Residents gather to celebrate new heritage orchard sign

Bruce Barton/Town Crier

The Los Altos Heritage Orchard has been a registered historic landmark since 1978, but it never had its own sign – until this month. City workers installed the orchard’s first sign – facing San Antonio Road, between city hall and the Los Altos main library – and 79 residents gathered there July 12 to celebrate it. Mayor Lynette Lee Eng attended the impromptu event, biologist Jane Packard brought fresh apricots and local businesswoman Catherine Nunes brought dried ones. Writer Robin Chapman gave a quick talk on the orchard’s history. Other attendees included Margo Horn and Larry Lang from the Los Altos Historical Commission; Elisabeth Ward, executive director of the Los Altos History Museum; Phil Doetsch, the orchard’s orchardist; Lisa Chung, representing State Sen. Jerry Hill’s office; and Pinky Whalen, Los Altos Historic Preservation Award recipient. The Los Altos History Museum plans to hold a more formal dedication ceremony later this summer.

Los Altos resident's woodworking gifts show appreciation

Megan V. Winslow/Town Crier
In his retirement, Harold Stenfort enjoys woodworking and gifting his creations to those he appreciates.

Harold Stenfort walked into the Town Crier’s office – a second-floor workspace shared by advertising, circulation, editorial and production teams shouting information over cubicle walls and spreading laughter above the music playing through the floorboards from Morsey’s Farmhouse below – and placed an oven-rack puller at the reception desk.

Stenfort didn’t have any questions or need help investigating an old issue of the paper; he simply wanted to show his appreciation to the paper’s staff in the best way he knows how: with a handmade gift from his years of woodworking.

Volunteer Profile: School field trips turn into volunteer gig at Hidden Villa

Nicole Carbone/Special to the Town Crier
Kelly Matiasevich, pictured in the organic Education Garden at Hidden Villa, holds a carrot she just pulled out of the soil.


One morning a week, former lawyer and teacher’s aide Kelly Matiasevich, 48, drops off her daughter at school, then heads directly to Hidden Villa, where she volunteers as a Farm Tour Guide for schoolchildren at the educational, organic farm and nature area in Los Altos Hills.

Aurora chorus reunites with French choir

Emmanuelle Izquierdo directs the Chorale Assou-Lézert of Albi, France, set to perform in Portola Valley Sunday.

Just weeks after 9/11, the Aurora Singers community chorus hosted the Chorale Assou-Lézert from Palo Alto’s sister city in Albi, France. In addition to performing, the French group brought friendship, support and hope in dark times. It also donated its share of the concert proceeds to the American Red Cross, aiding the victims and rescuers of the tragedy in New York City.

Eighteen years and five exchanges later – hosted in singers’ homes in France and Silicon Valley, including Los Altos – the bonds between members have deepened beyond music.

Locally based Carbon Bootcamp promotes reduction strategies

Increase your energy fitness. Build your bicycling muscle. Eat your veggies. These are just a few ways you can reduce your carbon footprint through the new Carbon Bootcamp program.

GreenTown Los Altos is partnering with Carbon Bootcamp to sponsor the first 300 residents who sign up for the program. Participants will receive gear, support and real-time encouragement at no cost.

Community Services Agency kicks off 'Los Altos Can' campaign

Community Services Agency launched a canned-food drive for the summer, a time of year when donations are historically low. The social media campaign, dubbed “Los Altos Can,” challenges residents to bring a can of healthy food to a local food pantry.

Through Aug. 2, residents are urged to bring donations to a food pantry – either CSA or another – and post a photograph or video of themselves doing so on social media, tagging the post with #CanChallenge, #LosAltosCan and #CSAcares.

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