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Battle over composting resumes Page 3

page 16

Vote online for Best Of Palo Alto 2012

Spectrum 14

Title Pages 22

Eating Out 28

Movies 30

NArts Russian Jewish composers inuence U.S. music

Page 24

NSports Stanford swimmer outdistances disappointment Page 32 NHome Local Realtors grab top national rankings

Page 40

Pa lo Alto

Chili COOK OFF & Summer Festival

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31st Annual

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Upfront

Local news, information and analysis

Palo Alto hopes to settle compost dilemma by 2014 City’s proposed action plan includes series of analyses, request for proposals for compost technologies by Gennady Sheyner he future of Palo Alto’s composting services probably won’t be settled until at least early 2014 as the city prepares to perform a series of complex studies and survey its options for a possible waste-to-energy plant in the Baylands.

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The city this week unveiled an action plan outlining the next steps in one of its most complex and polarizing dilemmas. The issue emerged as a hot topic because of the recent closure of the landfill, which included the city’s composting operation. The Baylands landfill received

its final load of yard trimmings on March 31, according to a new report from Charles Muir, an environmental specialist in the Public Works Department. The landfill’s closure means the city will now have to export its yard trimmings to Gilroy. That prospect has galvanized the city’s green community, with many residents urging the City Council to keep composting local. Last year, a large coalition of environmentalists succeeded

in passing Measure E, an initiative that undedicated 10 acres of Byxbee Park in the Baylands and made them available for an anaerobic digester, a plant that would process local food waste and yard trimmings and convert them into electricity. The passage of Measure E answered the crucial question of where the new composting operation could be located. But, as Muir’s report makes clear, it is prompting many other questions about the costs

and impacts of a proposed plant. The staff’s action plan includes a long list of complex and expensive homework assignments that the city would have to complete before the council could make the big decision in early 2014 on whether to proceed with the plant. Those assignments include environmental and financial analyses, a request for proposals from technol(continued on page 8)

EDUCATION

School chief’s contract extended Palo Alto school board extends superintendent’s contract through June 2016 by Chris Kenrick

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Veronica Weber

TV guides TV cameraman Wyatt Thayer checks the monitor as show hosts Danielle Gee and Gaia Aspitz, far right, interview assistant instructor Wes Rapaport, on couch, at the Midpeninsula Community Media Center in Palo Alto on Wednesday. At far left, camera operator Sophie Pelosi and floor director Shaan Signh also took part in the weeklong summer camp for students aged 10 to 14.

EDUCATION

Foothill College cuts radio, work programs Budget constraints reduce students’ options by Bryce Druzin

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oothill College will discontinue several programs this fall quarter due to $2.3 million in budget cuts that will take effect July 1. Programs on the chopping block at the Los Altos Hills community college include Chinese, creative writing, radio and cooperative work experience.

“We’ve really been in cut mode for three years,� Foothill President Judy Miner said. Foothill has generated less funding based on enrollment, called apportionment, for the last two years. Miner said the decline is mostly due to a state reduction in the number of times students are allowed to repeat courses and changes to how

colleges can count attendance for unscheduled hours outside of the classroom, such as time spent in a tutorial center. Miner said the college will recover some apportionment next year when it offers tutorial-center classes but expressed frustration at state bureaucracy. “Had we got approval (for the classes) back in the fall, we would have mitigated our (apportionment) loss more than we did,� she said. This year Foothill also corrected how it counted hours for cooperative work experience, a program in which students complete assignments based on experiences at their jobs. The adjustment resulted in a nearly $1.5 million drop in funding. “Like many other places, we

were turning in actual hours that students would be spending on a job,� Miner said. She said the incorrect counting was due to a misinterpretation of the state attendance accounting manual. Using the correct method, the school counted 68 full-time equivalent students for this year compared with 376 and 410 for the two previous years. The changed method resulted in a drop of apportionment from roughly $1.8 million in 201011 to $340,000 in 2011-12. “This is just a program that’s not going to be effective for what we can afford,� said John Mummert, vice president of workforce development, explaining the decision to (continued on page 8)

espite recent strains over communication, Superintendent Kevin Skelly Tuesday, June 26, won a one-year contract extension through June 2016 with enthusiastic praise from Palo Alto school board members. Skelly, who was hired by the district in 2007, will not get a pay raise. With an annual salary of $287,163, he is the 11th highest paid school chief in the state, coming behind heads of the San Francisco, Los Angeles and Fresno districts as well as the Cupertino Union School District, Fremont Union High School District, the Santa Clara County Office of Education and several southern California districts. He previously worked for the southern California district of Poway, where he had been associate superintendent for learning-support services. Following a closed-door evaluation of Skelly last week, which board President Camille Townsend described as “very healthy and very productive,� school board members Tuesday voted unanimously for the contract extension, with hearty praise. “Thank you for the good work,� Townsend said. “We’re very aware of the challenges and joys of the job, and its very public nature. Your style reflects a genuine enjoyment of students of all grades, and we appreciate the time you spend on all the campuses, your accessibility, good (continued on page 11)

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Upfront

PUBLISHER William S. Johnson EDITORIAL Jocelyn Dong, Editor Carol Blitzer, Associate Editor Keith Peters, Sports Editor Tyler Hanley, Express™ and Online Editor Rebecca Wallace, Arts & Entertainment Editor Rick Eymer, Assistant Sports Editor Tom Gibboney, Spectrum Editor Sue Dremann, Chris Kenrick, Gennady Sheyner, Staff Writers Eric Van Susteren, Editorial Assistant, Internship Coordinator Veronica Weber, Staff Photographer Dale F. Bentson, Colin Becht, Peter Canavese, Kit Davey, Iris Harrell, Sheila Himmel, Chad Jones, Karla Kane, Kevin Kirby, Jack McKinnon, Jeanie K. Smith, Susan Tavernetti, Contributors Helen Carefoot, Junesung Lee, Maytal Mark, Bryce Druzin, Lauren-Marie Sliter, Dean McArdle Editorial Interns

CITY OF PALO ALTO NOTICE OF PUBLIC HEARING NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN, pursuant to Government Code Sections 66016 and 66018, that the City Council of the City of Palo Alto will conduct a Public Hearing at a Meeting on July 23, 2012, at 6:00 p.m., or as soon thereafter as possible, in the Council Chambers, City Hall, 250 Hamilton Avenue, Palo Alto, California, to consider changes to the Fiscal Year 2013 Municipal Fee Schedule concerning Animal Services, including new fees, and increases to existing fees. Copies of the fee schedule setting forth any proposed new fees, and increases to existing fees are available on the City’s website and in the Administrative Services Department, 4th Floor, City Hall, 250 Hamilton Avenue, Palo Alto, California. There is a $3.00 per copy charge for this publication. DONNA J. GRIDER, MMC City Clerk

DESIGN Shannon Corey, Design Director Linda Atilano, Diane Haas, Scott Peterson, Paul Llewellyn, Senior Designers Lili Cao, Designer PRODUCTION Jennifer Lindberg, Production Manager Dorothy Hassett, Samantha Mejia, Blanca Yoc, Sales & Production Coordinators ADVERTISING Tom Zahiralis, Vice President Sales & Advertising Adam Carter, Elaine Clark, Janice Hoogner, Brent Triantos, Display Advertising Sales Neal Fine, Carolyn Oliver, Rosemary Lewkowitz, Real Estate Advertising Sales David Cirner, Irene Schwartz, Inside Advertising Sales Diane Martin, Real Estate Advertising Asst. Alicia Santillan, Classified Administrative Asst. Wendy Suzuki, Advertising Sales Intern EXPRESS, ONLINE AND VIDEO SERVICES Rachel Palmer, Online Operations Coordinator Rachel Hatch, Multimedia Product Manager BUSINESS Susie Ochoa, Payroll & Benefits Elena Dineva, Mary McDonald, Claire McGibeny, Cathy Stringari, Business Associates

Ready to Reinvent Your Life? Help us create a new “old fashioned� cohousing neighborhood of energy-efficient condos just blocks from lively downtown MV. Enjoy sociability and activities with your neighbors while living in your own private condominium. Our shared common facilities include a crafts room, exercise room, media room, workshop, roof deck and gardens. We’re 14 households strong and are looking for 5 more to join us. Homes still available range from 1750 SF (3 bedrooms) to 2050 SF (4 bedrooms). Construction starts this summer, with occupancy by late 2013. Endorsed by the Greenbelt Alliance. To find out more or to make reservations for our next social on July 22nd:

650-479-MVCC (479-6822) www.MountainViewCohousing.org

ADMINISTRATION Janice Covolo, Doris Taylor, Receptionists Ruben Espinoza, Courier EMBARCADERO MEDIA William S. Johnson, President Michael I. Naar, Vice President & CFO Tom Zahiralis, Vice President Sales & Advertising Frank A. Bravo, Director, Information Technology & Webmaster Connie Jo Cotton, Major Accounts Sales Manager Bob Lampkin, Director, Circulation & Mailing Services Alicia Santillan, Circulation Assistant Chris Planessi, Chip Poedjosoedarmo, Computer System Associates The Palo Alto Weekly (ISSN 0199-1159) is published every Friday by Embarcadero Media, 450 Cambridge Ave., Palo Alto, CA 94306, (650) 326-8210. Periodicals postage paid at Palo Alto, CA and additional mailing offices. Adjudicated a newspaper of general circulation for Santa Clara County. The Palo Alto Weekly is delivered free to homes in Palo Alto, Menlo Park, Atherton, Portola Valley, East Palo Alto, to faculty and staff households on the Stanford campus and to portions of Los Altos Hills. If you are not currently receiving the paper, you may request free delivery by calling 326-8210. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Palo Alto Weekly, P.O. Box 1610, Palo Alto, CA 94302. Copyright Š2012 by Embarcadero Media. All rights reserved. Reproduction without permission is strictly prohibited. The Palo Alto Weekly is available on the Internet via Palo Alto Online at: www.PaloAltoOnline.com Our email addresses are: editor@paweekly.com, letters@paweekly.com, digitalads@paweekly.com. Missed delivery or start/stop your paper? Call 650 326-8210, or email circulation@paweekly. com. You may also subscribe online at www.PaloAltoOnline.com. Subscriptions are $60/yr.

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QUOTE OF THE WEEK

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450 CAMBRIDGE AVE, PALO ALTO, CA 94306 (650) 326-8210

It doesn’t mean that I’m in love with this project. —Patrick Burt, Palo Alto City Councilman, after complimenting changes made to the 195 Page Mill Road development, which the council approved Monday. See story on page 5.

Around Town THE RUMOR MILL ... After Gov. Jerry Brown signed the state budget on Wednesday, June 27, much of the buzz in Sacramento swirled around what wasn’t in the document. This includes high-speed rail, a project that is expected to be the focus on a budget-trailer bill that will be released in the next week or two. The suspense around this trailer bill has created a flood of rumormongering around the Capitol, with both advocates and opponents of the controversial project ramping up their efforts to influence its immediate future, Palo Alto’s lobbyist John Garamendi told the City Council’s Rail Committee Thursday morning. “We’ve got an absolute million pieces moving as we try to figure out what’s real and what’s not real,� Garamendi said. “What is real is that there is a tremendous amount of concern around Sacramento.� The uncertainty, he said, has prompted labor unions and other proponents of the voterapproved project to step up their lobbying efforts, he said. “It’s literally packed in the hallways,� Garamendi said. “Not just labor but engineering firms are worried that this might be slipping away.� One of the major questions revolves around a controversial proposal by Brown to give high-speed rail exemptions from the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA). After pressure from environmental groups, Brown backed away from this proposal, Garamendi said. But by the end of the week, Brown’s office had indicated that the proposal to give the project exemptions from environmental law is still on the table. “We thought we won that by Thursday,� Garamendi said. “By Friday, the governor said we aren’t quite done with that discussion. A lot of people on the environmental side quickly realized that this is very much in play.� Palo Alto, which officially opposes high-speed rail, has consistently voiced concerns about exempting the $68 billion project from CEQA. Earlier this month, the city sent a letter to state Sen. Joe Simitian

urging him to vote against any further appropriations for highspeed rail. But the letter noted that if the Legislature were to move forward with the project, the appropriation language must guarantee that there will be “no modifications of any kind� to the environmentalreview process. ONE BRIDGE LED TO ANOTHER ... A proposal to rebuild the small and quaint Newell Road bridge between Palo Alto and East Palo Alto was greeted with enthusiasm last year by officials from the two cities. Many view the new bridge as an important component in a regional plan to improve flood control around the volatile San Francisquito Creek. But the project has also prompted some residents around Crescent Park to ask, “What about us?� The Pope-Chaucer Street bridge, which connects their neighborhood to Menlo Park, has been a particularly poor bulwark against flood water. This week, City Manager James Keene announced that the Chaucer Street bridge is next on the list for a possible replacement. The Santa Clara Valley Water District is soliciting proposals for consultants to work on the project, he said, and the cities of Palo Alto and Menlo Park will work with the regional agency, San Francisquito Creek Joint Powers Authority (of which both cities are members) on the selection process. Design work is slated to begin in November, Keene said. EXPLOSIONS, EXPLOSIONS ... July 4th revelers in Palo Alto should be cautioned against violating city fireworks ordinances. About 20 volunteers who are part of the city’s Emergency Services Volunteers will be doing a safety watch on Wednesday to deter criminal activity, said Kenneth Dueker, Palo Alto’s director of emergency services. The group will be deployed throughout the city with walkie-talkies and will focus on fire prevention and shenanigans, he said. N

Upfront PUBLIC SAFETY

City starts new volunteer emergency medical unit Disaster program is looking for retired doctors and nurses to help in emergencies by Sue Dremann alo Alto’s citywide disaster program is looking for retired doctors and nurses to join a new emergency medical unit. Organizing the unit started in late May as part of a restructured Emergency Services Volunteers program outlined in February by Kenneth Dueker, city director of emergency services. He said the medical unit is crucial to effective disaster response. Stanford University Medical Center officials were clear during meetings that they wanted the city to care for lesser injuries in a disaster. It could be hours or days before Palo Alto residents receive

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transportation for injuries after a disaster, he added. With most fire, police and emergency personnel residing outside of the city, the few on-duty police (about 10) and firefighters (about 29) would be overwhelmed in a disaster. The specially trained volunteers will fill a gap between care at the hospital emergency room and ground-level emergency response from the volunteer Community Emergency Response Team (CERT), he said. The new medical unit will have two levels: retired nurses and doctors for pre-hospital care and treatment in triage centers; and neighborhood volunteers for treating patients who don’t require a trip to the emergency room.

Lesser-trained persons can act as scribes or in other support roles. The training is more akin to wilderness medicine, Dueker said. Registered nurse Bonnie Berg, who is co-leading the medical unit, emphasized the importance of developing a volunteer emergency medical team. “We will only have one another to depend on in case of a significant emergency. “Each member of the team, from the medical care people to the scribes, runners and radio operators, is an important contributor in caring for people in need. I see the unit as an intelligent way to prepare for a disaster and an effective way to provide medical care for the people of our com-

munity in an emergency,� she said. Even non-medical professionals can be trained in important skills, such as psychology training. Learning to calm people “is really important because a lot of people will be freaking out� during a disaster, she said. “I was with a child as he was dying because a car rolled over on him. I couldn’t do much for him as a nurse, but I could be there as his support person,� she recalled Wednesday afternoon. Nurses and doctors who don’t want to actively participate in the unit can still be placed on a resource roster, Dueker said. They would be called upon only if needed for a disaster. Residents without medi-

cal backgrounds can receive basic instruction in the 20-hour CERT program and additional instruction in wilderness medicine and other support services, he said. Dueker put the medical unit’s importance in basic terms: The one thing he doesn’t want to tell a person with a dangling broken arm is, “Sorry, you’ll just have to wait.� More information about the medical unit, radio communications, shelter and human services or public works/storm response units can be found at paneighborhoods.org or by emailing epvolunteer@paneighborhoods.org. N Staff Writer Sue Dremann can be emailed at sdremann@ paweekly.com.

LAND USE

Harold Hohbach’s ‘Park Plaza’ project wins approval by Gennady Sheyner fter years of litigation, apThough the project consists of peals, revisions and public 102,225 square feet of development, hearings, developer Harold most of the discussion Monday foHohbach finally claimed on Mon- cused on the 2,400 square feet of reday, June 25, the prize that has long tail the project would include. Vice eluded him — Palo Alto’s permis- Mayor Greg Scharff and Councilman sion to build a three-story develop- Pat Burt both called for the applicant ment on Page Mill Road. to subsidize a coffee shop or another The mixed-use development, type of food-and-beverage establishwhich the City Council approved ment. Hohbach agreed, though the 8-0 Monday night (Gail Price was team was already willing to commit absent), will feature 82 apartments, to subsidizing a 1,200-square-foot research-and-development space and coffee shop or similar business. a small cafĂŠ on the ground floor. It Not everyone agreed the retail would stand at 195 Page Mill, next component should necessarily be to the Caltrain corridor and a short a coffee shop. Councilman Larry walk from the California Avenue Klein advocated letting the market Business District. dictate the nature of the business. The council approved the “Park “I’m not sure the council should Plazaâ€? development three weeks be saying that this has to be a foodafter members criticized it for be- and-beverage place,â€? Klein said. ing too massive and looking too “We’re sort of dictating what the much like a “fortress.â€? At the June market may want. There may be 4 meeting, council members urged other things that might be more useHohbach’s team to break up the ful in that particular area.â€? buildings, add open space and make After much debate, the council the development more attractive to agreed to give the developer some pedestrians. Planning Director Cur- latitude and required him to furtis Williams said that staff believes nish either a 1,200-square-foot that since the last meeting “there has food-and-beverage operation or a been substantial modification to the 2,400-square-foot retail operation design,â€? as per council direction. of a different sort. If Hohbach were On Monday night, the council to choose the latter option, the esagreed the applicant did what was tablishment could not be a financial, asked. The “fortressâ€? has been legal, medical or accounting busibroken up into three separate ele- ness under a condition of the counments with access for pedestrians cil’s approval. to a landscaped interior courtyard. The council also directed staff to Hohbach had agreed to reduce the explore the possibility of installing number of apartments from 84 to 82 ventilation and testing systems in and reduced the commercial space the residential areas of the develon the ground floor from 50,467 opment to address concerns about square feet to 47,917 square feet. contaminated groundwater. If staff

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Courtesy Hoover Associates

Palo Alto City Council gives controversial Page Mill Road development the green light

The mixed-use development at 195 Page Mill Road will feature 82 apartments, research-and-development space and a small cafĂŠ on the ground floor. were to determine that these systems would be useful and feasible, their installation would become another condition of approval. Though the project ultimately earned the green light with no dissent, some council members acknowledged they were less than thrilled with the proposed development, even with the recent changes. Councilwoman Karen Holman said the design, even after revisions, doesn’t add to the “built environment in a positive way.â€? Burt acknowledged that Hohbach’s team responded to the council’s direction. But he quickly hedged his enthusiasm for the development. “It doesn’t mean that I’m in love with this project,â€? Burt said. But the council was largely supportive of Hohbach’s proposal to add a dense development to an area so close to the Caltrain corridor. The city has long eyed the California Avenue neighborhood as an ideal place for mixed-use projects because of the existence of a nearby Caltrain station.

Mayor Yiaway Yeh and Councilman Greg Schmid both cited the project’s location as a major reason why the project should be supported. “I like very much the notion of the housing going in near the train station, and I think it is true that the neighborhood is growing and changing and this could be the important element of a revitalized and expanding neighborhood,� Schmid said. Yeh called the new development an “important addition� to the neighborhood and noted that mixeduse development has been the city’s “broader intention for the California Avenue area.� “The lengthy process in the end has led to a better project,� Yeh said. The council’s approval ends a decade-long saga for Hohbach and his application team. After going through the city’s extensive application process, the developer succeeded in gaining the council’s support in 2006 but was forced to return to the drawing board after a lawsuit

from residents Bob Moss and Tom Jordan. Moss and Jordan claimed that Hohbach did not adequately analyze the environmental impacts of vapors emitted from a contaminated groundwater plume at the site. Hohbach reapplied but met heavy resistance last year from the council, which encouraged him to seek a different zoning designation, one that would emphasize the development’s location near the Caltrain tracks but would require a less massive building. Hohbach declined to seek a zone change, which would have required a fresh set of hearings, and persisted with a project under the existing “general manufacture� zoning. On Monday, Hohbach said he was “very happy� with the council’s decision. “I think this will be a great addition to the area,� Hohbach told the Weekly. N Staff Writer Gennady Sheyner can be emailed at gsheyner@ paweekly.com.

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Upfront PALO ALTO ONLINE

BLOG: Palo Alto expat in London reports on Olympics David Vinokur provides hometown perspective in dispatches for Palo Alto Online As the 2012 Summer Olympic Games approach, Palo Alto High School graduate David Vinokur will be blogging about London, his adopted home and the location of the Olympics. Below is an excerpt from his first entry. His full blog is posted on PaloAltoOnline.com. ello from the United Kingdom. -Y NAME IS $AVID 6INOKUR a Palo Alto native now based in London. Last year I was miraculously selected in the public lottery to purchase tickets to attend the Opening Ceremony of the London 2012 Olympic Games. I subsequently accepted an invitation from the Palo Alto Weekly to provide my beloved hometown with a “local� angle on the opening extravaganza, as well as life in Blighty. In the lead up to the opening Ceremony next month, I will share my personal take on Britain, including peculiarities and highlights of life in my adoptive Roman-founded mega city formerly known as Londinium. I will touch on food, radio and television, theatre and music, language, sports and maybe even some politics

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and history. But first, I’d like to train your gaze on my roots in Palo Alto and how I got from “Tall Tree� to “The Smoke.� Born, raised and educated in Palo Alto, I attended Addison, Jordan GO $OLPHINS AND 0ALY 'ROWING up, in addition to the schooling, the parks and recreation were (and REMAIN FANTASTIC ESPECIALLY THE Baylands Preserve, Foothills Park and Rinconada Park and pool. I played in AYSO (the American Youth Soccer Organisation, for those not FAMILIAR FROM fifth to 12th grade and also played clarinet and David Vinokur bassoon in Jordan and Paly ensembles various. ... For the past six years I have lived with my U.K. family in the largely residential Thames-bound south London Borough of Wands-

worth, home to such luminaries as super chef Gordon Ramsey, Oscarwinning actor Colin Firth and the Tooting Bec Lido. The Tooting Lido is actually a fully functioning, 106-year-old open-air swimming pool, the largest in the U.K. and purportedly the second largest in Europe. Situated in the 212-acre Tooting Commons parklands, the Lido opened three months after the Great Quake of 1906 as the “Tooting Bathing Lake.� Its one-million-gallon pool provided not only athletic but also bathing facilities for the many local residents who did not have this at home. In fact, many toilets then were located out back — even the door to our garden shed was originally from an old “outside loo.� Suffice it to say this pool and park are a wonderful way to stay connected to my swimming and hiking roots. ... An apt and funny saying about the U.K. is: it’s like Europe, but in English. And at its heart is London and environs, a massive melting pot of 13 million souls from across the 54 British Commonwealth member

COMMUNITY

Only one Palo Alto church offers parking to car campers City, businesses don’t want to provide space to people who live in their cars, either by Sue Dremann

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ut of 42 Palo Alto churches, only one congregation is offering its parking lot so that people who live in their cars can get off the streets. City officials are likewise not offering public land as a place for vehicle dwellers to park overnight, Curtis Williams, director of planning and community environment, told about 40 people at a community meeting Tuesday night, June 26. He said the city had hoped to start a pilot program with at least three churches, but out of seven that responded, only one offered. About three cars would be allowed to stay in a church or business parking lot, but restroom facilities would also be needed, he said. First Presbyterian Church on Cowper Street was the only church that agreed to host the campers. But Rus Kosits, a pastoral resident, said the number and tenor of negative emails he received took him aback. “I was shocked at the level of vitriol and trumped-up concerns,� he said. He was concerned that other churches might not want to participate out of fear of similar reactions. Eileen Altman, pastor at the First Congregational Church of

Palo Alto on Louis Road, said her church said “no� to the pilot but would be interested in participating in a permanent program. Providing a portable toilet for the pilot program could be a problem. Kosits chided the churches for their poor or tentative responses.

