The holiday season is in full swing, and we stand ready to chime in on recent local news.

Thumbs-up: To Neysa Fligor, who completed her one-year stint as Los Altos mayor Tuesday. Fligor led 2021 council meetings with a courteous but assertive manner. She was ubiquitous – she seemed to be hosting or attending virtually every community event on the calendar. Touting bold leadership, she initiated discussions on a new downtown theater and co-organized a joint Los Altos and Los Altos Hills Veterans Day event that may become an annual tradition. Perhaps most impactful was her resolution co-authored with Councilmember Jonathan Weinberg in late May that completely defused a controversy with Councilmember Lynette Lee Eng and a local Black activist that had consumed countless hours of council meeting time and showed no signs of abating. We thank Fligor for her leadership.

Thumbs-up: To the all-volunteer Los Altos Festival of Lights Association for its hard work in putting on the first downtown parade in two years. Organizers didn’t miss a beat, and were undeterred by narrower streets, as the numerous floats, marching bands and costumed characters moved along with nary a hitch.

Thumbs-up: To Weinberg, whose reconsideration of his initial vote on the David and Lucile Packard Foundation’s parking lot expansion resulted in an improved landscape plan, approved by the council last week, with greater tree preservation. Kudos also to Packard Foundation leaders, who, instead of fighting any changes, offered a significantly greener plan in keeping with their reputation for environmental stewardship.

Thumbs-up: To Los Altos City Council majority efforts in support of downtown vitality – namely, last week’s approval of a new parklet plan for local restaurants and a memorandum of understanding to promote a downtown theater. The new parklet plan allows popular outdoor dining arrangements to continue in a post-pandemic era. The theater agreement to reserve parking plaza space, though nonbinding, at least provides motivation for supporters to pursue a feasibility study and funding.

Thumbs-up: To our continuing contributors to the Town Crier Holiday Fund. The campaign, in its 21st year, provides funding for 16 local nonprofit organizations. We encourage everyone to donate to the fund. For more information, visit