End of an era for iconic ice cream cone
My parents, Henry and Sue Nesmith, have owned Los Altos Hardware for almost 40 years. Before the hardware store took ownership of the property in 1983, the building was home to the famous Clint’s Ice Cream shop, followed by a wonderful French restaurant. The building is known for its iconic ice cream cone that sat on the roof marking the spot of Clint’s Ice Cream Store.
In the midst of obtaining a new roof, Los Altos Hardware realized the historic ice cream cone had to be removed. Every rainy winter the cone would leak severely and merchandise would be ruined because of water damage. For years, we tried to patch the leaks from the inside, but they could never be fixed. When we started to investigate with the roofing company, we realized the foundation was made of narrow wooden beams that were decaying and full of termite damage. Unfortunately, the memorable ice cream cone had to be removed. It was a miracle it never fell over!
We understand the sentimental value of the ice cream cone and are terribly sad to see it go. Through the years we have loved hearing the stories of our customers’ experiences at Clint’s and hope those stories never stop! We hope to one day re-create a more stable structure to represent Clint’s ice cream cone.
Please feel free to contact us with any questions or comments you may have. Los Altos Hardware loves being a part of this wonderful community and we thank you for your continued support!
Los Altos Hardware
LAH: All benefits, no assistance
Following is an open letter to Los Altos Hills Mayor Michelle Wu.
After reading your June 10 letter to the editor (“LAH mayor says town backs small businesses”) – your rebuttal to the negative response about the choice the town of Los Altos Hills made to provide just a molecule of funding assistance for the Los Altos Small Business Relief Fund (Los Altos Hills funded one business grant) – I was very unhappy to learn that Los Altos Hills seems to want all of the benefits from a close-in and charming downtown with free parking, but chooses not to assist in any meaningful way during an emergency shutdown of the business community.
The tax-base argument is groundless. Santa Clara County reported a very high rate of recent residential property tax payments, while retail businesses have been prevented from generating revenue, which in turn generates sales-tax revenue. These businesses have been forced to shut down and limit shopping for the sole purpose of keeping everyone in our community healthy.
It is a very unbalanced burden the retailers, service providers and restaurants are forced to endure. Their landlords and mortgage holders are not required by the same COVID-19 orders to stop collecting monthly rents and mortgages. The reason the fund was created was to help, in a small way, balance the inequitable financial burden that continues. The city of Los Altos understands how critical it is to help share the burden.
Due to lack of funding, 20 small businesses that qualify for a Small Business Relief grant will not be provided that assistance. Perhaps Los Altos Hills would prefer to pay on a “per trip” basis: a toll gate at each road artery leading into downtown Los Altos from the Hills.
President, Sherry Scott
LA council, mayor: ‘We can do better’
I find Los Altos City Councilwoman Jeannie Bruins’ off-handed comment to Councilwoman Neysa Fligor extremely offensive. Her apology is hollow. She owes an apology to the community as well for her insulting remark. Racist language hurts all who hear it, regardless of their background. Mayor Jan Pepper’s defense of Bruins’ remark is equally concerning. She owes an apology to the community as well.
Their behavior is emblematic of a lack of awareness of council members as to the systemic racism present in American society and the implicit cultural bias that permeates our lexicon.
Apologize to the citizens of Los Altos. Educate yourselves. Share your plan to work with the Los Altos Police Department on reducing racially motivated stops and inviting community oversight.
We can do better. We demand better from our leadership.
Chamber programs making a difference
The leadership provided by the Los Altos Chamber of Commerce has been instrumental to our community during this historic time. The Chamber has worked with several local organizations to create the following new programs.
• The Los Altos Small Business Relief Fund. The fund provides $5,000 grants to eligible storefront businesses across all Los Altos business districts.
• What’s Open Los Altos. The project provides one online location to order, purchase and donate to support Los Altos businesses through the COVID-19 crisis.
• The Los Altos Gift Card. The initiative supports online gift card sales to support our local merchants and restaurants.
• Open Streets Los Altos. The program works with both retail and restaurant owners to build consensus and find a temporary solution that supports our entire community. Residents have expanded opportunities to shop and dine within social-distancing protocols through the open streets of downtown Los Altos Thursday through Sunday.
• Facebook groups and social media campaigns. Such efforts engage residents through social media to share photos of their favorite takeout and recent retail purchases.
We ask you to show your support of our efforts by donating to the Chamber – losaltoschamber.org.
President, Los Altos
Chamber of Commerce