‘We are waiting with our “Yes, what’s next?� rather than a “No, I’m not sure.’� —Rus Kosits, pastoral resident, First Presbyterian Church The parking-lot plan would allow persons to sleep overnight in cars, campers or trailers in a church parking lot with the following provisions: s 7RITTEN PERMISSION OF THE owner. s.OMORETHANTHREEVEHICLESAT any one time. s%ACHVEHICLEWOULDBEPARKED no closer than 20 feet from residential property. s 4HE VEHICLES MUST HAVE VALID licenses and registration. s 4HE PROPERTY OWNER HAS SOLE

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control over the parking and must furnish vehicle owners with guidelines. s"ATHROOMSMUSTBEMADEAVAILable. s0ARKINGMUSTBEFREE s 4HE $OWNTOWN 3TREETS 4EAM would provide limited security. Williams said the city also reached out to businesses through the Palo Alto Chamber of ComMERCEANDTHE$OWNTOWN"USINESS )MPROVEMENT$ISTRICTBUTRECEIVED no responses. The City Council’s Policy and Services Committee also did not want city properties involved. There could be costs associated with the plan, and the committee did not want to add new expenses with current budget constraints, he said. City staff plan to make a recommendation to the Policy and Services Committee regarding the issue July 10, he said. In addition to the parking-lot concept, Williams presented three other options: restrictions on overnight parking, such as a ban from 2 to 5 a.m.; a previously proposed ordinance prohibiting vehicle habitation on public streets or at public sites; or no change in regulations but adding social-services outreach.

VIDEO: Palo Alto Concours d’Elegance Some 300 vintage and collectible cars were on exhibit at the Palo Alto Concours d’Elegance auto show Sunday, June 24 at Stanford. The show included a display by the Viper Club of America, the million dollar MOPAR muscle exhibit, and other rare cars and was presented by the Palo Alto Host Lions Club. Watch the video by Sierra Duren on www.PaloAltoOnline.com.

nations, as well as the European Union and pretty much everywhere you can imagine. This amazing mix of cultures generates some fascinating cross-pollination of peoples and languages. Familiar language differences with the U.S. are truck/lorry, elevator/lift and the aforementioned toilet/loo. This reminds me of the classic sentiment that the U.S. and U.K. are two countries separated by a common language. The issue of people living in their cars came to a head after one man parked several vans in the College Terrace neighborhood long term. Irritation over that situation led others to voice complaints of public urination and other problems caused by people living in their cars. But many car campers said the problems are created by only a handful of troublemakers. In response, the city last year proposed a ban on living in vehicles. Palo Alto is the only local city without such an ordinance, AssisTANT#ITY!TTORNEY$ONALD,ARKIN has said. People who live in their cars and advocates for the homeless quickly criticized the proposed ordinance and have sought alternate measures, including the parking-lot plan and working with police to identify troublemakers. 4HE$OWNTOWN3TREETS4EAM A Palo Alto nonprofit organization that employs formerly homeless people, has offered to supply the outreach for either the parking-lot program or as part of the socialservices alternative. #HRIS2ICHARDSONOFTHE$OWNtown Streets Team said parkinglot programs in Eugene, Ore., and Ventura, Calif., have been effective. Forty-two percent of people who lived in their cars entered transitional or permanent housing in Ventura. Former deputy district attorney Aram James said an ordinance that would fine car campers would cause greater costs than just to the homeless. Enforcement is costly to the district attorney’s office and the $EPARTMENTOF#ORRECTIONS Attorney Joy Ogawa recommended Palo Alto adopt a no-

So dear reader, equipped with my Palo Alto perspective, over the coming weeks I will attempt to shed light on my experiences both at the Opening Ceremony and also as a Palo Altan in London. In the after-glow of the just celebrated Golden Jubilee, I sign off as one who is very grateful to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II for granting me leave to reside among her subjects. Pip pip. N overnight-parking ordinance similar to Menlo Park’s. She herself had a run-in with a homeless man, resulting in a rock crashing through her window, and voiced dismay over the lack of a resolution of the carcamping problem. In 2008, city officials said an ordinance would be brought to the COUNCILBYTHAT$ECEMBER “I just think the city has to take responsibility and do something,� she said. Palo Alto attorney Owen Byrd said the poor showing of the 42 churches can’t be blamed on city efforts. To get people engaged takes multiple attempts, and a city staff with limited resources can’t be expected to do all of the work, he said. He encouraged people to become engaged. Williams agreed it would take public effort to make the parkinglot program happen. “If something stimulates that extra effort, we’d love to see it work. If there isn’t enough interest in it, we don’t have the resources to do it on our own,� he said after the meeting. Williams said he would probably give churches and businesses more time to volunteer for the parkinglot pilot program before shelving the idea. “I can’t see it being longer than six months. At some point in time you have to make the call,� he said. Absent support for the parkinglot option, city staff would probably favor the social-services option, he said. N Staff Writer Sue Dremann can be emailed at sdremann@ paweekly.com.

REAL ESTATE TRENDS

Upfront

by Samia Cullen

EDUCATION

The Importance of the Disclosure Package

Schools adopt flat budget for 2012-13

When purchasing a home in our area it is customary for the buyer to receive a disclosure package to read and sign off on. The documents in the package are extensive, complex and sometimes confusing. Although they provide you with important information, do not expect them to be sufďŹ cient to ďŹ nalize your decision about whether and on what terms to move forward with the transaction.

Key variables, including property tax, governor’s tax package, uncertain ncertainty was the theme as the Palo Alto Board of Education this week approved a $161.8 million operating budget for 2012-13 — essentially flat compared to last year. Key variables including property tax revenue, likely enrollment growth, state funding amounts and employee health costs, remain unknown even as California law requires school districts to pass budgets by July 1. On the upside for Palo Alto, early indications on revenue growth from property tax are “cautiously encouraging,� according to the school district’s Chief Business Officer Cathy Mak. Should that materialize — and Gov. Jerry Brown’s tax package pass this November — Palo Alto schools could have a balanced budget with-

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by Chris Kenrick out dipping into reserves. On the downside, Brown’s tax initiative could fail, enrollment could grow above projections and property tax could continue a three-year trend of “disappointing growth,� Mak said. The district has managed the uncertainty by maintaining an “undesignated fund balance� it can use to plug gaps. In the scenario approved this week — based on the assumption that Brown’s tax measure will fail — about $5.5 million of the current undesignated reserve of $12.7 million would be used. Property tax provides about 70 percent of the operating budget. Also on the revenue side is about $11.9 million from the district’s $589-perparcel tax, which runs through June of 2016; about $4.4 million raised by the parent-led independent founda-

tion Palo Alto Partners in Education; and $141.75 per student in California lottery income. The district’s official enrollment as of last fall was 12,286, and a new headcount will be taken in September. The bulk of district expenditures — 86 percent — go to employee salary and benefits. Currently, a starting teacher in Palo Alto earns $51,422, with an additional benefit package worth $12,865. Under terms of the district’s contract with the teachers union, Palo Alto Educators Association, teachers work their way up based on seniority and units of graduate work, with salaries for senior teachers topping out at $103,836. N Staff Writer Chris Kenrick can be emailed at ckenrick@paweekly. com.

1. Read the disclosure package promptly and thoroughly. Read carefully all disclosures and reports included in the disclosure package, keeping the terms of your contract in mind. Do not skip boiler plate disclosures because these may contain some truly important information about the duties, rights and responsibilities of different parties involved in the transaction as well as local and regional disclosures that will guide you through the process of buying the house. 2. Sellers disclose only what they know. It is absolutely possible that a home will have some issues that are not yet symptomatic or that the sellers are otherwise not aware of. 3. Pay special attention to various inspections provided by professionals. Make a list of all necessary repairs. Pay special attention to the

termite report and the condition of the main components of the house including the foundation, roof and ďŹ replaces. Find out the age of all systems (heating, electrical, plumbing etc.) and if they are functioning properly. Look for red ags that may necessitate further inspections. Highlight any questions that you want to pursue further. 4. Conduct your own visual inspections. Visit the home on multiple occasions, at various times of day and different days of the week. 5. Conduct your own investigations. Visit City Hall and investigate past building permits and future plans or contemplated additions to the house. 6. Meet with your agent and discuss the ďŹ ndings in detail. Go over your questions and create a plan for obtaining any additional information you need from the sellers, inspectors or even your own investigations. 7. Reect carefully if you’re buying a home “as-is.â€? Make sure you’re comfortable with every single issue identiďŹ ed in the ďŹ ndings and that you’re okay making the needed repairs at the agreed-upon purchase price.

If you have a real estate question or would like a free market analysis for your home, please call me at 650-384-5392, Alain Pinel Realtors, or email me at scullen@apr.com. For the latest news, follow my blog at www.samiacullen.com.

ENVIRONMENT

Courtesy of Mike Baird/bairdphotos.com

Western snowy plover gets local baylands protection Eighty-nine acres of salt pond are along Bayfront Expressway by Sue Dremann threatened pocket-sized shorebird will have 89 acres of its critical habitat protected in the baylands near Palo Alto, the Center for Biological Diversity has announced. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service on June 18 officially designated 24,527 acres in three states for the Pacific coast population of western snowy plovers. The designation settles a lawsuit filed in 2008 by the Center for Biological Diversity, which is a national nonprofit conservation organization. Critical habitat that scientists say is necessary for the birds’ survival was illegally eliminated by the Bush administration in 2005, the center claimed. The shy plovers, which weigh less than two ounces and live just three years, lost about half their habitat after the Bush administration slashed it to 12,145 acres, according to the center. The coastal population was declared a threatened species under the Endangered Species Act in 1993 after it had dropped to 1,500 birds. The plovers no longer breed at nearly two-thirds of their former nesting sites. Endangered Species Act protection first granted 19,474 acres of critical habitat in 1999, which allowed the population to increase to

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A western snowy plover in Cayucos, Calif. more than 3,600 adults by 2010, according to the center. The tiny birds can be seen along the San Francisco Bay and the Pacific coast dining on worms, insects and crustaceans in wet sand and in kelp that has washed ashore. The birds breed primarily on beaches in California, southern Washington, Oregon and Baja California, and are seen running rapidly in little groups together at the water’s edge. Plovers face many threats, including widespread and frequent disturbance of nesting sites by humans, vehicles and off-leash dogs; crushing by off-road vehicles; global climate change; pesticide use and habitat loss, the center noted. The Fish and Wildlife designation reinstates the habitat that was withdrawn in 2005 and that government scientists identified as essential. The local, 89-acre area consists of the southwestern portion of a salt pond located east of East Palo Alto. The site abuts Willow Road and is near Bayfront Expressway. The area is owned by the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission and is near the western approach to the Dumbarton Bridge, said Rudy Jurgensen, public affairs manager for Midpeninsula Regional

Open Space District. The district owns the adjacent 376-acre Ravenswood Open Space Preserve. The site has undergone renovations through the 2010 South Bay Salt Pond Restoration Project. Habitat enhancement includes ponds, islands and saltpan for several species of shorebirds, including the plovers. In 2009 the salt pond area supported 23 western snowy plover nests, 17 of which hatched young, according to a June 19 Department of the Interior/Fish and Wildlife document published in the Federal Register. Other local protected areas will include three portions of Eden Landing south of Highway 92 and the San Mateo Bridge in the East Bay. Coastal areas will include a stretch of coastline in Half Moon Bay between Young and Kelly avenues and coastal areas in Santa Cruz County, according to the Fish and Wildlife document. “Protecting critical habitat will help this lovely shorebird continue on the path to recovery,� said Tierra Curry, a conservation biologist at the center. “Species with federally protected habitat are more than twice as likely to be moving toward recovery than species without it, so this puts a big safety net between plovers and extinction.� N

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Upfront

Foothill

(continued from page 3)

end the program. Director of Cooperative Work Experience Beckie Urrutia-Lopez said international students would be particularly affected because of their visa restrictions. “The only way for them to work off campus is to take a course,” said Urrutia-Lopez, who has directed the program since 2000. She said the program motivated students to take all jobs seriously by planning learning objectives, such as creating a procedural manual for a student’s receptionist position. But as a workforce-development program, it was undervalued by administration and faculty who were

Compost

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ogy companies and the creation of a new “Organics Resource Recovery Strategy” to guide the future of the city’s waste operation. The proposed strategy document would “describe the amounts and types of organic materials that are available for energy/compost and export options, evaluate the current and potential future programs for collecting and conveying organic materials, define the process that will be used for comparing current organics management with the options provided by vendor proposals,

more comfortable with traditional academic courses, she said. Miner said cooperative work experience will be replaced by an existing internship program that allows students to earn credit in specific fields of study. Dean of Language Arts Paul Starer said Chinese and creative writing were cut to prioritize classes students need to earn degrees or transfer to a four-year college. “Teaching a Chinese class essentially crosses out one English 1A class,” he said. “It’s a zero-sum gain in that regard.” Foothill, which in previous years also offered Korean, German, and Hebrew, will now only offer Japanese and Spanish. Starer said Chinese was chosen because enrollment had been in de-

cline and no full-time staff would have to be laid off. “It wasn’t a decision made lightly,” he said. “We’re aware of existing on the Pacific Rim and the importance of Chinese as a language of increasing international importance.” Starer said creative writing was cut due to a downward trend in enrollment and because students weren’t earning degrees in the subject. “The classes were, I think, beloved by the community,” Starer said. “But it didn’t translate into the metrics the state really holds colleges accountable for, which is degrees and transfer.” Foothill’s radio station KFJC 89.7 FM will continue to operate despite the elimination of the radio program, said station supervisor and broadcasting instructor Robert “Doc” Pelzel.

“Hopefully the changeover will make almost no difference to staff or listeners,” he said. Radio classes will now be offered through the Foothill-De Anza Community College District’s community education program. These classes are non-credit and don’t receive state funding. Foothill will no longer fund Pelzel’s position or the chief engineer. But KFJC, named best community college station in 2012 by the Intercollegiate Broadcasting System, will continue to broadcast its eclectic music selections from its current location on campus. Pelzel said the station brings in $80,000 to $90,000 a year on its own, mostly through its on-air fundraising campaign. He said his position would be reduced and receive

some funding from the community education program. Pelzel said three people earned degrees from the program this year and that the concentration of radio ownership has reduced job opportunities in the field. But he said students have learned skills at the station that have translated into other fields. “Radio is just one aspect,” he said. “We’ve had people who have done graphics for record labels, music promotion, sound people for night clubs, installers of high-end video and audio.” Biotechnology and intercollegiate golf will also be discontinued next year. N Editorial Intern Bryce Druzin can be emailed at bdruzin@paweekly.com.

and develop the city’s strategy for encouraging or discouraging alternative organics management options such as food-waste disposers and home composting,” Muir wrote. The proposed action plan underscores the nature of the city’s composting dilemma, which is slated to dominate council meetings for at least the next year-and-a-half. Under this plan, the city would immediately start to develop the strategy document and the request for proposals, which would address possible composting technologies as well as options for exporting food scraps and yard trimmings. Palo Alto would launch its statemandated environmental analysis

for the new plant in July 2013 with the goal of having the study completed by January 2014. The council would then decide in February 2014 whether to build the new waste-toenergy plant or to export its compostable waste. The analysis won’t be cheap. To help meet the action plan’s timeline, Public Works staff is asking the council to add $290,224 to its contract with the city’s consultant, Alternative Resources, Inc., for a total not to exceed $517,682 in fiscal year 2013. Some of the city’s best-known conservationists, including former councilwomen Emily Renzel and Enid Pearson and land-use attorney Tom Jordan, have consistently

opposed the construction of a new plant in the Baylands. They greeted the proposed action plan with jeers and urged the council not to authorize the increase in the consultant’s contract. Renzel, who serves as the coordinator of the Baylands Conservation Committee, ripped the proposed action plan (among other things) for failing to give time for the city’s commissions to review the work that would have to be performed at the landfill. “By approving the budget amendment, the strategic plan and the timeline, you are setting yourselves up for all sorts of crazy decision-making with inadequate information, inadequate environmental review and

novel technologies,” Renzel wrote in a letter to the council. Pearson concurred and argued in her letter that Measure E created “a totally chaotic situation wherein the city staff has to guess what needs to be done, to which part of the park, and when.” She also cited the lawsuit that opponents of Measure E filed, questioning the legality of the measure. The judgment, she said, is expected in the middle of September. “It is imprudent to continue pouring money into a project that might prove to be illegal,” Pearson wrote. “The city does not have to act now and can wait a minimum time to make such a critical decision.” N

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Upfront

News Digest Woman hit with milkshake loses $2,000 A woman who was struck with a milkshake and angrily threw her purse at a vehicle full of teenagers lost $2,000 after the handbag flew into the open vehicle window, Palo Alto police said Monday. The incident started Sunday, June 24, just before midnight, Sgt. Brian Philip said. The woman was walking east on University Avenue near Rudy’s Pub when a white Range Rover full of male teenagers driving recklessly southbound on High Street approached, Philip said. One of the occupants allegedly threw a vanilla milkshake and struck the woman as she approached the corner, Philip said. Police believe the woman retaliated by throwing her alligator-skin purse at the vehicle. The purse sailed through the open window and ended up inside the vehicle, and the teens drove off, he said. The woman denied throwing her purse at the car, but Philip said there is no indication it was snatched from the victim. The woman lost $2,000 and the alligator purse, plus personal items, he said. Police are looking for the teens but have no descriptions. If found, they could face charges including battery for striking the woman with the milkshake, or possession of stolen property or misappropriation of property, Philip said. N —Sue Dremann

Thank you!

Police investigate death of man at Mitchell Park A older man died at Mitchell Park in Palo Alto Thursday morning in a shooting that police believe was self-inflicted. Palo Alto police received multiple calls at 10 a.m. of a shooting at 600 East Meadow Drive. A man had allegedly shot himself next to a picnic table near the tennis courts, Agent Marianna Villaescusa said. Personnel from the Palo Alto Fire Department pronounced him dead at the scene. Police located a weapon near his body, she said. Officers did a sweep of the area and did not find any other victims. The public is not in danger, she added. “We believe this is limited to just him,� Villaescusa said. Construction workers who are building the new Mitchell Park Library and Community Center said they have often seen an older man sitting at the picnic table while they eat lunch there. Villaescusa said no witnesses actually saw the shooting, but that investigators are talking to a number of people who were in the park. One park visitor who was about 100 feet away heard the shot. He stood up from the bench he had been sitting at. “In between me and the man there was a group of about 10 kids with three camp counselors. They were about 50 feet away. They were 9- or 10-year-olds, and the counselors shooed the kids away,� he said. The witness walked toward the man and called 911, he said. A private organization running the children’s camp has notified the parents and is providing counselors as needed, according to police. Personnel from the department have been working closely with the organization to ensure that counseling occurs. The Santa Clara County Medical Examiner will determine the cause of death. Anyone with information about the incident is asked to call the Palo Alto Police Department at 650-329-2413. N —Sue Dremann

Leadership Palo Alto 2.0 seeking applicants

Thank you for making the second annual Packard Summer Scamper another resounding success! More than 2,400 participants joined forces to raise over $160,000 for Packard Children’s Hospital. We are so grateful for everyone who ran, walked, scampered, strolled, sponsored, or volunteered to make this a great event.

SummerScamper.org

Leadership Palo Alto 2.0 has started accepting applications for its 2012-13 program. The Palo Alto Chamber of Commerce leadership program consists of 10 classes held from September 2012 to June 2013. Individual classes focus on a particular topic, such as arts, education or health care. A typical class features a keynote speaker or panel discussion followed by skill-building activities. The current program cycle has included speakers from the Moore Foundation, Stevenson House Senior Community and Palo Alto Housing Corporation. Co-Director Lisa Van Dusen said the program is meant for people who have a strong connection to Palo Alto and see themselves as emerging leaders. “This isn’t meant to be a hobby pursuit,� Van Dusen said. “It’s meant to be central to what you’re doing, whatever that may be.� Classes are scheduled on Thursdays and generally run from 8 a.m. until 6 p.m. Applicants are required to get a signature from their employers stating they will allow them time off for the class. Van Dusen said more than 400 people have completed the program, which initially ran from 1988 until 2003 before a hiatus. The program restarted in January. The program costs $1,500 and applications are due by July 6. Interviews will take place between July 16 and 27. Information is available at www.paloaltochamber.com. N —Bryce Druzin LET’S DISCUSS: Read the latest local news headlines and talk about the issues at Town Square at PaloAltoOnline.com

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Upfront

News Digest

PUBLIC SAFETY

Dog chases raccoon, maroons self

City looks to change rules for cell towers

Firefighters rescue 40-pound dog from tree in Atherton by Dave Boyce

Matched CareGivers

Courtesy of Menlo Park Fire Protection District

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radition has it that when a dog trees a raccoon, it’s a threestep process. In Step 1, the dog chases the raccoon up the tree. Step 2 has the dog standing around at the bottom of the tree looking up at the raccoon and barking. Time passes. In Step 3, the dog realizes the futility of barking and goes away, whereupon the raccoon climbs down and resumes its life. Guinness, a 40-pound, 8-year-old Wheaton terrier, added a nuance on the evening of June 19 in Atherton: Step 2a, in which the dog climbs the tree, chasing the raccoon to a higher perch. The problem with this is Step 2b: Getting out of the tree once you realize that you’re a dog and that there’s a reason that dogs don’t climb trees. Firefighters Bill Gilmore, Felkak House and Tony Eggimann from the Menlo Park Fire Protection District organized a rescue, taking Guinness from a large, lateral branch of an old

Firefighter Tony Eggimann of the Menlo Park Fire Protection District prepares to rescue Guinness, a 40-pound, eight-year-old Wheaton terrier, from an Atherton oak tree the dog had climbed while chasing a raccoon. oak after giving him a treat and fitting him into his travel harness, Fire Chief Harold Schapelhouman said in a statement. Guinness was “frozen in place, nervous and shaking� on a branch 30 feet above the ground and 50 feet above the Atherton Drainage Channel when Eggimann, atop a 36foot ladder, captured him and carried him safely back to the ground, Schapelhouman stated. The dog’s owner had also climbed the tree, though not as far as her dog, but firefighters convinced her to climb back down, Schapelhouman said. The family asked not to

be identified, he said. Did Guinness learn a lesson? Only time will tell. “In my 32 years in the Fire Service, we have been asked to rescue many cats in trees, and while we have rescued dogs from pipes, culverts, under homes and many other locations closer to the ground, I have never seen or heard of a dog that could climb a tree,� Schapelhouman stated. “I’m glad this had such a positive ending, Guinness is an amazing animal.� N Almanac Staff Writer Dave Boyce can be emailed at dboyce@ almanacnews.com.

