Last updateWed, 20 Sep 2017 9am

Days of old Los Altos filled with sights and sounds of trains: Santa Clara Valley Lives

Photo Courtesy of California State Railroad Museum
The railroad station at Loyola Corners is gone now, but it was located near the spot where today Tom’s Depot stands. The above photo, circa 1956, was uncovered by local resident Pat Marriott.


Growing up in the Santa Clara Valley, it was impossible to get through a single day without hearing the familiar whistle of a railroad train.

NASA speaker reveals space agency's next challenges to Los Altos Rotarians

Steve Pomeroy/Rotary Club of Los Altos
Michael Dudley addresses the Rotary Club of Los Altos.

Michael Dudley said that for all of its space exploration, NASA’s goals are fairly down to earth and include “finding ways to make the Earth a better place” through an understanding of the climate and environment.

Dudley, who addressed the Rotary Club of Los Altos at its Aug. 24 meeting, has served as director of the NASA Aeronautics Research Institute since its establishment in 2012. He said NASA continues to explore the universe both remotely and by “going where no one has gone before.”

Volunteers dig away at Los Altos' trash problem

Megan Winslow/Town Crier
Los Altos resident Oliver Breitbart, 14, composts a post- farmers’ market meal as GreenTown Los Altos volunteers Barbara O’Reilly and Linda Ziff ask him about the process.

The dark side of outdoor eating in Los Altos gathers in black garbage bags hefted away by Mission Trail Waste Systems. Despite city rules requiring vendors to use compostable food containers, those dishes and their contents end up in downtown trash bins on an irksome scale.

This summer Los Altos residents Barbara O’Reilly and Linda Ziff made it their mission to disrupt those dustbins.

Los Altos native Spangler returns home as 'An American in Paris'

Matthew Murphy/Special to The Town Crier
Nick Spangler, center, is enjoying success on the stage, starring in a production of “An American in Paris.”

After more than a decade in New York City, Los Altos native Nick Spangler returns to the Bay Area next week with the touring production of “An American in Paris.”

The Mountain View High School graduate plays a prominent role in the musical, scheduled to run Tuesday through Oct. 8 at the Orpheum Theatre in San Francisco.

Los Altos residents visit Japan for Friendship Force exchange

Courtesy of Dee Gustavson
Los Altos residents Dee and Dave Gustavson sample beer with their home-host Kishiko Otaki, center, of Sapporo, Japan, at the Sapporo Beer Museum.

Los Altos residents Dave and Dee Gustavson, members of the San Francisco Bay Area Friendship Force Club, recently visited the home of Kishiko Otaki of Sapporo, Japan, whom they hosted in Los Altos last October.

The Gustavsons were among 21 Bay Area members the Sapporo Friendship Force Club hosted in June. On the visit, the Bay Area contingent wore kimonos, sampled Japanese specialties, rode the bullet train and visited museums and flower shows. Sapporo club members also introduced their visitors to cultural activities, including origami, ikebana, calligraphy and a Japanese tea ceremony.

Los Altos High grads share big ideas at TEDxFargo event


Two Los Altos High School alumni recently participated in the eighth annual TEDxFargo event – one as a musician and the other as a speaker.

Software engineer Kevin Wang, Class of 1998, discussed the importance of computer science education and presented Technology Education and Literacy for Schools (TEALS), a program he founded in 2009. Musician James Lanman, who graduated in 2002, debuted “Ride or Die,” a song he completed only four days prior to the July 27 event in North Dakota.

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