily Parcel Martin passed away at age 94 on Wednesday, April 3rd.  She passed peacefully with her family present. Born in 1924, to Columbus and Bernice in Colorado, Emily grew up in the Denver area and completed her B.A. in Social Work at the University of Denver. She m...

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Stepping Out

LA Stage Company continues to produce 'Grapes'

1 DAY AGO

Los Altos Stage Company presents Frank Galati’s stage adaptation of the John Steinbeck novel “The Grapes of Wrath,” slated to run through May 5 at Bus Barn Theater.

Steinbeck’s novel was published 80 years ago and is considered a classic work of Americana.

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Musical 'Wiz' opens this weekend in Sunnyvale

1 DAY AGO

The Sunnyvale Community Players production of “The Wiz” is scheduled to open Saturday night and run through May 19 at the Sunnyvale Community Center, 550 E. Remington Drive.

Adapted from L. Frank Baum’s novel “The Wonderful Wizard of Oz,” the musical was written by William F. Brown. It features mus...

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Spiritual Life

Pastor's Perspective: Faith is built on a one-time event – the Resurrection of Jesus Christ

8 DAYS AGO

Christians don’t base their faith in Jesus on the story of creation in the Bible. Good Christians disagree about where on the scale of literal to allegorical the first few chapters of the Bible are exactly, so it is clear that our faith is not based on that. Our faith isn’t based on the correct vers...

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Foothills Congregational Church hosts Zen book signing May 4

8 DAYS AGO

Foothills Congregational Church is scheduled to host a book signing with authors Les Kaye and Teresa Bouza 5-6:30 p.m. May 4 in the church’s Parish Hall, 461 Orange Ave., Los Altos.

Kaye and Bouza are co-authors of “A Sense of Something Greater: Zen and the Search for Balance in Silicon Valley” (Pa...

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Magazine

Oldest house in Los Altos: Merriman site serves as backdrop for museum fundraiser

1 DAY AGO
Oldest house in Los Altos: Merriman site serves as backdrop for museum fundraiser

Town Crier File Photo
The Winchester-Merriman House on Edgewood Lane is considered the oldest standing home in Los Altos.

Los Altos History Museum supporters have scheduled a fundraiser, "A Los Altos Garden Party Evenig of Memories and Mysteries," 5:30-8:30 p.m. June 14 at the historical Winche...

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Fun with elderberry: How to use a native plant in flower, fruit and stem

1 DAY AGO
Fun with elderberry: How to use a native plant in flower, fruit and stem

Photos by Tanya Kucak/ Special to the Town Crier
Antonio Flores, above, plays traditional Native American tunes on his elderberry flute. The “blanks” for elderberry flutes are approximately 8 inches long, cut from a dead dry branch.

In the 1944 movie "Arsenic and Old Lace," the elderberry w...

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College goes to top of the class for saving water


Megan V. Winslow/Town Crier
Students in Dan Svenson’s Landscape Design Irrigation class at Foothill College examine nursery plants that can benefit from the horticulture department’s award-winning rain catchment systems.

In a time of crippling drought, Foothill College is earning props for some impressive water-saving projects conservationists hope that institutions, businesses and homeowners alike can learn from.

The Silicon Valley Water Conservation Awards coalition recognized the college’s environmental horticulture program March 23 as its 2015 organization category winner. The program’s cooling tower recapture system, rainwater catchment systems and recirculating water feature beat out eight other applicants in the category.

“It was very exciting, and it was wonderful to be recognized for our work at Foothill,” said Kathleen Santora, president of the Foothill-De Anza Foundation and benefactor of some of the Foothill projects.

The Environmental Horticulture Program’s succession of water-conservation projects began with the resurrection of a once-natural water feature. Decades ago, a creek meandered down from the hills and through Foothill’s campus before reaching the Bay. But throughout the years, construction of school buildings obscured the flow.

On the suggestion of horticulture faculty member Dan Svenson, the college installed a 125-foot-long recirculating stream, an educational tool demonstrating responsible landscape design techniques to students. Rainwater collected from the roof of the program’s construction lab building feeds into the stream, saving between 4,000 and 5,000 gallons of water each year.

The goal was to show that landscape designs could include attractive water features and still adhere to responsible, self-supporting water-conservation principles, Svenson said.

Santora, a Los Altos Hills resident who first enrolled in Foothill horticulture classes to learn methods for limiting water use on her own property, was inspired to fund a water conservation symposium, “Slow the Flow,” at the college. She helped secure grant support from the Schmidt Family Foundation’s 11th Hour Project for the installation of rainwater harvesting systems – one that provides water to the horticulture program’s nursery plants and a low-profile, 610-gallon system installed to show homeowners how to implement smaller-scale rainwater catchment efforts. Combined, the systems save approximately 30,000 gallons of water a year.

Conservation role model

Perhaps the horticulture program’s most significant contribution to water conservation is its cooling tower project. A year and a half ago, Svenson discovered that a large volume of water plunged into sewers after it cooled towers providing air conditioning across campus. Santora had the water tested. Although the runoff wasn’t suitable for human consumption, it would suffice to water lawns and ornamental plants. Now a recapture system reroutes the discharge to irrigation storage tanks, saving the district 50,000 gallons of water each year.

“Instead of throwing it down the drain, we captured it and redirected it to water the landscaping,” Santora said.

In addition to Santora, the Foothill-De Anza facilities department, including Tim Mechikoff and Mike Diefenbach, and numerous Foothill students, including Julie Davis, were instrumental in the completion of the cooling towers project, Svenson said.

Conservation accolades aside, Foothill College’s outreach efforts have made it a role model, according to Peter Drekmeier, policy director of coalition member organization Tuolumne River Trust.

“By educating others through tours and offering more than a dozen courses and seminars on water conservation and reuse, they’re leading the way in preparing our community for an uncertain water future as we appear to be entering a new area of extended droughts,” Drekmeier wrote in an email.

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