Hampered by poor cell-phone reception and a growing appetite for data capacity from its tech-savvy residents, Palo Alto is looking to change its zoning regulations to allow large cell towers at city-owned sites. The City Council on Monday, June 25, heard a detailed presentation about the city’s data needs from David Tanczos, vice president with Crown Castle International, which owns and operates wireless-communications equipment. Tanczos presented a series of options for meeting the city’s cell-reception needs, including three towers exceeding 200 feet in height or a combination of five smaller towers (around 100 feet tall) and 21 antennas that would be part of a “distributed antenna system.� Though the council didn’t vote on any proposed zone changes, several members expressed enthusiasm for the prospect of allowing a few large wireless facilities. The alternative — a network of about 80 antennas installed on utility poles — was panned by dozens of residents when AT&T unveiled it last year. The city has already approved the first 20 of these antennas. Councilwoman Karen Holman proposed “streamlining� the permit process for larger installations while keeping the process the same for the smaller but more numerous antennas that make up a distributed antenna system. Councilwoman Nancy Shepherd said she welcomed the prospect of adding infrastructure that improves cell reception, particularly if the city doesn’t have to pay for this infrastructure. The council is scheduled to continue its discussion Monday night, at which time it’s expected to direct staff to evaluate the potential zoning amendments, consider ways to encourage use of “co-location facilities� (those that use existing utility poles), and prepare a request for proposals for a company to help the city develop a citywide plan for wireless communication facilities. N —Gennady Sheyner

Space Systems/Loral to be sold for $1 billion Loral Space & Communications Inc. announced Tuesday, June 26, that it will sell its Palo Alto-based subsidiary Space Systems/Loral in a deal that could top $1 billion. The sale will be made to Canada-based MacDonald, Dettwiler and Associates Ltd. “Both Space Systems/Loral and MacDonald, Dettwiler and Associates are already important suppliers to the worldwide satellite industry,� John Celli, president of Space Systems/Loral, said in a press release. “The combination is a very good strategic fit for both companies. Together, we will be in an even stronger position to support the growth requirements of both new and existing customers.� The boards of directors of Loral and MacDonald, Dettwiler and Associates have each approved the agreement, and the sale is expected to close later this year after regulatory approvals and customary closing conditions are completed. Loral Space & Communications is a satellite communications company that designs and makes satellites and satellite systems for commercial and government applications. Services include fixed satellite services, direct-to-home television, broadband communications, wireless telephony, weather monitoring and air-traffic management. N —Helen Carefoot

Juana Briones gets new principal

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The Palo Alto school board confirmed a new principal for Juana Briones Elementary School Tuesday night, June 26. Lisa Hickey, an elementary school principal in the Cupertino Union School District since 2005, will join the Palo Alto district effective July 1. She replaces Matthew Nagle, principal since 2009, who announced last month that he would leave the school to work on projects at the district’s central office. Hickey was one of two finalists interviewed last week by a Juana Briones search team that included parents and teachers. “I’m really energized that Palo Alto has smaller elementary schools,� Hickey told the board Tuesday, noting that her most recent school, Meyerholz Elementary School, has an enrollment of 750. Last year’s enrollment at Juana Briones, by contrast, was 415. “In Palo Alto it’s really possible to get to know all the students and parents. Palo Alto has the resources to do what’s best for children, keeping the fourth- and fifth-grade class sizes smaller.� Hickey was accompanied by her husband and two sons as well as by her father and mother, a retired school principal. At Meyerholz, Hickey oversaw both a neighborhood population and a Mandarin-immersion program. Prior to that, she was principal of Sedgwick School, which had a large special-education population. She also worked as an assistant principal and a middle school teacher in Cupertino, and has extensive experience with special education and preschool students. Hickey earned a bachelor’s in sociology from the University of California at Los Angeles as well as master’s degrees in interdisciplinary education and educational administration from Santa Clara University. “Fourteen years ago when I was getting my credential at Santa Clara I said that Palo Alto was my dream job,� she said. N —Chris Kenrick

Upfront

CityView A round-up of

Palo Alto government action this week

Public Art Commission (June 21)

Mitchell Park: The commission approved $4,725 to pour a concrete pad for the park’s “Push� sculpture. Yes: Collins, Richter, Ross, Tobak, Usich, Walsh Absent: Ambrose

City Council Committee (June 25)

Park Plaza: The council approved a proposed three-story building at 195 Page Mill Road, which includes 82 apartments, research-and-development space and retail area on the ground floor. Yes: Burt, Espinosa, Holman, Klein, Scharff, Schmid, Shepherd, Yeh Absent: Price Cell towers: The council discussed potential revisions to the city’s zoning policies to enable installation of large cell towers on city land. The council voted to continue the discussion to its next meeting. Yes: Burt, Espinosa, Holman, Klein, Scharff, Schmid, Shepherd No: Yeh Absent: Price

Board of Education (June 26)

Budget: The board approved a school district operating budget of $161.8 million for 2012-13. Yes: Unanimous Superintendent’s contract: The board voted to extend the employment contract of Superintendent Kevin Skelly for one year, through June 30, 2016. Yes: Unanimous

City Council Regional Housing Mandate Committee (June 26)

Housing Element: The committee discussed the Housing Element in the city’s revised Comprehensive Plan and recommended a series of changes, including consideration of grocery overlay zones and a refined list of housing sites. Yes: Unanimous

City Council Rail Committee (June 28)

Rail: The committee heard a report from its Sacramento lobbyist on high-speed rail and discussed the committee’s guiding principles. The committee directed staff to submit a letter requesting the status of the California Attorney General opinion on the legality of the blended system relative to Proposition 1A Yes: Klein, Scharff, Shepherd Absent: Burt

LET’S DISCUSS: Read the latest local news headlines and talk about the issues at Town Square at PaloAltoOnline.com

“I look forward to continuing to Skelly has been criticized by a work together with you.â€? parent group, We Can Do Better (continued from page 3) Skelly’s recent years have been Palo Alto, which has lobbied the marked by challenges on stiffening district to do more to directly adhumor, resilience, knowledge and high-school graduation dress issues of academic skills.â€? requirements, managing stress. We Can Do BetBoard member Barbara Klaus- significant turnover in ter co-founders Ken ner — who two weeks ago publicly senior staff and initiaand Michele Dauber 17 chastised Skelly for what she de- tives to address student months ago called on the scribed as his failure to accurately emotional health followboard to replace Skelly. communicate the board’s direction ing student deaths by suiIn response to Public on counseling issues to Gunn High cide in 2009 and 2010. Records Act requests School staff members — Tuesday Skelly said: “I love from the Daubers as well went out of her way to praise him. this job; I love this comas from Palo Alto Week“In light of my recent commen- munity; I love this work. ly Publisher Bill Johnson, tary about the board-superintendent Obviously it’s hard work, Skelly in the past month relationship, I want to take this op- and there are times when Kevin Skelly has released hundreds of portunity to express my profound we have conversations emails and “Confidential appreciation to Dr. Skelly,â€? Klaus- like you do when you’re Weeklyâ€? memos he sent ner said, citing Skelly’s “consid- passionate about stuff, but it’s re- to the board. erable body of sterling work and ally, really fun work, and I can’t Calling for a halt to the confileadership. imagine doing anything different.â€? dential weeklies, Johnson said the practice might have violated the prohibition on policymaking by serial communication in California’s open-meeting law. Skelly, board members and A preview of Palo Alto government meetings next week school district counsel Louis Lozano maintain no violation ocCITY COUNCIL ‌ The council plans to discuss the long-term plan for the curred but have referred the issue Regional Water Quality Control Plant and the proposed action plan for of communication protocols to a construction of a waste-to-energy facility at Byxbee Park. The council is board committee for review and also scheduled to continue its discussion on potential revisions to the cityĂ­s possible revision. N zoning regulations to allow installation of cell towers on city property. The Staff Writer Chris Kenrick can meeting will begin at 6 p.m. on Monday, July 2, in the Council Chambers at be emailed at ckenrick@paweekly. City Hall (250 Hamilton Ave.). com.

Skelly

Public Agenda

CITY COUNCIL FINANCE COMMITEE ‌ The committee plans to review the financial report for the third quarter of fiscal year 2012 and to discuss the scope and methodology of the Cost of Services study. The meeting will begin at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, July 3, in the Council Conference Room at City Hall (250 Hamilton Ave.).

SEE MORE ONLINE

www.PaloAltoOnline.com Copy of Kevin Skelly’s contract can be found on PaloAltoOnline.com

Bariatric Surgeons Mountain View 650-404-8400 Prithvi Legha, M.D. Palo Alto 650-853-2331 John Feng, M.D. Beemen Khalil, M.D. Redwood City 650-853-2331 John Feng, M.D. pamf.org/wls

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Pulse

A weekly compendium of vital statistics

POLICE CALLS Palo Alto June 21-27 Violence related Battery . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Child abuse. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Theft related Grand theft . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .4 Identity theft . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .4 Petty theft . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 Vehicle related Abandoned auto . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Auto recovery . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Auto theft . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Driving w/suspended license . . . . . . . . .3 Hit and run . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .4 Lost/stolen plates . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Misc. traffic . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .5 Theft from auto . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .2 Vehicle accident/minor injury . . . . . . . . 10 Vehicle accident/property damage. . . . .9 Vehicle tow . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .5 Alcohol or drug related Drunk in public . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .8 Drunken driving. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .3 Possession of drugs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .4 Miscellaneous Disposal request. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1

Found property. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .2 Lost property . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .4 Misc. penal code violation . . . . . . . . . . .4 Missing person . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .2 Possession of stolen property . . . . . . . .1 Psychiatric hold . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .3 Suspicious circumstances . . . . . . . . . . .3 Terrorist threats. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Warrant/other agency . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .5

Menlo Park June 21-27 Violence related Battery . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Homicide . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Theft related Fraud . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .2 Grand theft . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Petty theft . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .3 Residential burglaries . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .3 Vehicle related Auto theft . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Driving w/suspended license . . . . . . . . .6 Driving without license . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Hit and run . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Parking/driving violation . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Vehicle accident/minor injury . . . . . . . . .5 Vehicle tow . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Alcohol or drug related Drug activity . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1

COMMUNITY SURVEY The City of Palo Alto seeks the community’s input on the Rinconada Park Long Range Plan Project Visit the project’s web site and click on the Community Survey link at

www.cityofpaloalto.org/rinconadaplan Completing the Community Survey is a great way to be involved with the future development of Rinconada Park Email pwecips@cityofpaloalto.org for more information or call City of Palo Alto Public Works, (650) 617-3183

Kathleen Prior Kathleen Prior (born Kathleen Wineman) of Palo Alto, wife of Christopher Prior, beloved mother of Matthew, Mark, Andrew, and Christine, treasured friend of many, and devoted teacher of countless preschoolers, died at home on June 14, 2012. She was 55. She fought a long and tenacious battle with cancer. Kathleen deďŹ ed all odds, living courageously and determined to see her two youngest children graduate from high school in early June. She exempliďŹ ed maternal love, embodied kindness, and bore her battle with patience and unimaginable strength. Kathleen was born on November 12, 1956 in Harvey, Illinois. She subsequently moved to Menlo Park and attended local schools including Woodside High School. Kathleen graduated from Stanford University in 1978, with a bachelor’s degree in History and Honors in Humanities. She earned her MBA degree at Cornell University in 1984. She then worked for several years as a ďŹ nancial analyst for two Aerospace companies before stopping to raise her young

family. She returned to work the past 8 years as a teacher at Parents Nursery School in Palo Alto where she loved being around young children and was devoted to her students. She was an avid reader, competitive swimmer, and strong backpacker. She enjoyed many family vacations to Hawaii and Carmel and was a long time member of Foothills Tennis and Swimming club. Kathleen leaves behind her husband of 30 years, Christopher, her four children, her father Paul Wineman of Palo Alto, brothers Bruce Wineman of New York City and Scott Wineman of Mountain View, Uncles John Abel of Malibu and Neal Wineman of Sisters, Oregon and many cousins. Private services will be held. PA I D

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OBITUARY

Drunk in public . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Possession of drugs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .3 Possession of paraphernalia. . . . . . . . . .1 Miscellaneous Coroner case . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Disturbance . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .3 Disturbing/annoying phone calls. . . . . . .1 Found property. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .3 Info case . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .9 Lost property . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Medical aid . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Probation violation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .2 Psychiatric hold . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Resisting arrest. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Vandalism . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16 Warrant arrest. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .4

Atherton June 21-27 Violence related Assault . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Theft related Fraud . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Vehicle related Abandoned auto . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Hit and run . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .2 Misc. traffic . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .2 Parking/driving violation . . . . . . . . . . . . .2 Suspicious vehicle . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 Vehicle accident/minor injury . . . . . . . . .5 Vehicle code violation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .8 Miscellaneous Animal call. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .5 Citizen assist. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .6 Civil matter . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Construction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Disturbance . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .2 Fire call . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Found property. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Foot patrol . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Hazard . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .4 Juvenile problem. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .3 Medical aid . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Meet citizen . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .4 Outside assistance . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .7 Property for destruction . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Suspicious circumstances . . . . . . . . . . .4 Suspicious person . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .3 Town ordinance violation . . . . . . . . . . . .2 Trespassing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Vandalism . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Warrant arrest. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .2 Welfare check . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Wires down. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1

VIOLENT CRIMES Palo Alto Unlisted block Embarcadero Road, 6/22, 3:26 p.m.; battery. Unlisted block W. Bayshore Road, 6/25, 10:31 a.m.; child abuse/neglect.

Menlo Park Unlisted block Berkeley Avenue, 6/22, 1:04 a.m.; battery. 1300 block Madera Avenue, 6/23, 2:45 a.m.; homicide.

Atherton Unlisted block Stockbridge Avenue, 6/23, 5:42 p.m.; simple assault/battery.

Transitions Arnold Wihtol

Arnold Wihtol, a longtime employee of Varian Associates, died June 8. He was 90. He was born Dec. 11, 1921, and raised in Chicago, Ill. He was the second of two sons of Latvian immigrants who met, married and settled in Chicago. Latvian was spoken in their home, but he learned English attending public schools. He graduated from Steinmetz High School in Chicago in 1939. He also completed some course work at the Chicago City Junior College in 1941. He then worked at Raytheon in Waltham, Mass., until he joined the Navy during World War II. After the war he made his way to California and was hired as the 39th employee in 1949 at Varian Associates, which was located in San Carlos at the time. The Varian brothers and their company were instrumental in the invention and manufacturing of vacuum tubes, including the klystron. Varian later became a Fortune 500 company. He was hired as an engineer, assembler and maintenance man. In 1950 he married Helen Smith Rogers, who also worked at Varian. He worked his way up the company, becoming the manager of the tube division and ultimately a vice president of the tube division. He retired after 42 years at the age of 70. His wife, Helen, and brother, Wes, preceded him in death. He is survived by his daughter, Pamela Hawley of Kelseyville, Calif.; his son, Jeff Wihtol of Portland, Ore.; seven grandchildren, one great grandson, two nieces, four nephews and numerous cousins.

Ronald Dorfman Ronald Dorfman, former professor of pathology at the Stanford University School of Medicine, died June 15 at Stanford Hospital of heart failure. He was 89. He came to Stanford from Washington University in St. Louis in 1968. He co-founded and co-direct-

ed the surgical pathology laboratory at Stanford Hospital. He held this post for nearly 35 years until his retirement in 1993. He also helped to develop the subspecialty of hematopathology, a branch of pathology focused on diseases of the hematopoetic, or bloodforming, cells. He subsequently co-founded the Society for Hematopathology in 1981 and served as its second president. In 1993, he was invited by the United States and Canadian Academy of Pathology to present the Maude Abbott lecture describing developments in the then-burgeoning field. In the 1970s, he developed a lymphoma classification system that would allow the researchers to accurately determine the effect of their radiation-based treatment for Hodgkin’s lymphoma. The physicians’ efforts transformed the disease into one of the most curable forms of cancer. He was born in Johannesburg, South Africa, on March 14, 1923. He entered medical school at the University of the Witwatersrand, but his education was interrupted from 1944 to 1946 by his military service in a South African surgical unit serving with the Allied forces in Egypt and Italy. He received the South African equivalent of a U.S. medical degree, an MBBCh, in 1948 and did his post-graduate training at Johannesburg General Hospital, the Medical School of London and the Royal Victoria Hospital in Edinburgh. He is survived by his wife, Zelma of Palo Alto; daughters, Erica Dorfman of Seattle, Wash., Annie Nieves of Clovis, Calif., and Carol Dorfman of Guilford, Conn.; brother, Stanley Dorfman of Los Angeles, Calif.; and two grandsons. The family suggests any donations in his memory be made to “MĂŠdecins Sans Frontièresâ€? (Doctors Without Borders), which can be reached at www.doctorswithoutborders.org/donate. A memorial service for family and friends will be held at Channing House in Palo Alto on July 14 from 3 to 5 p.m. The Stanford Department of Pathology will be arranging an additional memorial service in his honor in the fall.

Visit

Lasting Memories An online directory of obituaries and remembrances. Search obituaries, submit a memorial, share a photo. Go to: www.PaloAltoOnline.com/obituaries

Good for Business. Good for You. Good for the Community.

Mildred Karabats 1916-2012 th

On June 25 , we lost our beloved mother, best friend, grandmother, and great grandmother. Mildred was preceded in death by Chris, her loving husband of 66 years, and also by her son Bill and grandson Chris. Mildred is survived by her sons Art (Janis), Stan, Chris (Natalie), Larry (Stephanie), and daughter Valerie (Craig) as well as seven grand children, eleven great grand children, and three great great grand children. Mildred was born in Boston, MA, the daughter of Ernest and Mildred Knight. She met the love of her life, Chris at a mutual friend’s party and started their love adventure together that took them across the country three times between Lexington, MA and Palo Alto/San Jose, CA. while Chris was working at Varian Associates. Mildred and Chris enjoyed traveling, touring the west coast and visiting their son Chris and wife Natalie in Las Vegas and Europe. She was an

avid bridge player and spent hours playing bridge with the girls at The Villages Golf and Country Club for over 25 years. Her greatest passion though was her family. She spent much of her life with all of them, especially her grand, great grand, and great great grand children. She will be cherished and greatly missed. A viewing will be held on Sunday, July 1, from 4-8 pm at the Roller, Hapgood, and Tinney funeral home in Palo Alto. The funeral service will be at the funeral home and will begin at 12 noon on Monday, July 2, with internment to follow at the Alta Mesa Park Cemetery in Palo Alto. PA I D

OBITUARY

Jules Gilbert Moritz, Jr. Brother, Husband, Father, Engineer and Racer Jules Gilbert Moritz, Jr., passed away peacefully at his home in Gilroy, California, on May 19, 2012. He was surrounded by his loving family. Jules Jr., was born to Jules Gilbert and Phyllis Ruth (Baer) Moritz in New York City, New York on June 22, 1941, His only sibling, Carol Ellen, was born two years later. Jules Jr. graduated with straight A’s from Washington High School in Fremont, California. He continued his education at Stanford University where he enrolled in the mechanical engineering program and graduated in 1964, with his engineering degree. Jules Jr’s. only child, Jules Gilbert Moritz, III was born in 1963. After college, Jules Jr., landed a job at Microform Data Systems. That job began a 40+ year career designing data storage manufacturing equipment for many companies (including Adelphi, Quantum and Western Digital) in what would later become Silicon Valley. He retired from Western Digital in 2008. Jules Jr’s. job enabled the family to move to Los Altos Hills. It was at this point, that he purchased his ďŹ rst Ferrari and joined the local Ferrari Owners Club more than 30 years ago. He began attending track days to feed his urge to race at Laguna Seca & InďŹ neon Raceway. He ultimately joined the CSRG Race Group, HMSA Race Group and the Historic Gran Prix Race Group and PaciďŹ c Region of the Ferrari Owners Club and raced all over the world. After several failed marriages, Jules Jr. married Judy Jennings-Moritz in 1981. This began 31 years of sharing real estate, travel and racing. They resided on the Peninsula in Palo Alto Hills, Woodside & Portola Valley before moving to Gilroy, California, in 2000. Jules Jr. and Judy traveled extensively with

trips to Africa, England, Italy, Monaco, Montreal Canada, and t h rou g hout the United States. Jules Jr. participated regularly at the Monterey Historic Races. He came in second at the Silver State Classic Challenge, as well as winning his class at the Virginia City Hillclimb all in 1988. Additional highlights include 2006 Wine Country Classic Best in show and performance, 2008 Kohler International Challenge at Road America in Wisconsin. He drove multiple Historic Formula One races at Infineon and Laguna Seca. In June of 2010 Jules Jr. participated in the Historic Formula One race group, as a support race, to the current F-1 Races at Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, in Montreal Canada. This was the final race that Jules Jr. would drive. Jules Jr. died after courageously battling Multiple Myeloma for two years. He is survived by his wife, Judy Jennings-Moritz, his son, Jules Moritz III, daughter-in-law, Whitney Olsen, his sister, Carol Schiesser, and brother-in-law, Hans Schiesser A Memorial Service will be held at The Menlo Park Presbyterian Church, 950 Santa Cruz Avenue, Menlo Park, on July 13, 2012 at 1:00pm. A Reception to follow at the church parish hall. In lieu of owers, the family has requested that donations be made in his name to: myeloma.org and www.pathwayshealth.org PA I D

OBITUARY

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Editorial

City should jump on cellular solution Locating antennas at power substations could be the start of comprehensive policy

T

he City Council has an opportunity to end the often divisive neighborhood fights over installation of small cell phone antennas by simply making space available to install much larger and more powerful antennas at a few city-owned utility substations, and even one on the roof of City Hall. The possible solution was outlined to the council by a consultant Monday, who described several plans, including one that would need only three antennas of up to 280 feet to cover most of the city, although he acknowledged that such a plan might not pass muster with residents. But a “hybrid option� featuring five thin towers of 100-125 feet could be nestled among equipment at five of the city’s utility substations, and with the addition of a sixth unit on top of City Hall, could cover most neighborhoods. About 20 smaller “micro� antennas would be required to fill in some major gaps in this option. Some neighborhoods will object to even a few of the smaller antennas favored by AT&T, but when coupled with the handful of larger towers, we believe this configuration will go a long way toward helping the city balance the insatiable demand for cellular bandwidth with some residents’ objections to having a wireless transmitter anywhere near their home. Precedent exists for the installation of the larger “macro� towers, which are already in place at three local fire stations, including one disguised as a tree. A Planning and Community Environment Department official told the Weekly that “the intent of the ‘macro’ approach is to allow the city to better dictate the location of tower facilities and to minimize the need for DAS (micro) and other antenna facilities in other parts of the community.� From the city’s perspective, there are significant advantages to creating a network of cellular towers at utility substations, including: s A readily available inventory of tower locations on pre-approved sites s The ability of the city’s fiber optic network to be used by wireless carriers to “backhaul� data between tower locations s The ability of substations to provide wireless carriers access to pre-installed power and equipment housings s The flow of revenue that could come to the city under long-term leases of the facilities. The staff report notes that one obvious advantage of using a few substation sites for wireless antennas “would be blending common aspects of facilities everyone needs and leveraging the common characteristics of both the utility substation and macro cell towers.� If the council agrees to embark on the ‘hybrid’ concept in the next few weeks, one of the first steps would be to retain a wireless communications consultant to evaluate the potential sites and designs for towers and antennas. The consultant would have to determine what impact a wireless tower would have on each utility substation. Also, the city will have to modify zoning regulations, including raising the height limits for public facility zoning from 75 to 125 feet in order to install the towers on each of the designated substation sites. Even if the city were to authorize the macro tower network, carriers cannot be forced to locate their transmitters on the new system if they prefer to use the smaller, micro antennas. However, the staff report said the city could offer favorable lease rates and a streamlined process for approving permits to make it more attractive for multiple carriers to place their equipment on the macro towers. This could help meet the city’s goal of centralizing transmitters rather than having each carrier go in a different direction. It is totally appropriate for the city to provide space at its utility substations for cellular transmitters. The city has owned and operated utilities here for nearly 120 years and more recently has invested in a successful fiber network ring to connect its utility substations and other city facilities and commercial businesses. But telecommunications services have been provided to residents by private companies, which have installed a patchwork of antennas on city light poles and other equipment, as well as on private property. A new network of macro antennas could change all that by providing space to multiple carriers in a much more reliable, centralized environment. Such a system would allow the city to select tower locations and reduce the need for micro installations, which many residents consider ugly and noisy. It is possible that a communications company could provide upfront funding for a new hybrid system and provide the city with some steady rental income, all of which, in our opinion, adds up to an appealing proposition. N

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Spectrum Editorials, letters and opinions

Residences above labs Editor, Regarding the Park Plaza project, is the City Council of Palo Alto really willing to have residential units above laboratories? We don’t know what kind of research will take place below the residential units, but any labs that contain hazardous materials should not be permitted. We should have learned from the CPI problem. Also, non-hazardous materials can pose a danger when combined. The city needs to have a chemist check out whatever research is done which involves lab work. Also, the air should be tested in the residential units and in the R&D space at least once a year and if there are any complaints. That toxic plume below the project should always be a concern, despite what mitigations are put in place. Natalie Fisher Ellsworth Place Palo Alto

Improve public transit Editor, Not sure why Steve Eittreim thinks building high-speed rail to Los Angeles will reduce the traffic on 101 or for that matter, traffic on the L.A. freeways. The problem we have is not getting to L.A. but moving around the area we live, something that most people do far more than traveling to L.A. Europe has much better local public transport and more compact cities, which makes high-speed rails between cities more attractive and financially more viable. When I do go to L.A. I have little problem given we have frequent flights from the various Bay Area airports that end in various parts of the L.A. basin, something that high-speed rail will not do. Still I can always get off the train in L.A., rent a car, and add my car to the L.A. freeways. If we want to get out of our cars the only option is to improve local public transportation. Walter Murray Ross Road Palo Alto

Simple parking solution Editor, Last Friday’s editorial recommended that the city experiment with pricing of garage parking permits to encourage downtown workers to park their cars in a city garage rather than Professorville. This plan could be costly, timeconsuming and possibly inaccurate. I’d like to suggest a simple solution that will quickly provide a workable parking-permit program. The key is to use an online Dutch auction, which is a special kind of auction that allows multiple identical items to be auctioned with all winners paying the lowest of the successful bids. I have found two

websites that support online Dutch auctions. The city could (after much publicity) conduct a week-long, online Dutch auction to sell parking permits for several hundred parking spaces, each permit lasting perhaps 90 days. If this process works, subsequent auctions could be conducted, perhaps varying the number of available parking permits to adjust the likely winning price. If this solution is implemented,

Professorville streets will have fewer parked cars, and downtown garages will have fewer empty spaces. Also, the city will know the market value of its garage parking spaces. This solution will cost the city far less than a residential permit-parking program and it could be in place within a few months. Robert Herriot Byron Street Palo Alto

This week on Town Square

Town Square is an online discussion forum at www.PaloAltoOnline.com Posted June 27 at 12:16 a.m. by Andrew Boone, a resident of the Crescent Park neighborhood: Good job, Palo Alto City Council (re: “Harold Hohbach’s ‘Park Plaza’ project wins approval�). Higher-density, mixed-use developments near transit are essential to addressing traffic congestion in Palo Alto. Jobs near transit reduce the need to commute by car, and housing

near jobs (that’s the mixed-use part) reduce it even further. Palo Alto has a severe housing shortage that forces most employees to live elsewhere and commute longer distances. And placing so many jobs far from good transit (Stanford Research Park, for example) requires most to drive to those jobs. The Park Plaza project is a step in the right direction. Now let’s get more built like that!

WHAT DO YOU THINK? The Palo Alto Weekly encourages comments on our coverage or on issues of local interest.

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Do you favor allowing cell towers on city property?

Submit letters to the editor of up to 250 words to letters@paweekly.com. Include your name, address and daytime phone number so we can reach you. We reserve the right to edit contributions for length, objectionable content, libel and factual errors known to us. Anonymous letters will generally not be accepted. Submitting a letter to the editor or guest opinion constitutes a granting of permission to the Palo Alto Weekly and Embarcadero Media to also publish it online, including in our online archives and as a post on Town Square. For more information contact Editor Jocelyn Dong or Online Editor Tyler Hanley at editor@paweekly.com or 650-326-8210.

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Guest Opinion

Residents have their own perspective on Stanford trails By James Sweeney

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he decade-long Stanford trails saga has been playing out in county boardrooms, city councils, and the courts. Hopefully, it will soon be completed. A f ter St a n ford made $10.3 million available, many parties have expressed strong views on spending that money. But these funds were provided by Stanford University for one explicit contractual purpose related to the General Use Permit (GUP) the university received from the county in 2000. Quoting from the contract, the purpose is: only to mitigate impact OS-3 of the Environmental Impact Report for the GUP (in other words: the adverse effect on recreational opportunities for existing or new campus residents and facility users that will be caused by the housing and academic development approved by the GUP). These funds were never meant as a general mitigation of GUP impacts; more than 100 specific GUP conditions mitigate other specific impacts. As president of the elected board of Stanford Residential Leaseholders (SCRL), I would like our neighbors to understand the issue from the perspective of campus residents. We believe the $10.3 million must be spent only for those opportunities that campus residents and facility users will reasonably and frequently use for their recreation.

To appreciate our position, it is important to understand the genesis of the funds. In 2000, Santa Clara County granted Stanford University a General Use Permit that controls how Stanford land in unincorporated Santa Clara County can be used. The GUP allowed Stanford to apply for expansion of academic buildings and on-campus housing. In turn, the GUP placed more than 100 conditions on Stanford for mitigation of impacts. One condition of the 100 required Stanford to construct portions of two trails relatively well-specified in the Santa Clara County Trails Master plan — the S1 trail and the C1 trail. These trails are contiguous to the campus and would be regularly used by campus residents, students, faculty, and by others who visit the campus for recreation. Almost immediately, a dispute arose over whether those two trails were to be located on the periphery or in the interior of Stanford lands. Protagonists did not represent Stanford residents. Finally, in 2005, the Santa Clara County Board Supervisors specified locations of the S1 and C1 trails and signed a contract with Stanford that clarified their implementation. The contract specified that Stanford was to build the S1 trail across the foothills from Foothill Expressway to near Interstate 280. The Matadero Creek Trail is now open. The contract also proposed a new trail — the C2 trail — to connect the Matadero Creek Trail to the Arastradero Preserve, through Los Altos Hills. The C2 trail has recently been approved by Los Altos Hills, and we hope its construction will begin soon. The unresolved issue was the C1 trail,

along Alpine Road in unincorporated San Mateo County and Portola Valley. The contract required Stanford to offer money to Portola Valley and to San Mateo County to reconstruct segments of the C1 trail. These offers were to remain open until December 31, 2011. Portola Valley accepted Stanford’s offer. Recently, Portola Valley rededicated a Stanford-funded trail along Alpine Road. However, the San Mateo County Supervisors rejected improvements along Alpine Road between the Menlo Park border and the Portola Valley border. Therefore, under terms of the 2000 GUP contract, Stanford paid Santa-Clara County the accumulated amount of the offer to San Mateo County, $10.3 million. The SCRL board believes that Santa Clara County must spend the funds in the manner specified by the contract between the county and Stanford. The contract was very clear: the money was required to mitigate the impact on campus residents and facility users of GUP-allowed expansion. It was not for funding general recreational availability in unrelated areas of Santa Clara County. Therefore, the $10.3 million must be used for recreational opportunities that will directly serve campus residents and facility users. The originally proposed trails all would have satisfied that purpose. They were contiguous to the campus and would be used by a wide spectrum of the campus residents, including many different age groups. SCRL is finishing a proposal for a new peripheral trail surrounding the academic campus that could be used by adults and

children for walking, jogging, and biking. The proposal would allow a continuous trail from El Camino Real to the S1 trail, and then on to Arastradero Preserve. Contiguous to the campus and to Palo Alto, such a trail would be regularly used by campus residents, by residents of our neighboring cities, and by others who visit Stanford to use its recreational facility. We believe that such a trail would be consistent with the spirit and letter of the Stanford-Santa Clara County contract. Others have proposed spending almost all of the money on a bicycle bridge over Route 101 near Shoreline Park and the Dumbarton link of the Bay Trail. These projects are distant enough from campus that they would not be used frequently for recreation by campus residents, even though they could add to the general recreational availability in Santa Clara County. Thus they do not satisfy either the spirit or letter of the contract. With alternative opportunities, we believe the funds should be spent on the facility or facilities that provide maximum benefit to the people most affected by the impact of the GUP, and that it should not be spent on projects that at most would provide limited or infrequent benefits to those people. I hope our neighbors in Santa Clara County will understand that we campus residents feel strongly that the money should be spent only for its intended purpose. â–  James (Jim) Sweeney is board president of the Stanford Campus Residential Leaseholders. This board, elected by the homeowners on Stanford Campus, serves the Stanford residential community.

Streetwise

What are your plans for the Fourth of July? Question and interviews by Helen Carefoot. Photographs by Maytal Mark. Asked on Cambridge Avenue in Palo Alto.

Aaron Sorkino

Works in technology El Camino Real, Palo Alto “I’m working.�

Andrea Roucoule

Pregnant mother Oxford Street, Palo Alto “We’re maybe having a baby.�

Peter Nelson

Retired writer Laurel Street, Palo Alto “I have no idea, yet.�

Robert Goodwin

Builder South California Avenue, Palo Alto “I’m going to the Green Meadow parade. We’re also going to the Palo Alto Chili Cook-off, then, in the evening we’re going take the train and rollerblade around San Francisco to watch the fireworks on the Marina.�

Ruth Ramberg

Retired technical writer Ponce Drive, Palo Alto “No idea. It depends on my grandchildren.�

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Cover Story

Veronica Weber

Palo Alto resident Dan Nitzan has been running the Shoreline Fourth of July fireworks show in Mountain View since its inception in 1984. Here, he holds a sample fireworks mortar, known as an “aerial shell.�

Every year, crew with Palo Alto ties mounts patriotic Shoreline spectacle by Jocelyn Dong

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or Dan Nitzan’s first professional-fireworks job, he was supposed to remove a tarp protecting the final group of fireworks so that sparks wouldn’t accidentally land on them and set them off early. It was the grand opening of a J. C. Penney in Los Banos, Calif. “Well, I didn’t pull the tarp far enough away, and when the finale went off, lots of burning things landed on the tarp and burned a big hole in it,� the Palo Alto resident recently recalled. The friend who had hired him wasn’t too mad, though. “His first show as a licensed operator, he shot right through his tarp,� Nitzan said. Many are the potential mishaps when fireworks are involved, but fortunately for Nitzan, what’s gone wrong since that first show in the early 1980s has been minor: an occasional brush fire, the burnt tarp and an on-the-ground explosion or two. “It’s been 30 years now of, you know, one fun thing after another,� he said, sitting in his living room. Nitzan these days mounts the Fourth of July fireworks show at Shoreline Amphitheater in Mountain View, an event that takes two days of set up and weeks of preparation.

For many Americans, Independence Day means relaxation. But for Nitzan and his crew, the holiday means Department of Homeland Security background checks, sore backs and — hopefully — a job well done. “It’s 18 hours of hard work, 15 to 20 minutes of ‘Wow,’ then another two hours of hard work,� said Jeff Hoover, a crew member. “It’s a labor of love — for us at least.� Shawn Hoover, Jeff’s wife and also part of the team, readily confesses to exhaustion on July 5. But she still considers the work to entertain tens of thousands of spectators worth it. “I’ve never said, ‘Never again. Forget this,’� she said. The Hoovers’ and Nitzan’s commitment notwithstanding, professional displays of fireworks have taken a hit over the past decade. Anti-terrorism measures following 9/11, escalating insurance costs and the tumbling economy have led cities across the country to forgo the traditional highlight of America’s birthday celebration. San Jose eliminated its downtown show in 2009. Half Moon Bay’s July 4 fireworks have been intermittent since 2006. And Oakland has canceled its pyrotechnics several times since 2007.

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National sales of display fireworks — those used by professionals — illustrate the trend. In 2002, more than 64 million pounds were sold. Last year, that figure stood at just 22 million, according to the American Pyrotechnics Association. “The number of fireworks shows has gone down in the past few years,� said Nitzan, whose work included the 75th Anniversary of the Golden Gate Bridge in May. “Some municipalities were harder hit than others.

‘It’s 18 hours of hard work, 15 to 20 minutes of “Wow,� then another two hours of hard work. It’s a labor of love — for us at least.’ – Jeff Hoover, fireworks crew member “Things are pretty well flat right now. I think the term is ‘Flat is the new growth,’� he said. But, he added optimistically: “They’ll come back.� It’s unlikely they would ever go away, given their enduring popularity. Fireworks were invented centuries ago in China, where 90 percent of the world’s fireworks are pro-

duced today. By the Renaissance, Italians and Germans were enthusiastically manufacturing them. Newly minted Americans celebrated their first Independence Day in 1777 with fireworks, several newspapers reported at the time. Despite the recent decline, Californiabased Pyro Spectaculars, which produces the Shoreline fireworks shows, still organizes upwards of 70 Independence Day events from Monterey to Santa Rosa, according to Jeff Thomas, the company’s Greater Bay Area show producer. And right now it’s crunch time. “This is Christmas for Santa Claus — the high-pressure moment,� Thomas said. The smaller shows cost $15,000 or more and require a half-dozen workers; larger shows cost between $50,000 and $100,000 and employ 10 to 15 staff members, he said. In charge of each show is a licensed operator, such as Nitzan. In addition to hiring staff, the operator is responsible for ensuring safety, from transporting the fireworks to preventing security breaches on the night of the event. Operators coordinate their work with various governmental agencies and private organizations involved in the event.

Cover Story

Courtesy of Katharine Saunders

Dan Nitzan’s crew sets ups the wooden boxes from which the fireworks will launch prior to the 2008 Shoreline show.

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From lower right, Sarah Nitzan, Laura Park and others hold cylinders in place while sand is poured and packed around them. The cylinders, called “guns,� hold the aerial shells. works.� Nitzan’s favorite firework is called the “kamuro.� “‘Kamuro’ is a Japanese word for a boy’s haircut. But more importantly, these are slow-dripping shells. ... They hover, and they glitter, and they take forever,� he said. Manufacturers attach paper stock to the “stars� — the nuggets within the aerial shell that are thrown outward when the shell explodes and burn as they fall, creating the brilliant streaks of color the audience sees. The wind carries the kamuro’s paper-attached-stars, helping them to float. (See sidebar on the anatomy of an aerial shell on page 18.)

hough the dazzling, arcing displays convey a certain effortlessness, the work involved in setting them up is anything but. Camaraderie brings the Shoreline crew back together every year, though, the members said. “It becomes that yearly family thing,� Shawn Hoover said. “Some meet for Christmas; we do the Shoreline fireworks. We are 100 percent lucky, but don’t kid yourself — it’s hard work.� Jeff Hoover and Nitzan, both Palo Alto High School graduates, have been working together on fireworks for nearly 30 years.

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(continued on next page)

Courtesy of Katharine Saunders

He listens — over and over — to get the sequence and timing of each explosion just right. “My family has endured hearing ‘Stars and Stripes (Forever)’ too many times, I’m afraid,� said Nitzan, who by day is founder and president of a video-transmission equipment manufacturer. Nitzan maps out the choreography and assigns a cue number to the launch of each shell. “I’m going to have a study of white shells here. ... I’m going to have rising tails over n some ways, launching fireworks has here,� he said, recounting his planning progotten safer over the years, Thomas cess. said. Loaded into cylinders known as To make sure the audience doesn’t leave “guns,� the aerial shells, as fireworks are disappointed, Nitzan likes to tease spectacalled, used to be set tors by building up the off by hand using a end of each song — a road flare. If a shell technique he calls his was defective, an ac- ‘American audiences have “signature.� cident could occur. “I love false finales. a very short attention span. Nitzan has one faI love to make the auAnd so we’re doing vorite fireworks rule dience think, ‘Well, blockbuster here, make of thumb: “We don’t maybe this wasn’t as put anything above a big as last year,’� he no mistake about it.’ gun that we want to said. “But we’re not – Dan Nitzan, licensed done yet.� keep.� fireworks operator More recently, fireIn other parts of the works are set off reworld, audiences are motely in one of two ways: using a nail accustomed to different styles of pyrotechboard, wires and electricity from a battery; nics. In Europe, fireworks shows are more or by computer. “dainty,� Nitzan said. “It moves us further away from the explo“They’re a little volley of this and a sions and gives us a lot better opportunity pause and little more of that and a pause,� for timing and design when working with he said. music,� Thomas said of remote ignition. But Americans? They like volume. For the Golden Gate Bridge celebration, “American audiences have a very short which Thomas produced, the sequence of attention span. And so we’re doing blockthe fireworks was programmed into a com- buster here, make no mistake about it,� puter, which launched them in synchronic- Nitzan said. ity with the music. The style isn’t so much artistic as, well, The Shoreline show is fired using a nail bombastic. The key to a successful show is board. A person touches a metal stylus to a sending up a lot of shells, he said. metal contact point, relaying via wire the When the finale comes, it’s one thing afelectric signal that ignites the firework’s ter another. fuse. The board is set some 135 feet away “When you’re ready to do the grand finafrom the shells. le, you don’t want the audience to mistake Occasionally, the signals will fail, despite it for the end. This is your cue to get in your the checking and re-checking of wires prior car and go home, right? So we just let all to the show. But with hundreds of shells hell break loose out there,� he said. filling the sky during the 20 minutes, the But shows do also include surprises of a audience rarely, if ever, notices, the orga- less-apocalyptic nature. nizers said. Over the years, the biggest trend in fireOf course, Nitzan notices. He designs the works has been the invention of shells that display each year and knows the type and burst into particular shapes: cubes, Saturns, timing of every firework. Choreographing hearts, bow ties. the show starts weeks in advance, after the The smiley face was an instant hit. San Francisco Symphony sends him an “It’s a crowd pleaser. You try to pick the MP3 of the songs that will be played. Usu- right moments� in the music to launch it, ally, there are three pieces. Thomas said. “That element of surprise

Courtesy of Katharine Saunders

Nitzan deals with nine groups, from the Federal Aviation Administration to the Shoreline Golf Links, where the pyrotechnics are launched. It can get a little tricky. “If they don’t have their security (measures) together, if they don’t have the fire safety set up correctly, then I have a safety issue,� Nitzan said. “So, my job is to influence people who don’t work for me, to make sure they do what they need to do so everything goes off as planned.�

Andrew Nizamian, left, and Dan Nitzan sort aerial shells by design and size prior to loading them into the guns on July 4, 2009. ĂœĂœĂœÂ°*>Â?ÂœÂ?ĂŒÂœ"˜Â?ˆ˜i°VÂœÂ“ĂŠUĂŠ*>Â?ÂœĂŠÂ?ĂŒÂœĂŠ7iiÂŽÂ?ÞÊUĂŠĂ•Â˜iÊә]ÊÓä£ÓÊU Page 17

Cover Story

The anatomy of fireworks Gunpowder, metal salts produce the displays that make audiences go ‘Wow’

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hey have names like “dahlia,â€? “peonyâ€? and “chrysanthemum,â€? but as everyone knows, professional-grade fireworks are anything but genteel. Those sparkling, glittering displays that audiences “oohâ€? and “ahhâ€? over are composed of gunpowder and metal salts. Called “aerial shells,â€? they are typically spherical, with diameters ranging from 2 inches to 10 inches, according to Dan Nitzan, a Palo Alto licensed fireworks operator. They’re made of papier-mâchĂŠ and fired out of pipes, also called “guns.â€? Each shell undergoes two explosions. The first bag of gunpowder is attached to the exterior of the shell and, when ignited, provides the liftoff. The explosion also lights a delay fuse leading to the center of the shell, where a second bag of powder sits. That gunpowder bursts the shell 3 to 5 seconds later, when it’s 300 feet to 1,200 feet in the air. The falling colors that the audience sees are burning “starsâ€? — dense nuggets of metal salts mixed with fuel, packed into the shell. The metals each burn a different color, Nitzan said. Strontium, for example, glows red, the color of a road flare. Sometimes, fireworks change colors midair: The initial burst of blue turns red as the stars travel outward. Nitzan likens the structure of those stars to the candy

Jawbreakers. “You have one color of candy, and that’s surrounding another color of candy. Same idea,� he said. “So you have red material composition, and they put blue composition around that. When the star bursts, each star is blue and slowly as it burns down to the core, it becomes red.� To make the fireworks that explode into shapes such as Saturns, smiley faces and hearts, the stars are laid out in the shells in exactly those shapes. “That cube shell actually has stars lined up in a cube orientation inside the shell, and the rest of the material is inert — rice hulls, typically,� Nitzan said. “The simplest example might be a ring shell, where the northern and southern hemisphere of the shell are inert material, and the equator is live stars.� In addition to fireworks of varying shapes, the industry has seen the advent of “cake� fireworks. Basically a fireworks show in a box, they contain a hundred small cardboard tubes, preloaded with shells, Nitzan said. The shower of pyrotechnics spouting from the deck of the Golden Gate Bridge for its 75th anniversary in May were cake products. “You light one end, and it has a delay fuse that lights them one at a time,� he said. “You can get some very nice effects.� N —Jocelyn Dong

Aerial shell

Q&A with Dan Nitzan What’s the most unusual fireworks job you’ve done? Scatterings at sea. We do human remains. Go figure. We put the human remains in the gun with the fireworks and send them up. What makes a good fireworks show? If you want a really good show, it comes mainly down to raw product. Where do you keep the fireworks? We store our product in a place that you will never find, in the middle of nowhere. That’s a good thing to not know about. What’s on the Homeland Security form? All of my crew members have to fill out something for the Department of Homeland Security. Of all of these questions, my personal favorite is: “Are you a fugitive from justice?�

1 Fuse Lit by an electrical charge

2 Lift charge Gunpowder explodes, launching shell and lighting delay fuse

3 Delay fuse Burns as shell shoots skyward and ignites bursting charge after 3 to 5 seconds

4 Bursting charge Gunpowder explodes, igniting the surrounding “starsâ€? and shattering the papier-mâchĂŠ shell

5 Stars Pellets made of metal salts and a fuel burn, creating vibrant colors as they fall

Worst fireworks mishap you’ve experienced? It was a very long time ago. A shell blew up in the bottom of a gun, scattering neighboring guns all over place and blowing up the road flare the person firing was using. So we quickly reassembled the equipment and continued on with the show, once we got everything back into position. Extra adventure! Where’s the best place to watch a fireworks show from? Many people like to go up into the hills to watch all the fireworks shows in the Bay Area. Sorry, guys — wrong. The best place to watch the fireworks is directly underneath them. They’re going from horizon to horizon. You can hear the lift charge, smell the powder. ... It’s right there. Advice for seeing the Shoreline fireworks on June 30 (Celebrate America) or July 4? Parking is always difficult for liability reasons. The local businesses don’t like to have the public in their parking lots. Some people tend to bring their own fireworks — a really bad idea. ... That’s why the golf course is such a good place to watch from. People bring their lawn chairs and picnic blankets and food. ... I can’t make enough recommendations to come in via bicycle. Do not drive in. N

Fireworks

(continued from previous page)

Courtesy of Katharine Saunders

Courtesy of Katharine Saunders

It all started when Nitzan recruited Hoover for a July 4 show at the Tanforan Shopping Center in San Bruno. “I was able-bodied and over 18. He said, ‘Come on, let’s go.’ So I got in a car with him, and we drove off,� Hoover said. Little did Hoover know that Nitzan was not planning to do the show with him. “He said, ‘Here’s your crew; go do it.’� These days, Hoover is Nitzan’s most regular staff member, working three or four shows a year with him. Hoover could have obtained his operator’s license, but then he’d be in charge of his own shows, without Nitzan. “Fact of the matter is ... I want to go work with my buddy,� said Hoover, who praises Nitzan’s attention to safety and detail. Together, they’ve mounted the Shoreline show since its inception in 1984. Every July 3, the crew trucks in the materials to Shoreline Golf Links, first setting up rows of 8-foot-long wooden boxes that hold the guns. “So the day before the fireworks show, we’re out there, placing guns, putting plastic cover over them, and then dumping sand in on top of them,� Nitzan said. “Sand is a wonderful material because it’s so heavy, and it absorbs the concussions associated with these guns. ... You want something very massive around the guns so you can absorb any problems that occur.� That’s the “dirty and grimy� part of set

Jeff Hoover and Dan Nitzan check electrical continuity on the nail board, which is connected by wires to the aerial shells about 135 feet away, on July 4, 2009.

Aerial shells of varying sizes await wiring before they’re placed inside guns on the Shoreline Golf Links on July 4, 2008.

up, Shawn Hoover said — holding the guns firmly in place and at the right angle as hundreds of pounds of sand are poured and packed around them. The initial set-up can take up to eight hours. There aren’t any explosives on the field until the day of the show. After the shells are sorted by type, each is placed in its designated gun and wired so it’s connected to the nail board. The guns are capped with aluminum foil to protect the shells until

they’re fired. As showtime approaches, the wires are checked and rechecked. With all the parts in place, the crew takes a break for its own barbecue and to wait for sunset. Finally, the symphony concert starts, and soon, it’s fireworks time. From the amphitheater’s backstage, the tech director calls out cue numbers via radio transmission for each firework launch. His voice booms from loudspeakers set up on the darkened

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golf course: “175! 176!� Shawn Hoover makes sure to she gets to do some of the firing, touching the stylus to the nail board and hearing the “fwoop� as the shell takes off skyward. “If I’ve worked that hard to wire the show, I shoot the ones I’ve wired,� she said. “That’s full circle.� It’s a magical moment for all, they say. (continued on next page)

Cover Story

Windrider brings award-winning, independent films along with the stars and filmmakers who create them.

This year, we are pleased to welcome actor Josh Lucas to the forum. Courtesy of Katharine Saunders

Thursday, July 12 - Rising From Ashes “Work in Progress� screening Friday, July 13 - The Hammer Saturday, July 14 - Red Dog At the M-A Performing Arts Center Visit windriderbayarea.org for info

Inspirations a guide to the spiritual community FIRST CONGREGATIONAL CHURCH, UCC £™nxĂŠÂœĂ•ÂˆĂƒĂŠ,Âœ>`]ĂŠ*>Â?ÂœĂŠÂ?ĂŒÂœĂŠUĂŠÂ­ĂˆxäŽÊnxĂˆÂ‡ĂˆĂˆĂˆĂ“ĂŠUĂŠĂœĂœĂœÂ°vVVÂŤ>Â°ÂœĂ€}ĂŠ -Ă•Â˜`>ÞÊ7ÂœĂ€ĂƒÂ…ÂˆÂŤĂŠ>ĂŒĂŠÂŁĂ¤\ääÊ>°“°ÊUĂŠ Â…Ă•Ă€VÂ…ĂŠ-V…œœÂ?ĂŠ>ĂŒĂŠÂŁĂ¤\ääÊ>°“°

10:00 a.m. This Sunday A Different Kind of Freedom Rev. David Howell preaching

An Open and Affirming Congregation of the United Church of Christ Courtesy of Katharine Saunders

At top: On the Shoreline Golf Links, the 2011 show is all set: fireworks have been loaded into wooden boxes, the control board has been wired, and the radio receiver and speaker are set to broadcast cues from the amphitheater. Above: Embers fall as an aerial shell bursts from its gun last July 4. (continued from previous page)

“As a mom, it’s nice to get out and do something incredibly interesting and entertaining,� she said. “It’s exciting. The shells are beautiful. And every show seems like it’s the best one.� Being right under the bursting fireworks carries with it a power that can’t be beat, Jeff Hoover said. “There’s an interesting blend of calm and excitement,� he said. “You’re watching these soaring

things go up in the air, feeling the explosions. “When it goes perfectly, the shells go up and hit their mark. There’s a sense of a job well done — not just for you, but it’s a public job well done. ... Other people got to enjoy it.� Thomas said the audiences’ joy motivates him as he produces the dozens of shows every year. “The magic feeling that everybody has — it’s incredible,� he said.

Inspirations is a resource for ongoing religious services and special events. To inquire about or to reserve space in Inspirations, please contact Blanca Yoc at 223-6596 or email byoc@paweekly.com

(continued on page 21)

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ON YOUR MARK ‌ GET SET ‌ VOTE! In this year's Best of we cheer the Olympian businesses that champion the Palo Alto area -- the Peninsula's gold-medal LANE 1 restaurants, retailers and services. RESTAURANTS Best Ambiance Best Bar/Lounge Best California Cuisine Best Chinese Restaurant Best Coffee House Best Dining With Kids Best French Restaurant Best Fusion Restaurant Best Indian Restaurant Best Italian Restaurant Best Latin American Cuisine Best Meal Under $20 Best Mediterranean Restaurant Best Mexican Restaurant Best New Restaurant Best Outdoor Dining Best Restaurant To Splurge Best Romantic Restaurant Best Solo Dining Best Sports Bar Best Sunday Brunch Best Sushi/Japanese Restaurant Best Thai ReStaurant Best Vegetarian/Vegan Cuisine Best Wine Bar

LANE 3

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LANE 2

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WE TOOK A VOTE: 2011

LANE 4

Three-Time Winner: Best Seafood

ÂŽ

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Cover Story

Fireworks

(continued from page 19)

bomb bursting in air. “It’s very animated,� Nitzan said. “There’s a lot of excitement going on, you know. These are explosions after all.� N Editor Jocelyn Dong can be emailed at jdong@paweekly.com. Staff Writer Gennady Sheyner contributed to this article. For a listing of local Independence Day activities, see the roundup of events in today’s Arts & Entertainment section. About the cover: From left, Devin Hoover, Shannon Rost, Shawn Hoover and Nik Rost prepare to launch the fireworks at Shoreline last July 4. Photographs courtesy of Katharine Saunders; composition by Shannon Corey.

Courtesy of Katharine Saunders

Just how greatly people anticipate that feeling was evident when fog threatened to derail viewing of the Golden Gate Bridge show in May. Spectators at an overlook point in San Francisco’s Sunset District grumbled and shook their heads when they saw a fog bank roll across the horizon, obscuring the first celebratory flares, one eyewitness reported. Their disappointment didn’t last long, though. Within minutes, the sky exploded with neon lights, bursting spheres, golden comets and flashing shards that seemed to freeze midair before plummeting through the fog and into the bay. By the time show reached its cre-

scendo, the audience was gasping, clapping and singing “Happy Birthday� to the popular landmark. For Nitzan, pyrotechnic work is “a privilege.� He likens it to Steve Jobs’ famed ability to cast a spell on people, known as his “reality distortion field.� “This is my answer to the realitydistortion field. I get to take an audience and take them on an adventure,� he said. “Fireworks is a unique entertainment form in that it does not require people to know any particular language. It doesn’t appeal to one age group over another. It can appeal to families, people of all ages. Safety concerns, Homeland Security paperwork and hard labor aside, the fun of fireworks to Nitzan is as visceral as the whiz, bang and pop of each

Dan Nitzan watches the 2008 fireworks show unfold.

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Book Talk KEPLER’S NEWS ... As part of the ongoing effort to open a new chapter at Kepler’s Books, the iconic Menlo Park bookstore will close for six weeks starting July 1. Plans are to use the downtime to remodel the store, located at 1010 El Camino Real, said spokesman Patrick Corman. Look for a new layout and fresh inventory when the store reopens. Staff will also have new computer systems and training, according to keplers2020.com. Author readings scheduled for July will be relocated or postponed if possible, otherwise the store might open its doors briefly for specific events, the website said. Meanwhile, the store will continue to sell books online. Transition team leader Praveen Madan, a partner of Booksmith in San Francisco and Berkeley Arts and Letters, announced a fundraising campaign in May that aimed to raise $1 million by the end of summer. So far donors have contributed $650,000. The long-term goal is to create a for-profit, communityowned bookstore alongside a nonprofit organization that offers an expanded slate of author events, workshops, and other resources. With that in mind, the transition team set about eliminating about $1 million in old debt and streamlining operations so that the bookstore is already making a small profit, according to Madan. MEET THE AUTHORS ... Upcoming authors at Books Inc. at Town & Country Village in Palo Alto include Deborah Harkness, “Shadow of Night� (July 11, 7 p.m., $25 ticket includes copy of book); and Emily Jeanne Miller, “Brand New Human Being� (July 17, 7 p.m., at the Palo Alto Library Downtown branch, 270 Forest Ave., Palo Alto). And at Books, Inc., at 301 Castro St., Mountain View: Susan Stone Belton, “Real Parents, Real Kids, Real Talk� (June 30, 1 p.m.) and Maria Duenas, “The Time in Between� (July 19, 7 p.m.). Information: www.booksinc. net.

Items for Book Talk may be sent to Associate Editor Carol Blitzer, Palo Alto Weekly, P.O Box 1610, Palo Alto, CA 93202 or emailed to cblitzer@ paweekly.com by the last Friday of the month.

Title Pages A monthly section on local books and authors

S

tellar new books for kids and families inspire laughter, creativity, activity, thought and yes, even a few tears. But it’s all for the best cause: reading! “How to Babysit a Grandpa� by Jean Reagan; Knopf; ages 4-8; $17 Here’s a fresh, humorous take on grandparents as babysitters: Flip the roles so the kid takes care of Grandpa. “When it’s sunny, sunscreen up — especially the top of his head.� Ha! And on a walk, “If there’s a puddle or a sprinkler, show him what to do,� with an illustration of Grandpa and the little guy happily jumping into water. “How to Babysit a Grandpa� is sure to be a hit with multiple generations.

and a recipe for stone soup, as well as a helpful list of resources. Though directed at schools, families will find “Our School Garden� useful and fun. “Discover More: How To d ay’s Technology Really Works� by Clive Gifford; Scholastic; ages 9-13; $16 Kids will discover much to study in this fascinating digest of how things work, an illustrated, fact-filled tome that explains the history, technology

derwall; he wants to be a scientist and study the moon, not a CEO. But can he say no to a life of riches? Though the novel’s ending is unsurprising, the journey is well worth the read. “Caddy’s World� by Hilary McKay; McElderry/Simon & Schuster; ages 10 and up; $17 Entering Caddy’s world is like watching a wacky British sitcom starring a family of eccentric artists who do the goofiest things in the most matter-of-fact

Let’s read aloud this summer!

Family summer reading for ages 4 to 94 by Debbie Duncan

“Happy Like Soccer� by Maribeth Boelts, illustrated by Lauren Castillo; Candlewick; ages 4-8; $16 City girl Sierra is thrilled to be chosen for a suburban soccer team that plays on “fields with no holes, and real goals, not two garbage cans shoved together.� But she’s also sad that her auntie cannot get away from her restaurant job to watch Sierra’s Saturday games. “Every girl has someone there but me.� Any kid who plays on a sports team will recognize Sierra and root for her to win on and off the soccer field. Her story is illustrated by ink and watercolor paintings that jump off the page. “Our School Garden� by Rick Swann, illustrated by Christy Hale; Readers to Eaters; ages 4-12; $18 Palo Alto writer and artist Christy Hale provides vibrant mixed-media illustrations for this inspirational book showing the many benefits of a school garden. There is so much here: science, poetry, history, math, English ... plus riddles

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and workings behind smartphones, computers, robots, camcorders, engines and motors, cars, airplanes, space exploration, sports shoes, roller coasters, 3-D, clean energy generation and more. “Discover More: How Today’s Technology Really Works� also includes a glossary and a digital companion book. “The Moon Over High Street� by Natalie Babbitt; Scholastic; ages 8-12; $16 Though the reader doesn’t learn until page 93 that this charming book is set in 1965, it’s clear from the outset that the characters are not living in a cell phone/ computer/organized-activitiesfor-kids world. The women’s movement also hasn’t hit Midville yet, or at least had any effect on the town’s millionaire. Mr. Boulderwall, facing a future without a male heir to his factory and fortune, latches onto a young Midville visitor, Joe, whose parents have died but who is quite content with the care given to him by Gran and Aunt Myra. Joe has no interest in being adopted by Mr. Boul-

way. In this prequel to five awardwinning books about the Casson family, we meet Caddy’s three best friends, who are just as crazy as Caddy’s parents and siblings, and as lovable. Yet they are also typical 12-yearolds: There’s Alison, who radiates negativity; Ruby, book smart and tech savvy; Beth, who’s unhappy with her body and tries to do something about it; and Caddy, “the bravest of the brave.� They build a hangout in a stable to deal with the changes that inevitably come from being 12. Good thing, especially when Caddy is called upon to make the rescue of her life. “Wonder� by R.J. Oakacui; Knopf; ages 8-12; $16 This is one of those books for the ages — all ages, an instant classic. If you’ve heard about “Wonder,� you may already know it’s a novel about a 10-year-old boy with severe facial deformities. As Augie admits on the first page: “... ordinary kids don’t make other ordinary kids run away screaming in playgrounds.� Yet the story of this funny, smart, sensitive boy’s year in fifth grade

(his first outside of homeschooling) is told not just from his point of view, but also from those whose lives he touches and affects deeply, including his sister, his sister’s friend and boyfriend, and August’s school friends. “Wonder� is a beautifully written, un-put-downable book that challenges assumptions, invites discussion, and makes a perfect summer family read-aloud. “Fenway Fever� by John H. Ritter; Philomel/Penguin; ages 10-14; $17 The best sports novels don’t require an intimate knowledge of the specific sport, because they’re really about life. In fact, “Fenway Fever� could confuse young people especially knowledgeable about the 2012 Red Sox, as this is a fictional team, led by eccentric pitcher Billee Orbitt, supposedly playing for Boston during Fenway Park’s 100th ann iver sa r y year. Billee’s No. 1 fan is 12-yearold “Stats� Pagano, a small-statured statistical genius who lives for his beloved Sox. Stats’ family runs a hot dog stand outside the park, but Pops is in danger of having to sell the business to pay old medical bills. Billee is also in trouble. Has the Curse, the legendary bad energy, returned to Fenway? Can Stats and Billee’s summer solstice mission restore balance to the park? The friendship between Stats and Billee, two characters “who are only just sort of normal and also sort of weird,� is fanciful and touching. Pops’ relationship with his sons, Stats and 15-year-old shortstop phenom Mark, is completely realistic. And the ending of “Fenway Fever� will warm even a Yankee fan’s heart. N Debbie Duncan of Stanford is the author of an award-winning eBook, “Caller Number Nine.� She has reviewed children’s books for the Weekly since 1997. Her complete reviews are at www.debbieduncan.com.

Title Pages NOTICE OF PUBLIC HEARING of the City of Palo Alto Architectural Review Board (ARB)

Chronicling a city Matt Bowling’s collection of essays on Palo Alto richly depicts growth, tensions, celebrations by Jocelyn Dong “Palo Alto Remembered: Stories from a city’s past,� by Matt Bowling; Palo Alto Historical Association, 205 pp.; $25 any are the annals of life in Palo Alto. One of the first comprehensive histories, published in 1939 when the city was just 45 years old, was written by Dallas Wood, former editor of the Palo Alto Times. Since then, an illustrated, limited edition and several centennial publications have further examined the explorers’ settlement turned Silicon Valley hub, including Ward Winslow’s authoritative 1994 “Palo Alto: A centennial history.� This summer, historian and former second-grade teacher Matt Bowling’s “Palo Alto Remembered: Stories from a city’s past� joins the collection. But as the subtitle suggests, rather than a chronological survey of the town’s growth, Bowling’s book highlights some of the city’s most interesting people, places and turning points. As local historian Steve Staiger writes in the book’s foreword: “It is a collection of tasty treats rather than a full-course meal.� In 43 detailed vignettes, originally published as columns in the Palo Alto Daily News, Bowling covers events ranging from the international to the distinctly down home. He revisits the Beatles’ overnight stay at the Cabana Hotel (now the Crowne Plaza Cabana), the birth in 1951 of the Stanford Industrial Park (now the Stanford Research Park) and the fight over the Winter Club (now the Winter Lodge). The chapters are grouped into five sections: Landmarks, Long Ago, Changing Times, Conflicts and Citizens. Each essay is richly supplemented by historical photographs from archives of the Palo Alto Historical Association, which published the book, as well as from copyright-free sources, Bowling himself and others. Original newspaper articles and leaflets give readers a flavor of the time. A 1950 flier for the Palo Alto Drive-In Theatre shows a Clark Gable flick paired in a double feature with “The Boy with the Green Hair.� Readers looking at a copy of a letter by Police Chief Jim Zurcher, written in 1972, will note that Zurcher humorously refers to himself, in the language of student protesters, as “Super-Pig.� Throughout, Bowling writes about the city with affection. In one story, he dwells on the innocent patriotism that characterized Palo Altans’ attitudes around the turn of the 20th century. It could be seen in the citywide Independence Day party, which started at dawn with the singing of the national anthem and continued through till 1 a.m., with greased-pig chases, a mile-long parade, fireworks and contests such as “Homeliest Woman on the Grounds.� In another essay, he remembers the stretch of El Camino Real in south Palo Alto that was known from the 1950s through the 1970s as “Restaurant Row.� There, diners enjoyed international cuisine at Rick’s Swiss Chalet, Ming’s (Chinese), Rudolpho’s (Italian) and Villa Lafayette (French). Despite Bowling’s fondness for Palo Alto, he doesn’t gloss over the tensions and shame in Palo Alto’s past. He writes about the origins of Dinah’s Shack, whose “Mammy� logo and black waitstaff

9 A.M., Thursday, July 12, 2012 Downtown Library, Community Room, 270 Forest Avenue, Palo Alto, CA. Go to the Development Center at 285 Hamilton Avenue to review ďŹ led documents; contact Diana Tamale for information regarding business hours at 650.329.2144. 264 Lytton Avenue [12PLN-00252]: Request by Palo Alto Public Works Engineering for Architectural Review of landscape improvements and new amenities for an existing park, Cogswell Plaza. Zone: PF. Environmental Assessment: Exempt from the provisions of the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) per CEQA Guidelines Section 15304.

M

50 El Camino Real [12PLN-00186]: Request by Huiwen Hsiao on behalf of The Board of Trustees of the Leland Stanford Junior University for preliminary Architectural Review of a new 70 room, three story, 51,167 square foot building on a vacant site adjacent to the Ronald McDonald House to expand the program. Zone District: CC(L). Environmental Assessment: Preliminary Reviews are not considered a project under the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA).

uncomfortably echoed the Antebellum South. He notes in a chapter about the internment of Palo Alto’s Japanese-American residents that in June 1942 — 70 years ago this month — “not a single Japanese American was left in Palo Alto. “Few Palo Altans protested or seriously questioned the orders of their government. The Times called the policy the ‘lesser of two evils,’� he writes. Bowling also recalls that the Palo Alto Chamber of Commerce in 1920 “passed a resolution calling for a ‘segregated district for the Oriental and colored people of the city.’� Although the plan never came to fruition, mid-century housing developments included clauses prohibiting people who were not “wholly of white Caucasian race� from occupying homes — unless they were servants of the households, he writes. Perhaps one of the most refreshing aspects of Bowling’s storytelling is the care he takes to place local events in a broader context. He begins his chapter on life during World War II by discussing how citizens throughout the U.S. rallied to support the war effort. And in writing about the University Avenue train station, he recaps trends in national transportation to explain the decline of rail travel at the time. Staiger, again in his foreword, credits Bowling with his attention to the big picture: “All too often local history writers fail to make the association between the lives of the people in their community to what was happening on the larger stage of state, national or international events. “Matt and his stories present some of those links.� For those who have a glancing familiarity with Palo Alto’s history — but lack intimate knowledge of the factors at play in the contentious 1979 closure of Cubberley High School, for example, or the origins of the Bol Park donkeys — “Palo Alto Remembered� will serve as an enjoyable primer. Bowling brings to life the many passions that have stirred the city and its residents over the past 118 years and, in doing so, even explains the origins of undercurrents that still influence life in Palo Alto today. N “Palo Alto Remembered� is available at Books, Inc.; Bell’s Books; Kepler’s; and Village Stationers in Palo Alto. Editor Jocelyn Dong can be emailed at jdong@ paweekly.com.

278 University Avenue [12PLN-00155]: Request by The Hayes Group, on behalf of 278 University Investors, LLC, for minor Architectural Review of alternative public sidewalk materials in front of the new building. Zone District: CD-C(GF)(P). Environmental Assessment: Exempt from the provisions of the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA). Amy French Manager of Current Planning

NOTICE OF A PUBLIC MEETING of the Palo Alto Planning & Transportation Commission

Please be advised the Planning and Transportation Commission (P&TC) shall conduct a public meeting at 6:00 PM, Wednesday, July 11, 2012 in the Council Chambers, Ground Floor, Civic Center, Palo Alto, California. Any interested persons may appear and be heard on these items. Staff reports for agendized items are available via the City’s main website at www.cityofpaloalto.org and also at the Planning Division Front Desk, 5th Floor, City Hall, after 2:00 PM on the Friday preceding the meeting date. Copies will be made available at the Development Center should City Hall be closed on the 9/80 Friday. NEW BUSINESS. Public Hearing: 1.

California Avenue – Transit Hub Corridor Streetscape Improvements Project: Recommendation Regarding the California Avenue Transit Hub Corridor Streetscape Project including design status, location of proposed sidewalk widening opportunities, and plaza design.

Questions. For any questions regarding the above items, please contact the Planning Department at (650) 329-2441. The ďŹ les relating to these items are available for inspection weekdays between the hours of 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM. This public meeting is televised live on Government Access Channel 26. ADA. The City of Palo Alto does not discriminate against individuals with disabilities. To request accommodations to access City facilities, services or programs, to participate at public meetings, or to learn more about the City’s compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA), please contact the City’s ADA Coordinator at 650.329.2550 (voice) or by e-mailing ada@cityofpaloalto.org. *** Curtis Williams, Director of Planning and Community Environment

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Arts & Entertainment

BRINGING ON THE HITS

by Rebecca Wallace

IRVING BERLIN.

LEONARD BERNSTEIN.

GEORGE GERSHWIN.

W

hen your music is part jazz, part cabaret and part Broadway, and you get booked to play a Jewish community center, how do you choose a program theme? For singer Wesla Whitfield and pianist Michael Greensill, the choice was obvious: the Russian Jewish influences on the Great American Songbook. The only problem, Whitfield said cheerfully, is that “we have way too much material.� Indeed. Last century, writers from Russian Jewish families played a pivotal role in shaping American pop music. Irving Berlin, to name one, comes up twice on NPR’s top-100 list of the most significant American music of the 20th century (“Alexander’s Ragtime Band� and “White Christmas�). He also made the number-five spot on the American Film Institute’s top 100 movie songs of all time (“White Christmas� again). And Berlin’s cohorts were numerous: George and Ira Gershwin, Richard Rodgers and Leonard Bernstein, to name a few. For their concert in Palo Alto on July 15, Whitfield and Greensill are going through their cornucopia of songs by these composers and lyricists. As of last week they still hadn’t narrowed down their list of songs to a manageable program. Whitfield and Greensill, longtime San Francisco performers (and spouses) who recently moved to Napa County, have been researching the roots of these icons. “I was curious what they were listening to. What sort of music did they hear from their parents and grandparents in Russia that translated into what became popular song over here? � Greensill said. He imagines the composers heard a mix of Jewish cantorial singing, with its many minor keys; and classical music including works by Tschaikovsky. “It’s a very melodic era of classical music,� Greensill said. “When

Bay Area singer Wesla Whitfield.

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Musical couple explores the many iconic American songs that came from the Russian Jewish community

Married musicians Michael Greensill and Wesla Whitfield blend his “swinging sensibility� with her classical training, he says. you think of all the themes of ‘The Nutcracker,’ they’re almost like popular songs.� Whitfield said many of the composers began writing songs to make a living. Berlin, for example, worked at a restaurant. When he saw that a song about another restaurant was popular, he decided to pen one about his own workplace, Whitfield said. “He was a great marketing guy and remained so all his life.� Another common thread that runs through the standards from the Great American Songbook is their versatility, Greensill said. “These songs are incredibly malleable. You can do them slow, fast, Latin; stretch them out, scrunch them up. You can do anything to make them your own.� For decades, Whitfield and Greensill have been putting their own stamp on the songs they love together. They met in the early ‘80s when Whitfield, who had been singing in San Francisco since 1968, was seeking a new pianist. “I became her arranger and piano player,� Greensill said. “One thing led to another.� Greensill is a seasoned jazz musician who has taught at the Stanford Jazz Workshop and performs regularly with his trio. Whitfield’s niche is harder to pin down, which is how she likes it. She’s a classically trained soprano equally comfortable with movie songs, show tunes and

jazz, and has sung with the San Francisco Symphony and on “A Prairie Home Companion.� “We like to think of her as a song stylist,� Greensill says. Greensill likens his partnership with Whitfield to the marriage of jazz and American popular song. “It’s jazz that’s kept those songs alive,� he says. A Cole Porter song, for instance, may now be less known for the Broadway show it was originally written for, and more famed for the way Ella Fitzgerald later sang it. Meanwhile, Greensill says Whitfield has given him more appreciation for the lyrics and stories behind songs, while he’s brought her “a swinging sensibility.�

Whitfield agrees the partnership isn’t bad. “The first 30 years have been OK,� she said, laughing. Whitfield, who was left paralyzed from the waist down by a 1977 random shooting, performs sometimes from her wheelchair and sometimes from a stool to which her husband matter-offactly carries her. The wheelchair doesn’t get mentioned much in reviews anymore. In her many positive write-ups, critics seem more interested in her skilled interpretations of the songs she loves. In a review of a 2009 concert, San Francisco Chronicle writer David Wiegand praised “the Whitfield magic�: precise phrasing; a clear, lovely voice; and the artist’s understanding that “good singing is also good storytelling.� Visitors to Whitfield’s website, weslawhitfield.com, can see for themselves by watching a 2011 video of her take on the Alan Block-Donn Hecht tune “Walkin’ After Midnight.� Whitfield’s version of the song made famous by Patsy Cline is wistful yet knowing. She is always in control of her instrument, singing with a confidence that needs no ornamentation. During an interview with the Weekly, Whitfield’s gentle speaking voice lights up when she’s asked how she approaches new songs. “I look at the printed music and see what the composer had in mind. From that I get clues of how it really should be phrased,� she said. “I look at where he put his punctuation and try to figure out what he wanted to be saying.� Above all, Whitfield makes her choices in interpreting a song with great care and respect for the original intent. “There’s always more than one way to interpret that semicolon. The most important thing you can do is think about it.� N What: Wesla Whitfield and Mike Greensill perform the concert “From Shtetl to Broadway: The Russian Jewish Influence on the Great American Songbook.� Where: Schultz Cultural Arts Hall, Oshman Family Jewish Community Center, 3921 Fabian Way, Palo Alto When: Sunday, July 15, at 7:30 p.m. Cost: Advance tickets are $30 general, $25 for JCC members and $23 for residents of the center’s Moldaw Family Residence. Tickets at the door are $35. Info: Go to paloaltojcc.org.

COMMUNITY MEETING Review the proposed landscape renovations for Eleanor Pardee Park Tuesday July 10, 2012, 6:30 PM Lucie Stern Center Community Room 1305 MiddleďŹ eld Road, Palo Alto, CA 94301 The City of Palo Alto seeks the community’s input on this proposed landscape renovation project. Email pwecips@cityofpaloalto.org for more information.

Meeting hosted by City of Palo Alto Public Works, (650) 617-3183 PALO ALTO CITY COUNCIL CIVIC CENTER, 250 HAMILTON AVENUE BROADCAST LIVE ON KZSU, FM 90.1 CABLECAST LIVE ON GOVERNMENT ACCESS CHANNEL 26 ********************************** THIS IS A SUMMARY OF COUNCIL AGENDA ITEMS. THE AGENDA WITH COMPLETE TITLES INCLUDING LEGAL DOCUMENTATION CAN BE VIEWED AT THE BELOW WEBPAGE: http://www.cityofpaloalto.org/knowzone/agendas/council.asp SPECIAL ORDERS OF THE DAY 1. Selection of Candidates to serve on the Architectural Review Board for two full terms and one unexpired term ending on September 30, 2015 2. Selection of Candidates to serve on the Planning and Transportation Commission for two terms ending on July 31, 2016 and one unexpired term ending on July 31, 2013 3. Selection of Candidates to serve on the Utilities Advisory Commission for three terms ending on June 30, 2015 CONSENT CALENDAR 4. Approval of Change Order Fifteen in the Amount of $278,710 to Flintco Construction for the Mitchell Park Library and Community Center Project ACTION ITEMS 5. Public Hearing: Discussion and Direction Regarding city Policy for the Use of Utility Substaion Sites, City Hall and Other City Property for Siting Wireless Communications Facilities (continued from 6/25/12) (Public Hearing portion closed) 6. Approval of a Resolution in Support of the Santa Clara Valley Water District’s Safe, Clean Water and Natural Flood Protection Plan (Plan) and Placement of the Plan on the November 2012 Ballot 7. Acceptance of the Long Range Facilities Plan for the RWQCP and Direction to Staff to Initiate a Biosolids Facility Plan 8. Energy/Compost Facility Action Plan Presentation; Approval of Amendment No.2 to Contract C11136602 with Alternative Resources, Inc. in the Amount of $290,224 for a Total Not to Exceed Amount of $517,582 for Assistance in Energy/Compost Facility Action Plan Implementation 9. Colleagues Memo- (ATTY) STANDING COMMITTEE MEETINGS The Finance Committee meeting will be held on July 3, 2012 at 6:00 PM to discuss: 1) Review of 3rd Quarter Financial Results, and 2) Cost of Services Study, Scope of Work, and Methodologies.

A&E DIGEST PALO ALTAN IN SORKIN’S ‘NEWSROOM’ Palo Alto native Amin El Gamal, an actor and student, is scheduled to appear in the third episode of television writer Aaron Sorkin’s latest project, “The Newsroom,� which premiered June 24 on HBO. Sorkin, the writer behind “The Social Network� and “The West Wing,� cast El Gamal after a direct audition. El Gamal will play the episode’s title character, “Amen,� an Egyptian reporter in the midst of the 2011 Egyptian revolution. This was an event that hit close to home for him in real life. “As an Egyptian-American, (I felt that) the revolution had a profound effect on my family and me,� El Gamal said in a press release. “I felt a responsibility to properly represent the incredible people who finally got a voice during those 18 days in Tahrir Square.� El Gamal, who began his acting career locally in Palo Alto High School’s Haymarket Theatre and the Palo Alto Children’s Theatre, said he hopes his performance will empower other young Egyptian-Americans and help those who struggle with their identity as he did. The episode is scheduled to air July 22.

The online guide to Palo Alto businesses

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Arts & Entertainment

Community celebrations Fourth of July festivities kindle the neighborhood spirit with fireworks, chili, parades and music by Maytal Mark

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Multimedia Advertising Sales Representative Embarcadero Media is a multimedia company with websites, email news digests (Express) and community newspapers on the Peninsula, in the East Bay and in Marin. We are the leader in community news and local advertising solutions in the markets we serve. More residents in our communities turn to our websites, email news digests and print media as the primary choice for local news and information. We are looking for an aggressive, sophisticated Outside Sales Representative for a prime display ad sales territory on the Peninsula. Experience in online, social media, search marketing, and print media sales is a plus. Familiarity with the advertising industry and selling solutions to local and regional businesses is required. We offer salary, commission, bonus plan, health benefits, paid time off and an environment where success and achievement is rewarded. Most importantly, the successful candidate must have a drive to be a top performer and enjoy working with clients who are looking to our company to provide them with cost effective and efficient advertising solutions. Consultative selling approaches are key to success in this position. If you have the passion to achieve great success in your career and believe you can contribute significantly to our leadership position in the market, please send your resume and a brief summary as to why you believe you are the right candidate for this outstanding opportunity. Qualified candidates will be contacted for an interview. Please submit your resume and cover letter to: Tom Zahiralis, Vice President Sales and Marketing tzahiralis@embarcaderopublishing.com

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hat does a chili cook-off have to do with social change? Ask some of the chefs at Palo Alto’s Mitchell Park this Fourth of July. Besides attracting people who just love to cook, the annual Summer Festival & Chili Cook-off has also drawn teams from local non-profits looking to get the word out. One group taking part this year is Project Safety Net, which was founded in 2009 to implement a community mental-health plan for Palo Alto youth in response to a local cluster of teen suicides. Students will be on the “Asset Builders Chili” team along with adults, promoting the concepts of positive adult role models and youth participation in the community. “The cook-off is a great tradition, and this team that represents so many parts of the community is an embodiment of the spirit of Project Safety Net and the spirit of the cookoff,” said Terry Godfrey, the team’s head cook. The annual cook-off, now in its 31st year, has become a widely attended local event. Eighteen teams are expected to compete this year for awards for best booth, best spirit and, of course, best chili in three divisions. At least five new teams will face off against groups of returning chefs, said Minka van der Zwaag, city supervisor of recreation programs. The event runs from noon to 5 p.m. on July 4 at Mitchell Park, 600 E. Meadow Drive. There will also be disco, funk, soul and Latin music by the band The Hitmen; line dancing with Hedy McAdams; food vendors; and face-painting and other kids’ activities. The Palo Alto Fire Department will display a fire truck. The annual Chili Chase run will not take place this year. In an attempt to make the event more eco-friendly, no single-use water bottles will be sold. Commemorative stainless-steel water bottles will be for sale. Admission is free, with a small fee for chili-tasting kits. Tasting starts at 1:30 p.m. For more information, go to tinyurl.com/pcgqja or call 650-329-2366. In other Fourth of July news, Redwood City’s annual fireworks are returning. Since 2009, the $50,000 fireworks display has been a casualty of budget cuts, but this year, through public funds and private donations, it will return to the Port of Redwood City. At 9:15 p.m. the port will launch the show, which can be seen from high points all around the Peninsula as well as from a public viewing area along the waterfront off Seaport Court. For more details, go to redwoodcity.org or call 650365-1825. The Redwood City festivities begin at 7:30 a.m. on the Fourth with the annual pancake breakfast hosted by the city’s fire department, at Station 9, 755 Marshall St. Breakfast costs $6 for adults and $4 for children, benefitting the Redwood City

Firefighters Association. The city’s popular parade, now in its 74th year, starts at 10 a.m. with decorative floats traveling the 1.25-mile route. The course starts on Marshall Street at the corner of Winslow Street and ends near Alden Street. This year’s theme is “A Salute to Agriculture,” offering a look into Redwood City’s history. Meanwhile, the 26th annual Independence Day Festival goes from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on and around Broadway downtown. The festival will include arts and crafts booths; food and drinks for sale to benefit non-profit organizations; and a kids’ area with a jump house, clowns, face painting and magician Phil Ackerley. For more, go to parade.org or call 650-365-1825. Also in Redwood City is the Annual Parade Run, a 5K event that benefits the Redwood City Education Foundation. The run starts at 8:45 a.m. at Brewster Avenue and Arguello Street. Information is at paraderun.org. For history buffs, the San Mateo County History Museum at 2200 Broadway will host “An OldFashioned Fourth.” From 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. visitors can hand-churn ice cream and make crafts from the 1880s including whirligigs and parachutes. The event costs $2.50 for adults and $1.50 for seniors and students. Go to historysmc.org or call 650-299-0104. In addition, a classic car show will be in Courthouse Square from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. Call 650-368-8212. In Menlo Park, organizers of the annual Fourth parade invite kids with decorated bikes, wagons and floats to march down Santa Cruz Avenue to Burgess Park (701 Laurel St.), where there will be music, games and food. Admission is free and the parade will begin at 11:45 a.m. More information is at tinyurl. com/cvq392b. For those interested in the fine arts, the San Francisco Symphony will play at Mountain View’s Shoreline Amphitheatre at 8 p.m. Conductor Randall Craig Fleischer will lead a program including works by John Williams and Freddie Mercury as well as music from such films as “Rocky” and “Chariots of Fire.” The performance will be followed by a fireworks display. Tickets are $24-$35. Go to sfsymphony.org or call 415-864-6000. (The Weekly’s cover story this week is about Dan Nitzan, who oversees the fireworks.) In Woodside, the Woodside Junior Rodeo will host an event for families who are looking for an unusual Independence Day experience. Activities will include roping, women’s barrel racing, bull riding, pony rides and a pig scramble, with the doors opening at 8 a.m. and the main events starting at noon. The event will be at 521 Kings Mountain Road. Tickets are $18 for adults and $10 for children. Go to mpsmc.org or call 650-851-8300. N

Arts & Entertainment

Worth a Look Theater ‘How to Succeed...’

The television show “Mad Men� has sparked more than one knock-off. Among the more successful is the revival of interest in

the similarly set “How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying,� the classical musical with music and lyrics by Frank Loesser. The original musical, which satirizes the corporate world in the early ‘60s, opened on Broadway in 1961; a revival production ran from March 2011 to May 2012. A new community version of the show will open July 20 at Foothill Musical Theatre, directed by Jay Manley. The story of J. Pierrepont Finch (played by Michael Rhone), a young window washer, begins with his adoption of a “how-to� book bearing the title of the play. Then comes his rise from the mailroom to chairman of the board at the World-Wide Wicket Company. The show runs through Aug. 12, with performances at 8 p.m. Thursday through Saturday, and at 2 p.m. Sundays, in the Smithwick Theatre, 12345 El Monte Road, Los Altos Hills. Tickets are $28 general, $22 for seniors and non-Foothill students, $20 for Foothill staff, $16 for Foothill students, and $10 for kids under 12. Go to foothillmusicals.com or call 650-949-7360.

‘Mrs. Warren’s Profession’

From left, Roselyn Hallett, William J. Brown III and Diane Tasca in “Mrs. Warren’s Profession.�

Ten years after she founded the Pear Avenue Theatre, Palo Alto resident Diane Tasca and her company are still going strong. The Pear is marking its 10th anniversary with a revival of the first play it ever put on, “Mrs. Warren’s Profession,� by George Bernard Shaw. Once more, Tasca plays the title character.

B E T T E R

Directed by Equity actor Ray Renati, the play follows Mrs. Warren, a woman who tells a story of prejudice and financial struggles that led her to run a chain of brothels. Her daughter is properly shocked, and playwright Shaw runs a satirical blade through the double standards of society in his storytelling process. The play runs through July 15 in the small Mountain View theater at 1220 Pear Ave., with performances at 8 p.m. Thursday through Saturday and at 2 p.m. on Sundays. Tickets are $15-$30. For details, go to thepear.org.

Art

Edna Shochat

Monday through Friday and from 6:30 a.m. until 8 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. For more information, contact Shochat at ednashochat@ gmail.com or 650-740-1927.

‘Think Large — Paint Small’ Good things may come in small frames. That’s the concept behind a new show of work by members of the Santa Clara Valley Watercolor Society. Paintings are no larger than 14 inches by 14 inches, but somehow artists have managed to squeeze the Eiffel Tower, a giant rooster and other big ideas onto their papers and canvases. The works of art have been juried into the exhibition by East Bay watercolorist Charlotte Huntley, a member of 34 art societies. The show runs July 2-30 at the Pacific Art League at 668 Ramona St. in downtown Palo Alto, with an artists’ reception scheduled from 5:30 to 8 p.m. Friday, July 6. Admission is free. The gallery is open weekdays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturdays from 10 to 4. Go to pacificartleague.org or call 650-321-3891.

A dog, a cat and a young toddler stand looking through a window. The words underneath read: “Waiting for Ta. The hours pass slowly. It is the years that go by much too fast.� This and other photographs by Edna Shochat line the walls of Philz Coffee as part of an exhibit titled “Notes From a Camera.� Each picture is accompanied by several lines of verse. Shochat’s musings on everyday experiences range from humorous to thoughtful, encouraging the viewer to take a closer look. The photographs are deceptively simple, many capturing ordinary moments, such as ducks walking on wet pavement or a child reading a book, yet the poetry coupled with the photographs often illustrates a story. Shochat’s exhibit is on display until July 6 in Philz Coffee at 3191 Middlefield Road in Palo Alto. The cafe is Candy Yu’s painting “Amy’s Kauai� is part of a new open from 6 a.m. until 8:30 p.m. from exhibition at the Pacific Art League in Palo Alto.

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Eating Out RESTAURANT REVIEW

East-West confusion Far from its illustrious Hong Kong origins, the new Yucca de Lac seems a little lost by Dale F. Bentson ouTube has a dozen or so film clips of the original Hong Kong Yucca de Lac, the restaurant that overlooked Tolo Harbour and was torn down in 2005. The origins of the building are obscure, but it seems to have been a Japanese-style hostel owned by a Hong Kong tycoon until 1963, when the Pang family bought it and converted it to a restaurant. (“Yucca de Lac� means “evergreen by the lake.�) Bruce Lee was often spotted dining with his family there; numerous movie scenes were filmed on-site; and the glitterati of Hong Kong and beyond took advantage of the broad panoramic patio and beautiful weather, a place to see and be seen.

Veronica Weber

Y

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Orange chicken at Yucca de Lac is sticky-sweet and slightly spicy.

I couldn’t locate an old menu but read that roast pigeon and spicy fried prawns were house favorites. I did unearth a 2000 interview in Hong Kong’s Varsity magazine with Lo Chee Ping, a waiter who had been in service at the restaurant since it opened. He claimed that the restaurant served 600 customers a day. The current rendition of Yucca de Lac is at Stanford Shopping Center, owned by Parnell Pang of the Hong Kong family. The restaurant is inviting and chicly appointed, but it seems to have traveled far from its origins. In fact, I found the menu — an unusual East-West fusion — to be somewhat of a head-scratcher. Asian staples such as steamed

Call for Entries

21st Annual Palo Alto Weekly Photo Contest Cash and gift certificate prizes will be awarded to 1st - 3rd place winners in the following Adult and Youth categories: Portraits, Bay Area Images, Views Beyond the Bay

ENTRY DEADLINE July 6, 2012

For complete rules and submissions details go to: www.PaloAltoOnline.com/photo_contest Age: â?‘ Adult â?‘ Youth (17 yrs. or younger as of 7/6/12) Category: â?‘ Bay Area Images â?‘ Views Beyond the Bay Area â?‘ Portraits Photo Title: __________________________________________________________________________________ Photo Location: ______________________________________________________________________________ Your Name: ________________________________________________________________________________ If non-resident, work location or school you attend: _______________________________________________ Email: ______________________________________________________________________________________ Address: ___________________________________________________________________________________ City/Zip: _____________________ Day Phone: ___________________________ Entry submission implies agreement of statement below. This photograph is my original work and was taken in the past 5 years. I understand that the Palo Alto Weekly reserves ďŹ rst publishing and online rights to winning entries and those chosen for exhibition. Judges will use their discretion as to whether an image needs to be recatagorized. Judges decisions are ďŹ nal.

Photographer’s Signature _____________________________________________________________________

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Entry fees: Adult $25 per image Youth $15 per image One entry per category You may use this form to mail payment for entries submitted by email and/or to mail your images on a CD. No print submissions. Matted prints for winning entries will be requested of the photographer for exhibition.

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Eating Out

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dumplings, pot stickers and spring rolls were offered along with baby back ribs, arugula-watermelon salad and tiramisu. No roast pigeon or spicy fried prawns. The food drifted between very good and mediocre, and portions were uneven: enough for two sometimes, barely enough for one at others. Prices were high and entrees came with nothing else on the plate. Add another four to eight dollars for a rice or vegetable dish. Wines were at stick-em-up prices. Opened in March, Pang only recently appointed Joe Gorcsi as manager. During a recent telephone interview, Gorcsi said he was working hard at improvements to both the front of the house and in the kitchen. Duly noted. Appetizers included crispy “chopsticks� ($9), a touch of shrimp paste and garlic inside tightly rolled fried batter. The half-dozen sticks were sparse food for nine dollars and were served with dreary celery and carrot sticks. To add to my incredulity, there was a maraschino cherry in the wasabi-mayonnaise dipping sauce that I had mistaken for a cherry tomato. Har gow ($8) was three steamed dumplings filled with shrimp and fennel. Pretty presentation in the bamboo steamer, but the dumplings were tiny and the shrimp and fennel flavors barely registered. The crab-and-avocado spring roll ($10) was the best of the lot. The crabmeat and avocado were rolled fat into rice paper, chilled and beautifully presented. (Although the menu made me a tad uneasy, emphasizing “real crab meat.�) Now, main dishes. The Tolo Cove ribs ($28) were terrific. The two large marinated slabs were slowroasted and slathered in ginger-garlic sauce. Huge portion. Fall-off-thebone tender. Meaty. I took one slab home and luxuriated in the delicious aromas filling the car en route. Other entrees were less successful. The miso-garlic salmon ($25) was an ample portion of perfectly cooked Canadian salmon. The miso-garlic sauce, though, wasn’t salty, sweet, earthy, fruity or savory - flavors most associated with miso. Like most of the dishes, this one was bland. A couple of sprigs of fresh asparagus accompanied. Orange chicken ($22) featured chunks of organic breast in stickysweet and supposedly spicy orange sauce. Let’s say sweet with the vaguest hint of chili. The portion size didn’t support the price, with

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Crab-andavocado spring rolls are artfully presented. no extras on the plate. The side of French string beans ($8) sat in a pool of nondescript brown sauce. Dime-store spaghetti tongs were left as the serving utensils. Desserts were all $6.75. Nothing worth the calories. The molten cake was unexciting chocolate sponge cake with warm chocolate cream inside. The tiramisu substituted rum syrup for espresso. I don’t recall seeing Italian desserts on Asian or Asian-fusion menus before. “Mango Dreaming� was described as homemade mango pudding with “real mango chunks.� The pudding was so congealed and rubbery it might have bounced had it fallen off the table. No discernible flavor. Those wines, by the way, were $12 per miserly pour for the 2010 Talbott Logan Chardonnay, Santa Lucia, which retails for $15.99 the bottle; and $9 per pour for the 2011 Yalumba Viognier, Barossa Valley, which retails for $11.29 the bottle at local stores. I realize Stanford Shopping Center is a high-rent district, but really. The servers were all pleasant and generally knowledgeable. Oddly, there were no chopsticks available, just Western utensils. One can only hope for improvement, and Gorcsi seems determined to tweak what a manager can tweak. Bigger hurdles remain for Pang: the menu, the prices and the overall concept. The restaurant’s name doesn’t mean anything to most Americans. I admire subsequent generations doing their own thing, but other than the name, there seems scant connection to the original Yucca de Lac. I don’t know how the Pang ancestors would respond, but so far, I doubt former waiter Lo Chee Ping would approve. Yucca de Lac, Stanford Shopping Center, Palo Alto; 650-322-1188; yuccarestaurant.com Hours: Weekdays 11 a.m.-10 p.m. Sat.-Sun. 11 a.m.-9 p.m.

 

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Thaiphoon 323-7700 543 Emerson Ave, Palo Alto www.ThaiphoonRestaurant.com

Read and post reviews, explore restaurant menus, get hours and directions and more at ShopPaloAlto, ShopMenloPark and ShopMountainView

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“One of the most delightful things about ‘To Rome With Love’ is how casually it blends the plausible and the surreal, and how unabashedly it revels in pure silliness.� -A.O. Scott, THE NEW YORK TIMES

“‘To Rome With Love’ has pleasures galore.� -Peter Travers, ROLLING STONE

“It’s hard not to fall under the movie’s spell and indulge in some picturesque escapism.� -Claudia Puig, USA TODAY

“Woody Allen sends us out of the theater with the sense that we’ve been to a really good party with people we’d like to see again and again.� -Karen Durbin, ELLE

“So assured and Allen’s plotting so intricate it’s hard not to marvel at it. I marveled.� -David Edelstein, NEW YORK MAGAZINE

TO ROME WITH LOVE WRITTEN AND DIRECTED BY WOODY ALLEN

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(Century 16, Century 20) Solid writing and strong performances by leads Chris Pine and Elizabeth Banks propel “People Like Us� from a maudlin drama to a memorable one. The character-driven story is a welcome respite from the barrage of visual effects slamming into theaters of late. It’s somewhat ironic considering director Alex Kurtzman — making his feature debut — has a record of writing and producing action-oriented television shows like “Alias� and “Fringe.� And although “People� is at times emotionally manipulative and saccharine to a fault, the picture’s family dynamics come across as sincere and compelling. New York-based businessman Sam Harper (Pine) reluctantly travels back home to Los Angeles when he gets word that his absentee father has passed away. Sam, facing legal and financial troubles in the Big Apple, is greeted coldly by his mother (Michelle Pfeiffer, aging gracefully), who has clearly grown weary of Sam’s penchant for running away from problems. The attorney for his father’s estate informs Sam that he has been bequeathed his dad’s impressive record collection and a weathered bag, which he is to deliver to working mom Frankie (Banks) and her son Josh (Michael Hall D’Addario), strangers to Sam. When Sam realizes the bag contains $150,000 in cash, he is tempted to keep the money, and elects to surreptitiously learn more about its intended recipients. Sam quickly discovers that he and Frankie have more in common than he imagined. Pine and Banks shine in their challenging roles and prove they have more thespian depth than people might realize. Pine is a charismatic natural; his character’s journey from selfish to selfless is believable throughout. Banks delivers her dialogue perfectly — it isn’t so much what she says but how she says it that makes her character so genuine (and likable). And Pfeiffer serves up yet another stellar performance, reminding us why she has become something of a cinematic icon. In the film, Sam’s dad was a record producer, and the movie’s excellent soundtrack (including tunes from Bob Dylan, The Clash and others) highlights the musical undertones. The pacing does lag at times, and watching “People� after swigging a tablespoon of Nyquil is not recommended. The sentimentality proves a tad draining by the time the end credits roll (the definition of a “tearjerker�), and the script could have done with a bit more laugh-out-loud humor. Ultimately, though, the cast and an honest foundation make “People� well worth watching. Rated PG-13 for brief sexuality, some drug use and language. One hour, 55 minutes. — Tyler Hanley

To Rome with Love --

(Palo Alto Square) There are three million stories in the Eternal City; Woody Allen tells four of them. For his follow-up to the enjoyable but overpraised “Midnight in Paris,� Allen goes “To Rome with Love� and promptly loses his way. Allen long ago made his reputation as a filmmaker — especially as a comic one — and no one can take that away from him, not even Woody himself. But that doesn’t stop him from trying. His new film was originally titled “The Bop Decameron,� suggesting a jazzy variation on Boccaccio’s medieval collection of satirical fables and love stories. As a title, “To Rome with Love� wisely sets the bar lower, and die-hard Allen fans who won’t be deterred from going would do well to limbo under those expectations. The most pleasurable aspect of “To Rome with Love� — apart from the golden-hued location photography of Darius Khondji — is the onscreen appearance of Allen, who hasn’t performed for the camera since his 2006 film “Scoop.� Allen plays retired opera director

Jerry, who accompanies his wife (Judy Davis) to Rome to meet the fiance (Flavio Parenti) of their daughter Hayley (Alison Pill). Jerry overhears the young man’s father (Fabio Armiliato) singing opera in the shower, and determines to make a (reluctant) star out of him. Meanwhile, American architect John (Alec Baldwin) wanders his old haunts from a bygone youth spent in Rome. There he finds an aspiring American architect (Jesse Eisenberg) who reminds John of himself, prompting the older man to try to keep the younger one from making the same romantic mistakes with his girlfriend (Greta Gerwig) and a sexy new acquaintance (Ellen Page). Elsewhere, middle-class cubicle dweller Leopoldo Pisanello (Roberto Benigni) finds himself magically anointed a celebrity who’s “famous for being famous�: hounded by the paparazzi, granted the best tables in restaurants, and attracting the most beautiful women (never mind his wife). Also bopping around are a justmarried couple (Alessandro Tiberi and Alessandra Mastronardi) who farcically wind up in the arms of other people: he with a prostitute (Penelope Cruz) and she with a movie star (Antonio Albanese). None of the storylines is without its problems. The tales tend to be predictable, obvious and, in terms of humor and thematic import, weak tea. Benigni does a fine job, but he’s saddled with a two-joke premise (fame comes, fame goes) that becomes tired almost immediately; Baldwin and Eisenberg are fatally mismatched; and so on. More distressing is Allen’s regressive treatment of women (as wet blankets; eager adulteresses; manipulative, emotionally ruinous temptresses; or in one hoary Italian stereotype, a knife-wielding hothead) and an off-putting solipsism. Repeatedly, sexy women confess their attraction to Woody-esque men with power, celebrity, neuroses and a tendency for “reminiscing� about the past. One woman tells Leopoldo: “The rules don’t apply to you. You’re special.� It may be satire, but the whole point of the fame story is for Allen to kvetch that the only thing worse than being famous is not being famous. Gee, thanks, we’ll remember that. Allen’s privileged-male, American-in-Rome condescension takes most of the fun out of the film. It’s easier to flinch than laugh when Page’s character tells Baldwin’s, “You will never understand women,� and he replies, “That’s been proven.� Rated R for some sexual references. One hour, 42 minutes. — Peter Canavese

Ted -

(Century 16, Century 20) Let’s say you’re a TV mogul, and Universal Pictures hands you $65 million to make your first big-screen comedy. Would you squander the creative opportunity by recycling your TV material and spackling on R-rated jokes? Seth MacFarlane (“Family Guy�) would, and did, with “Ted.� Those who love “Family Guy� may well love “Ted� even more, but it’s a lazy comedy: stupid, aimless and seldom funny, its good gags drowned in a sea of duds. As explained by dulcet-toned narrator Patrick Stewart, a magically granted “Christmas wish� imbues the teddy bear of 8-year-old John Bennett with consciousness. The bear, Ted, becomes a flash-in-the-pan celebrity doing Carson one day and forgotten the next, but 27 years later, John (Mark Wahlberg) remains joined at the hip to his fuzzy best friend (voiced by MacFarlane). This presents a problem in John’s relationship with Lori (Mila Kunis), who wants John to put away childish things and begin acting like a responsible adult. John makes some effort to earn a promotion at the renta-car outfit where he works, but the Bostonian’s heart belongs on the couch, with Ted and a bong. Despite MacFarlane’s “boys will be boys� attitude, it’s difficult to sympathize with these selfish males, particularly the overtly racist Ted.

Movies John’s halfhearted commitment to Lori means Ted has to move out and get a job, prompting an amusing running gag about how he can’t get fired, no matter how hard he tries. But Ted continues to exert pull on John and push Lori to her breaking point. Then there’s the “Misery�-esque subplot, in which Ted becomes threatened by a celebrity stalker (Giovanni Ribisi) and his son (Aedin Mincks, the butt of fat jokes). MacFarlane’s latest talking “animal� essentially puts the voice of “Family Guy�’s obnoxious Peter Griffin into the body of his dog Brian. (In a lame attempt to defuse criticism, MacFarlane makes a joke of the obvious similarity). And MacFarlane’s sense of humor hasn’t evolved: like Han Solo in carbonite (see what I did there?), MacFarlane is trapped in his own pop-culture nostalgia, and the endless celebrity-themed jokes and movie parodies betray him as more of a comedy parasite than a comedy auteur. Take, for instance, the scene that unironically parodies not “Saturday Night Fever,� but “Airplane!� parodying “Saturday Night Fever.� Why? No reason. MacFarlane either takes cheap shots at celebrities or gets them to play along in cameos (Norah Jones being one; a young movie star, in a wordless appearance, another). It’s almost worth the price of admission to see Wahlberg happily clinging to the waist of Sam “Flash Gordon� Jones, but otherwise MacFarlane enrolls in the school of profane shock comedy that’s gleefully profane but too rarely clever. If you yearn to be treated like an 8-year-old, this R-rated kids’ movie for adults — the very opposite of Judd Apatow’s wave of “time to grow up� comedies — is all yours. Rated R for some sexual references. One hour, 47 minutes. — Peter Canavese NOW PLAYING Brave ---1/2 (Century 16, Century 20) For the most part Pixar has been a toon town brimming with testosterone. “Brave� breaks the mold with its vivacious (and female) heroine, and a plot that explores her relationship with her mother. It would have been easy to follow the generic “young adventurer embarks on a life-changing quest� formula. But some of the best movies are those that dare to be different. The story follows bow-wielding Merida, the daughter of King Fergus and Queen Elinor. Elinor is determined to make Merida a polished princess, while Merida’s interests are more in line with her father’s warrior ways. “Brave� features arguably the best animation ever to grace the big screen. The visuals are fluid and vibrant, from the rolling Highland hills to the crimson strands of Merida’s hair. Lads may be disappointed by the wealth of feminine energy, but I found it refreshing. The relationship that evolves between mother and daughter is heartfelt. There is a surprising beauty to “Brave� that transcends its visual excellence. This one is worth the risk. Rated PG for scary action and rude humor. One hour, 40 minutes. — T.H. (Reviewed June 22, 2012) Your Sister’s Sister --1/2 (Aquarius) Relationships have a way of becoming needlessly complicated, as reflected by the title of the cleverly complicated relationship film “Your Sister’s Sister.� In a well-realized opening sequence, Mark Duplass’ Jack casts a shadow over a one-year memorial get-together in honor of his late brother (who once dated Emily Blunt’s Iris). Concerned about her friend, Iris invites Jack to get away from it all, at a cabin belonging to her family. But Jack

THEATER ADDRESSES Aquarius: 430 Emerson St., Palo Alto (266-9260) Century Cinema 16: 1500 N. Shoreline Blvd., Mountain View (800-326-3264) Century 20 Downtown: 825 Middlefield Road, Redwood City (800-326-3264) CinĂŠArts at Palo Alto Square: 3000 El Camino Real, Palo Alto (493-3456) Guild: 949 El Camino Real, Menlo Park (266-9260) Stanford: 221 University Ave., Palo Alto (324-3700) Internet address: For show times, plot synopses, trailers and more information about films playing, go to PaloAltoOnline.com/movies arrives at the cabin to discover that it’s already occupied by Hannah (Rosemarie DeWitt), Iris’ lesbian sister. The ensuing drunken meeting of minds (and body parts) becomes more complicated when Iris turns up to check on Jack The film devotes itself to character, and the actors eagerly take advantage of the opportunity. Duplass pushes just a bit here, to convey how loose and natural he’s being. But Blunt and DeWitt deliver impeccable performances, selling us on their sisterhood and bond. The film turns out not to be heady in theme and may not linger long after viewing, but it’s still an enjoyable emotional wringer to be put through. Rated R for language and some sexual content. One hour, 30 minutes. — P.C. (June 22, 2012) Rock of Ages -(Century 20, Century 16) Musicals are something of an acquired taste, and “Rock of Agesâ€? is more cheeseburger than lobster bisque. There is a silliness to the whole affair (partially intended) that makes it difficult to get very invested in the plot — though Tom Cruise’s magnetic performance in itself almost makes the movie worth the price of admission. Almost. To say Cruise steals the show is an understatement — he purloins it with the gusto of a treasurehungry pirate. In “Rockâ€? the actors belt out one iconic 1980s rock tune after another (think Guns N’ Roses, Def Leppard and Poison), but like many musicals, it fares better on stage. The story suffers beneath all of the prancing and verse, and a movie without story is like a single-string guitar. It just doesn’t play well and grows tiresome in a hurry. Rated PG-13 for sexual content, language, some heavy drinking and suggestive dancing. Two hours, 3 minutes. — T.H. (Reviewed June 15, 2012) The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel --1/2 (Palo Alto Square) Seven pensioners board a plane from England to India in this lastchance-at-love travelogue. Part of the joke of this comedy-drama is that the title isn’t entirely truth in advertising. Rundown and lacking in amenities the spot isn’t the best, but it is a hotel and exotic, and there’s no turning back for the strangers who become the place’s first guests. Though the picture cozies up to cliches, it has this going for it: The course of the film’s romances isn’t immediately apparent. The story comes down firmly in favor of plucky and against sour sticks-in-the-mud. Each plot seems underserved and the whole enterprise too platitudinous, but with powerhouse actors like Dench, Nighy and Wilkinson, even a critic can agree it’s better to be plucky than a stick-in-the-mud. Rated PG-13 for sexual content and language. Two hours, four minutes. — P.C. (Reviewed May 11, 2012) Moonrise Kingdom ---1/2 (Century 20, Century 16) For well over a decade, writer-director Wes Anderson has faced criticism of his films being fussily repetitive. Though his new film “Moonrise Kingdomâ€? is nothing if not fussy, it’s Anderson’s freshest, breeziest work since the high-water mark of 1998’s “Rushmore.â€? “Moonriseâ€? tells of a pair of troubled and gifted 12-year-olds who, in 1965, elope into the wild of New Penzance Island. Other than Anderson’s own oeuvre, the film best recalls “Harold and Maudeâ€? as an offbeat romance of two plain-spoken lovers against the world. Anderson contrasts the simplicity of young love with the adults’ insistence of complicating everything. The

MOVIE TIMES Showtimes for the Century 16 and Century 20 theaters are for Friday through Monday only unless otherwise noted. Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter (R) (Not Reviewed) Century 16: 12:30 & 6:10 p.m.; In 3D at 10 a.m.; 1, 2, 4, 7, 8 & 9:50 p.m. Century 20: 1:20 & 6:30 p.m.; In 3D at 10:45 & 11:55 a.m.; 2:25, 3:55, 5, 7:35, 9:05 & 10:20 p.m. The Amazing Spider-Man (PG-13) (Not Reviewed) Century 16: Mon. at 12:01 a.m.; Tue. at 7 p.m.; In 3D Mon. at 12:01 a.m.; In 3D Tue.-Thu. at 12:10, 3:50, 7:30 & 10:50 p.m. Century 20: Mon. at 12:02 a.m.; Tue.-Thu. at 10:40 a.m.; 1:50, 5 & 8:15 p.m.; In 3D Mon. at 12:01 & 12:03 a.m.; In 3D Tue.-Thu. at 10:05 a.m.; 1:10, 4:20, 7:30 & 10:40 p.m. Bernie (PG-13) ((( Guild Theatre: 3:30, 6 & 8:30 p.m.; Fri.-Sun. & Wed. also at 1 p.m. The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel (PG-13) ((1/2 Century 20: 10:25 a.m.; 4:10 & 7:05 p.m. Palo Alto Square: 1:15, 4:15, 7:15 & 10 p.m. Brave (PG) (((1/2 Century 16: 10 & 11:40 a.m.; 12:50, 3:40, 5:10, 6:20 & 9:10 p.m.; In 3D at 10:40 a.m.; 1:30, 4:30, 7:20 & 9:55 p.m. Century 20: Fri.Wed. at 11:15 a.m.; 1:50, 4:25, 7 & 9:35 p.m.; Fri.-Mon. also at 10:30 a.m. & 3:40 p.m.; Fri.-Sun. also at 11:50 a.m. & 8:45 p.m.; Fri. & Sat. also at 10:25 a.m.; In 3D Fri.-Mon. at 12:05, 1:05, 2:35, 5:15, 6:15, 7:50 & 10:25 p.m. Headhunters (R) (Not Reviewed) Aquarius Theatre: 5, 7:30 & 9:55 p.m.; Fri.-Sun. & Wed. also at 2:30 p.m. Katy Perry: Part of Me (PG) (Not Reviewed) Century 16: In 3D Thu. at 10 a.m.; 12:20, 2:40, 5:10, 8 & 10:30 p.m. Century 20: In 3D Thu. at 10:35 a.m.; 12:55, 3:15, 5:40, 8:10 & 10:35 p.m. The Ladykillers (1955) (Not Rated) (Not Reviewed) Stanford Theatre: Wed. & Thu. at 7:30 p.m. Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted (PG) (Not Reviewed) Century 16: 10:10 a.m.; 3:30 & 8:50 p.m.; In 3D at 11 a.m. & 5 p.m. Century 20: 10:20 a.m.; 12:40, 3, 5:20, 7:40 & 10 p.m.; In 3D at 11:40 a.m.; 2, 4:35, 6:55 & 9:15 p.m. Magic Mike (R) (Not Reviewed) Century 16: Fri.-Thu. at 11 a.m.; 1:50, 4:30, 7:40 & 10:30 p.m. Century 20: Fri.-Wed. at 11:50 a.m.; 2:25, 5, 7:45 & 10:30 p.m.; Fri.Mon. also at 10:20 a.m.; 1:10, 3:50, 6:30 & 9:10 p.m. Marvel’s The Avengers (PG-13) (((( Century 16: 11:50 a.m. & 6:50 p.m.; In 3D at 3 p.m.; In 3D Fri.-Sun. also at 10:10 p.m. Century 20: 1:35 p.m.; In 3D at 7:25 p.m. Men in Black 3 (PG-13) ((( Century 16: 4 p.m.; In 3D Fri.-Sun. at 10:35 p.m. Century 20: 11:05 a.m.; In 3D at 4:50 p.m.; In 3D Sun. also at 10:35 p.m. Moonrise Kingdom (PG-13) (((1/2 Century 16: 11:30 a.m.; 1:50, 4:30, 7:30 & 10:10 p.m. Century 20: 12:25, 2:45, 5:10, 7:45 & 10:10 p.m. Our Man in Havana (1959) (Not Rated) (Not Reviewed) Stanford Theatre: Wed. & Thu. at 5:30 & 9:10 p.m. People Like Us (PG-13) ((( Century 16: 10:20 a.m.; 1:10, 4:10, 7:20 & 10:20 p.m. Century 20: 11 a.m.; 1:45, 4:30, 7:20 & 10:05 p.m. Prometheus (R) (Not Reviewed) Century 16: 3:10 & 10:05 p.m.; In 3D at 11:40 a.m. & 7 p.m. Century 20: 10:55 a.m.; In 3D at 1:45, 7:35 & 10:35 p.m. Rock of Ages (PG-13) (( Century 16: 2:10 & 7:45 p.m. Century 20: 3:50, 6:40 & 9:30 p.m.; Fri., Sat. & Mon. also at 1 p.m.; Sun. also at 1:05 p.m. Roman Holiday (1953) (Not Rated) (Not Reviewed) Stanford Theatre: Sat.-Tue. at 7:30 p.m.; Sat. & Sun. also at 3:15 p.m. Sabrina (1954) (Not Rated) (( Stanford Theatre: Sat.-Tue. at 5:25 & 9:40 p.m. Safety Not Guaranteed (R) (Not Reviewed) Century 16: 11:30 a.m.; 1:50, 4:20, 7:05 & 9:30 p.m. Century 20: Fri.-Sun. at 9:50 p.m.; Mon. at 8:40 p.m. Seeking a Friend for the End of the World (R) (( Century 20: 2:15, 4:45 & 7:15 p.m.; Sun. & Mon. also at 9:50 p.m.; Mon. also at 11:30 a.m. Snow White and the Huntsman (PG-13) ((1/2 Century 16: 10 a.m.; 12:55, 7:10 & 10:25 p.m. Century 20: 10:40 a.m.; 1:30, 4:20, 7:30 & 10:30 p.m. Ted (R) ( Century 16: 10 & 11 a.m.; 12:40, 1:40, 3:30, 4:30, 6:30, 7:30, 9:30 & 10:30 p.m. Century 20: Fri.-Wed. at 2:45, 5:20 & 10:40 p.m.; Fri.-Mon. also at 1:30, 4:05, 6:45 & 9:25 p.m.; Fri.-Sun. also at 8 p.m.; Fri., Sat. & Mon. also at 10:50 a.m. & 12:10 p.m.; Sun. also at 10:45 a.m. & 12:15 p.m.; Mon.-Wed. also at 7:50 p.m. That’s Entertainment! (1974) (G) (Not Reviewed) Century 16: Wed. at 2 & 7 p.m. Century 20: Wed. at 2 & 7 p.m. That’s My Boy (R) (Not Reviewed) Century 20: 1:20 p.m.; Mon. also at 10:05 p.m. To Rome With Love (R) (( Palo Alto Square: 1:30, 4:30, 7:25 & 10:05 p.m. Tyler Perry’s Madea’s Witness Protection (PG-13) (Not Reviewed) Century 16: 10:40 a.m.; 1:20, 4:20, 7:40 & 10:40 p.m. Century 20: 12:15, 2:50, 5:25, 8:05 & 10:45 p.m. Your Sister’s Sister (R) ((1/2 Aquarius Theatre: 4:15, 7 & 9:30 p.m.; Fri.-Sun. & Wed. also at 1:45 p.m.

( Skip it (( Some redeeming qualities ((( A good bet (((( Outstanding

script by Anderson and Roman Coppola allows none of the plot elements to spin out of control, and the director keeps it short and sweet. So if Anderson’s carefully regulated compositions and dollhouse-styled production design send you climbing up the walls, keep your distance. But this time, the filmmaker isn’t too clever by half: He’s just clever enough. Rated PG-13 for sexual content and smoking. One hour, 34 minutes. — P.C. (Reviewed June 8, 2012)

Century Theatres at Palo Alto Square

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Friday – Thursday 6/29 – 7/5

Best Exotic Marigold Hotel 1:15, 4:15, 7:15, 10:00

To Rome with Love

1:30, 4:30, 7:25, 10:05 Tickets and Showtimes available at cinemark.com

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Directed By Wes Anderson Wes Anderson & Roman Coppola

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Check Local Listings For Theatre Locations And Showtimes ĂœĂœĂœÂ°*>Â?ÂœÂ?ĂŒÂœ"˜Â?ˆ˜i°VÂœÂ“ĂŠUĂŠ*>Â?ÂœĂŠÂ?ĂŒÂœĂŠ7iiÂŽÂ?ÞÊUĂŠĂ•Â˜iÊә]ÊÓä£ÓÊU Page 31

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ON THE AIR Friday Track & field: U.S. Olympic Team Trials, 3 p.m., NBC Sports Network (Comcast Cable 723 HD) Swimming: U.S. Olympic Team Trials, 1:30 p.m., NBC Sports Network; 8 p.m., NBC

David Bernal/Stanfordphoto.com

RETIRED . . . Menlo College said goodbye to one of the most storied and successful coaches in the department’s history this week as Bill Imwalle officially announced his retirement on Monday. Imwalle rejuvenated the Lady Oaks volleyball program as head coach from 1999-2009, while also leading the Oaks golf team from 2004-2012. Imwalle leaves his Menlo career as volleyball’s second most winningest coach, compiling a remarkable 144-87 (.623) record. His tenure included five California Pacific Conference championships, four undefeated conference seasons, and two NAIA National Tournament appearances. In addition, Imwalle’s his five Cal Pac championship teams posted a combined 71-1 conference record. “Bill’s service and commitment to our student-athletes in both volleyball and golf has been immeasurable,� said Menlo Director of Athletics Keith Spataro. “He has been instrumental in the transformation of both programs to conference contenders and he will be missed.� Imwalle restored the volleyball program back to its former glory, mirroring the proud tradition of the late 1980s. Under Menlo Hall of Fame Coach Malcolm Taylor (182-85 record), the Lady Oaks reached the pinnacle with a No. 1 national ranking in 1986, while the 1989 team won the Western Region Championship and earned a trip to the Final Four in St. Louis, MO. The 1989 squad is still the only team in Menlo College sports history to reach an NCAA Final Four. After the days of Taylor’s triumphant reign, the program went into a steady decline that lasted through the mid-90s. It wasn’t until Imwalle came on the scene in 1999, that the Lady Oaks got back to their winning ways. No other Menlo coach has accumulated as many conference championships in the department’s history, while Imwalle himself was recognized as the Cal Pac Coach of the Year on four separate occasions. His players won numerous accolades as well throughout his sparkling tenure.

Recent Stanford graduate Chad La Tourette is the No. 1 seed in the men’s 1500-meter freestyle at the U.S. Olympic Trials, where he finished third in 2008.

Trying to out-distance disappointment Stanford grad Chad La Tourette eyes Olympic team berth in 1500 free after finishing third in 2008 by Caroline Martin

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wimming in the 2012 Olympic Games would be the “culmination of a dream� said Stanford senior Chad La Tourette. “It’s what every kid dreams about and making it would be opening the door to another opportunity,� La Tourette said. La Tourette knows exactly what to expect this year though, as he competed in 2008 for a shot at the Beijing Games at just 19, postpon-

ing his freshman year at Stanford. Barely missing the cut and taking third in the 1500-meter freestyle, he was not able to travel on to Beijing and compete. He needed to be among the top two. “It was difficult,� La Tourette said. “At first it felt like I did it all for nothing.� He continued to travel and train at different sites, but with an eatsleep-swim daily routine and his entire schedule focused on training,

Azevedo takes history into fourth Games

Steffens plays like a vet for Team USA

Swimming: U.S. Olympic Team Trials, 3:30 p.m., NBC Sports Network; 8 p.m., NBC Track & field: U.S. Olympic Team Trials, 9 p.m., NBC

tanford grad Tony Azevedo has made some history by being named to the 2012 U.S. Olympic Men’s Water Polo team. He and teammate Ryan Bailey are the first male water polo players in U.S. history to compete in four Olympiads. USA head coach Terry Schroeder made that happen this week as he named the 13 athletes who will compete at the 2012 Olympic Games this summer in London, England. The U.S. squad features 10 returners from the 2008 team that won the silver medal in Beijing. The team clinched a trip to the 2012 Olympic Games by winning gold at the 2011 Pan American

Monday Swimming: U.S. Olympic Team Trials, 8 p.m.; NBC

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(continued on page 35)

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by Rick Eymer ncoming Stanford freshman Maggie Steffens owns an advantage over most of her future Cardinal women’s water polo teammates. The high school All-American has been playing with the U.S. National Team for nearly three years and among her current teammates are Melissa Seidemann and Annika Dries, who will join Steffens in the fall at Stanford in hopes of challenging for a third straight national title. Steffens, who grew up in San Ramon and Danville, already has made several trips to the Avery Aquatic Center, where she watched older sister Jessica play for Stanford. She’s already played an international

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WOMEN’S WATER POLO

by Rick Eymer

Sunday

case when he competes in the 1500meter free prelims on Sunday and finals on Monday at the U.S. Olympic Trials in Omaha, Neb. He is the top American at that distance this year and a big favorite to earn a trip to the Summer Games in London, England. He missed a possible Olympic berth in the 400 free on Monday when he failed to reach the finals.

MEN’S WATER POLO

Saturday

Swimming: U.S. Olympic Team Trials, 3 p.m., NBC Sports Network; 8 p.m., NBC Track & field: U.S. Olympic Team Trials, 7 p.m., NBC

he longed to regain balance. “It was nice to clear my head for a while, but sometimes it’s hard not to get bored or antsy training all the time,� said La Tourette. Four years later, La Tourette has been anything but bored with national titles, record-setting times and international medals. With a growing legacy both with the Cardinal and across the world, La Tourette has proven tough to beat. He certainly hopes that will be the

Stanford grad and team captain Tony Azevedo will play in his fourth Olympic Games next month in London, England.

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SWIMMING

U.S. Olympic Trials shows its teeth Local athletes struggle to reach semifinals and finals by Keith Peters

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he U.S. Olympic Team Trials in swimming doesn’t discriminate; it’s an equal opportunity destroyer, of dreams that is. There’s a very good reason why the quadrennial meet is called the toughest in the world, even more difficult than the Olympic Games. With only two berths available in most events, athletes who might be the best in other countries are left home. Four years ago, Stanford’s Tara Kirk was attempting to make her second straight Olympic team in the women’s 100-meter breaststroke. She finished third in 1:07.51. Second place was 1:07.50. That’s the difference between dream and disappointment. Stanford grad Elaine Breeden also knows that disappointment. Four years ago, she won the women’s 200

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La Tourette

(continued from previous page)

Nonetheless, the 1500 free is his best event. He ranks No. 1 in the USA this season at 15:06.73, which leaves him only No. 19 in the world. La Tourette has enjoyed nothing but success at Stanford during his four years, which wrapped up this spring. As a freshman, sophomore and junior he took home the Pac-10 Conference title in the 1650-yard freestyle. Each year he also placed in the top two at NCAA’s, taking home the 1650 freestyle national title as just a sophomore. La Tourette is the all-time top performer in Stanford history in the 1650 free and ranks among the top 10 for the 500 free and 1000 free for head coach Skip Kenney. Before the 2011-2012 season had even begun, La Tourette was in the top 50 of all-time NCAA point scorers for Stanford. As a team, Stanford has won the conference title for 31 straight years. One would think La Tourette felt the pressure to continue this streak, but it appears it comes only from within. “I put pressure on myself,� said La Tourette. “Coaches want to see you do well, but they’re also very focused on the team effort which takes pressure off. It’s just swimming fast and having fun with your friends,� he said. While many college athletes decide to forego their senior season to train and focus on the Games, La Tourette decided to stay. With the consistent practice and competition schedule on the collegiate level, training remained challenging and interactive. “The ability to race so much in the season is valuable training that will make short and long course better,� he said earlier in the year. “I can consistently focus on things I need to get better on.� La Tourette has gained four years of powerful competition and training, both on collegiate and international levels. “It’s been four years of blood, sweat and tears and it means a lot to represent the program,� said La Tourette. “I respect my coaches a lot and it’s an honor to represent them and the values they’ve instilled in me.� A native of Mission Viejo, the water has never been very foreign to La Tourette. He has always been

around the pool, from attending summer league with his family as a kid to water sports with friends. “In terms of competitive swimming, growing up there (in Orange County) facilitated it,� said La Tourette. “In Mission Viejo, it’s a natural option.� After breaking his leg playing youth soccer he started to really focus his attention on swimming and at about age 12, began swimming competitively. Hardly after starting his swimming career, Stanford was in the picture. “It (Stanford) has always been a dream school for me,� said La Tourette. “I got to see it when I was young, probably when I was 10, and definitely since I was eight I wanted to go there.� His dream of the Olympics wasn’t any different. “A lot of kids say ‘I want to go (to the Olympics)’, but I took it seriously before 2008,� said La Tourette. With another opportunity to fulfill his dream and make the U.S. Olympic team, La Tourette’s mindset has changed since 2008. “You have more confidence,� La Tourette said. “To race here (at Stanford) and have international experience, it helps me measure against the guys. Knowing it’s a long road to catch up keeps sights high,� he said. Diverse training practices and formats, both club and school, have also prepared him differently. “The biggest thing is integrated training here at Stanford,� said La Tourette. “In preparation for last time it was just my club. I get a lot out of balancing aspects from each program,� he said. Whether that balance pays off on a trip to London this summer will be determined on Monday, the final day of the Olympic Trials. That’s when the 1500 finals will be held. Only the top two earn a berth in the Olympics. The prelims will be Sunday, which should be a mere formality for La Tourette. “There’s always nerves, but I try to enjoy the journey,� said La Tourette. “Hopefully I’ll be at the top of my game when they roll around.� Looking back on his wildly successful four years at Stanford, it’s the camaraderie that he will take with him. “The times we won stand out, but the most fun times are with my teammates outside the context of the pool,� said La Tourette. “It’s the group you’re with all the time. You’re going to grow up with them. It’s the growing up experiences,� he

David Bernal/Stanfordphoto.com

Michelle Bishop

Stanford grad Elaine Breeden will not return to the Olympics.

fly at the Olympic Trials in 2:06.75. In the prelims that year, she was the top qualifier in 2:07.72. On Thursday, Breeden swam 2:12.85 in the prelims and finished 17th, failing to advance to the semifinals and ending her dream of being a two-time Olympian. She was fifth in the 100 fly finals on Tuesday night in 58.43. Recent Palo Alto High graduate Jasmine Tosky is just getting her feet wet at this level of her career, but already knows how difficult earning an Olympic berth can be. The 18-year-old made only one final, Thursday night in the 200 individual medley (for results, go to www.pasportsonline.) along with Stanford’s Maya DiRado. Tosky clocked 2:13.87 while finishing seventh in the semifinals and DiRado took fifth overall in 2:12.62. Cal senior Caitlin Leverenz was the No. 1 qualifier in the 200 IM in 2:10.51 and world recordholder Ariana Kukors was fourth in 2:12.32. Thus, there was a lot of talent for Tosky and DiRado to overcome. Tosky’s other race on Wednesday was the semifinals of the 200 free, where the top six finisher from the finals will help make up the 800 free relay at the Olympics. Tosky, however, finished 11th in the semis in 1:58.91 and failed to make the eight-swimmer final. Recent Stanford graduate Bobby Bollier, meanwhile, also finds himself in the finals on Thursday night after putting together a pair of strong 200 fly performances that included a win over world recordholder Michael Phelps in the semifinals. Bollier, a 14-time All-American who led the prelims with a 1:56.69, posted the top semifinal time with a 1:56.06 to keep the pressure on Phelps heading into finals. Bollier, who finished sixth in the 100 fly and seventh in the 200 fly at the 2008 Olympic Trials, was looking for his first Olympic berth. His top international experience has been a silver medal in the 200 fly at the World University Games. Stanford graduate Eugene Godsoe swam in the finals of the 100 back on Wednesday, clocking a lifetime best of 53.61 to tie him for 10th all-time on the U.S. Performers’ list. Unfortunately for Godsoe, his time was good enough for only fifth as Olympian Matt Grevers won the race in 52.08 — the second-fastest time in history. It has been that kind of week at the U.S. Olympic Team Trials. N

Stanford grad Chad La Tourette is favored in the 1500 free.

THE 1500 FREE World record: 14:34.14 by Yang Sun (China) 2011 American record: 14:45.29 by Larsen Jensen, 2004 All-Time U.S. Performers 14:45.29, Larsen Jensen, 2004 14:45.54, Peter Vanderkaay, 2008 14:46.78, Eric Vendt, 2008 14:52:36, Chad La Tourette, 2011 14:56.81, Chris Thompson, 2000 15:01.31, Andrew Gemmell, 2011 15:01.43, Sean Ryan, 2011 15:01.51, George Dicarlo, 1984 15:02.40, Brian Goodell, 1976 15:03.91, Bobby Hackett, 1976

said. La Tourette leaves a humble legacy and team-centered attitude with the program. “The most important, is feeling fortunate that you can do this every day and work hard as a team,� he said. The opening ceremonies of the 2012 Olympic Games are less than a month away, and La Tourette hopes the long road from Stanford’s Avery Aquatic Center will end for him at the Aquatic Centre in Hyde Park, London.N This story originally appeared on the Pac-12 Conference web site.

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Sports PRO SOCCER

It’s Beckham, Donovan and some fireworks Stanford Stadium is sold out for MLS showdown between California rivals in the biggest local event of the summer by Dean McArdle he stands at Stanford Stadium have rested quietly the past six months, the echoes of Luck-inspired yells slowly faded. But the columns will shake again on Saturday, neither from a first down nor a touchdown, but from an Earthquake. Major League Soccer’s San Jose Earthquakes, that is, as they host the L.A. Galaxy at 7 p.m. in a contest of California rivals known as the “California Clasico.� The E a r t h qu a ke s are leading the MLS Western Division with a record of 10-3-3, while the Galaxy are Stanford Stadium fifth at 6-8-2. “This is the ‘California Clasico,’ NorCal versus SoCal. There is a lot of history that goes with that,� said Earthquakes’ President Dave Kaval. Excitement around the rivalry combined with the Galaxy’s international stars David Beckham and U.S. Olympian Landon Donovan have made Saturday’s contest worthy of national TV coverage (ESPN2), and a larger venue than the Earthquakes’ Buck Shaw Stadium in Santa Clara. Todd Dunivant, a Stanford grad and former San Jose Earthquake, is a defender for the Galaxy. The 50,000-seat Stanford Stadium is sold out, ensuring the attendance will eclipse the Earthquakes’ previous club record of 41,028 for a nondoubleheader match. That record was also set at Stanford Stadium in July of 2011. “Soccer has arrived,� Kaval said. “These are the type of canary-inthe-coal mine events when MLS becomes main stream.� Getting the event off the ground has been a joint collaboration between the Earthquakes and the Stanford Athletics Department. Stanford’s Assistant Athletic Director Ray Purpur worked alongside Kaval getting the event to Stanford, and sees it as an opportunity to bring people onto campus. “One of our goals with this event is to bring the community onto the Stanford campus,� Purpur said. “It is creating a whole new group of people that will see our stadium and maybe leave thinking, ‘I’m going to come back.’� The sellout will be both the Earthquake and Stanford’s biggest event of the summer, and a large revenue generator for both organizations. Harnessing the attention the event will garner is paramount to both party’s interests. “We want to create an ambiance that people will remember their

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whole life,� Kaval said. “Fan experience is a huge part of what we pride ourselves on.� Stanford is hoping the game will entice people back for football games in the fall, bringing in new ticket sales to a program that, until last year, had struggled to sell out home games. “We will have our people out there selling season tickets,� Purpur said. “See if people love the stadium and love the atmosphere and maybe have an interest in American football versus futbol.� The distinction between football and futbol will make a difference on the field as well as in the front offices. Rebuilt following the 2005 football season, Stanford Stadium’s new incarnation is as a strictly football facility. Kevin Moore, the field manager for both Stanford Stadium and the Earthquakes’ Buck Shaw Stadium, knows the differences well. “The stadium is built for football, not soccer, and a soccer field is a lot wider,� Moore said. “Their home field is 74 yards wide and this will only be 70 yards wide.� Twelve feet of difference is still within the FIFA regulations, but it is not the only difference between the play surfaces. Soccer fields are level, allowing for unaltered ball movement as the ball rolls. Football fields are crowned, meaning the center of the field is several feet higher than the sides allowing rainwater to run off. Moore assures that the field differences will not inhibit play, though, and is confident that the field will be player- and ESPN-ready on Saturday. While the game on the field is the main attraction, it is just part of the show. The Earthquakes have planned a full day of events for fans. The festivities begin before the match with tailgating allowed in all parking lots and a club-organized tailgate area known as the Epicenter Fan Zone. The Epicenter will feature live music from local band Melted State along with inflatables, foosball tables, face painting, sign making stations, and concessions. After the game the Earthquakes have planned a fireworks extravaganza, and will also feature a halftime show that will pay tribute to military personnel. “We did everything we could to have a world-class event,� Kaval said. “It is one of the best soccer markets in the U.S., and I think events like this show that.� N

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2012 DISTRICT 52 MAJORS 11-12 All-STAR TOURNAMENT At Highlands Park (North Field), San Carlos FRIDAY, JUNE 29 Game 1 — Alpine/West Menlo vs. Ravenswood, 4 p.m. Game 2 — San Carlos National vs. Pacifica American at Arguello Park, 6 p.m. SATURDAY, JUNE 30 Game 3 — Redwood City National vs. Pacifica National, 2 p.m. Game 5 — Hillsborough vs. San Mateo National, 11:30 a.m. Game 6 — Palo Alto American vs. San Carlos American, 9 a.m. Game 8 — Belmont-Redwood Shores vs. Highlanders, 7 p.m. Game 10 — Menlo-Atherton vs. Foster City, 4:30 p.m. SUNDAY, JULY 1 Game 4 — Half Moon Bay vs. Game 1 winner, 11:30 a.m. Game 7 — Redwood City American vs. San Mateo American, 9 a.m. Game 9 — Palo Alto National vs. Game 2 winner, 2 p.m. Game 11 — Game 2 loser vs. Game 5 loser, 4:30 p.m. Game 12 — Game 1 loser vs. Game 8 loser, 7 p.m.

MONDAY, JULY 2 Game 18 — Game 3 loser vs. Game 4 loser, 5 p.m. Game 19 — Game 9 loser vs. Game 10 loser, 7:30 p.m. TUESDAY, JULY 3 Game 17 — Game 6 loser vs. Game 11 winner, 5 p.m. Game 20 — Game 7 loser vs. Game 12 winner, 7:30 p.m. WEDNESDAY, JULY 4 Game 13 — Game 3 winner vs. 4 winner, noon Game 14 — Game 5 winner vs. 6 winner, 9:30 a.m. Game 15 — Game 7 winner vs. 8 winner, 5 p.m. Game 16 — Game 9 winner vs. 10 winner, 2:30 p.m.

Game Game Game Game

THURSDAY, JULY 5 Game 23 — Game 13 loser vs. Game 19 winner, 7:30 p.m. Game 24 — Game 14 loser vs. Gme 20 winner, 5 p.m. FRIDAY, JULY 6 Game 21 — Game 15 loser vs. Game 17 winner, 6 p.m. Game 22 — Game 16 loser vs. Game 18 winner, 4 p.m.

SATURDAY, JULY 7 Game 25 — Game 13 winner vs. Game 14 winner, 9 a.m. Game 26 — Game 15 winner vs. Game 16 winner, 11:30 a.m. Game 27 — Game 21 winner vs. Game 22 winner, 2 p.m. Game 28 — Game 23 winner vs. Game 24 winner, 4:30 p.m. SUNDAY, JULY 8 Game 29 — Game 25 loser vs. Game 27 winner, 12:30 p.m. Game 30 — Game 26 loser vs. game 28 winner, 3 p.m. Game 31 — Game 25 winner vs. Game 26 winner, 10 a.m. MONDAY, JULY 9 Game 32 — Game 29 winner vs. Game 30 winner, 5:30 p.m. TUESDAY, JULY 10 Game 33 — Game 31 loser vs. Game 32 winner, 5:30 p.m. WEDNESDAY, JULY 11 Game 34 — Game 31 winner vs. Game 33 winner, 4 p.m. THURSDAY, JULY 12 Game 35 — Challenge game, if necessary, 5:30 p.m.

2012 DISTRICT 52 MAJORS 10-11 All-STAR TOURNAMENT At Red Morton Park, Redwood City SATURDAY, JUNE 30 Game 1 — Highlanders vs. Half Moon Bay (Kiwanis Field), 9 a.m. Game 2 — Palo Alto National vs. San Carlos National (Mitchell Field), 9 a.m. Game 3 — San mateo American vs. Redwood City National (Kiwanis Field), 11:30 a.m. Game 4 — Belmont-Redwood Shores vs. Palo Alto American (Mitchell Field), 11:30 a.m. Game 5 — Pacifica American vs. Foster City (Kiwanis Field), 2 p.m. Game 6 — Alpine/West Menlo vs. San Mateo National (Mitchell Field), 2 p.m. Game 7 — Hillsborough vs. San Carlos American (Kiwanis Field), 4:30 p.m. SUNDAY, JULY 1 Game 8 — Menlo-Atherton vs. Game 1 winner (Kiwanis Field), 10 a.m. Game 9 — Game 2 winner vs. Game 3 winner (Mitchell Field), 10 a.m. Game 10 — Game 4 winner vs. Game 5 winner (Kiwanis Field) 12:30 p.m.

Game 11 — Game 6 winner vs. Game 7 winner (Mitchell Field), 12:30 p.m. Game 12 — Game 2 loser vs. Game 3 loser (Kiwanis Field), 5:30 p.m. Game 13 — Game 4 loser vs. Game 5 loser (Kiwanis Field), 3 p.m. Game 14 — Game 6 loser vs. Game 7 loser (Mitchell Field), 3 p.m. MONDAY, JULY 2 Game 15 — Game 1 loser vs. Game 10 loser (Kiwanis Field), 5:30 p.m. Game 17 — Game 8 loser vs. Game 13 winner (Mitchell Field), 5:30 p.m. TUESDAY, JULY 3 Game 16 — Game 11 loser vs. Game 12 winner (Mitchell Field), 5:30 p.m. Game 18 — Game 9 loser vs. Game 14 winner (Kiwanis Field), 5:30 p.m. THURSDAY, JULY 5 Game 19 — Game 8 winner vs. Game 9 winner (Kiwanis Field), 5:30 p.m. Game 20 — Game 10 winner vs. Game 11 winner (Mitchell Field), 5:30 p.m.

FRIDAY, JULY 6 Game 21 — Game 15 winner vs. Game 16 winner (Mitchell Field), 5:30 p.m. Game 22 — Game 17 winner vs. Game 18 winner (Kiwanis Field), 5:30 p.m. SATURDAY, JULY 7 Game 23 — Game 19 loser vs. Game 21 winner (Kiwanis Field), 12:30 p.m. Game 24 — Game 20 loser vs. Game 22 winner (Kiwanis Field), 3 p.m. SUNDAY, JULY 8 Game 25 — Game 19 winner vs. Game 20 (Kiwanis Field), 10 a.m. Game 26 — Game 23 winner vs. Game 24 winner (Kiwanis Field), 1 p.m. MONDAY, JULY 9 Game 27 — Game 25 loser vs. Game 26 winner (Kiwanis Field), 5:30 p.m. TUESDAY, JULY 10 Game 28 — Game 25 winner vs. Game 27 winner (Kiwanis Field), 5:30 p.m. WEDNESDAY, JULY 11 Game 29 — Challenge game, if necessary (Kiwanis Field), 5:30 p.m.

2012 DISTRICT 52 MAJORS 9-10 All-STAR TOURNAMENT At Fairway Park, Pacifica FRIDAY, JUNE 29 Game 1 — San Mateo American vs. Menlo-Atherton (Piccolotti Field), 2 p.m. SATURDAY, JUNE 30 Game 2 — Hillsborough vs. Pacifica National (Piccolotti Field), 2:30 p.m. Game 3 — Palo Alto National vs. Game 1 winner (Grasso Field), 5 p.m. Game 4 — San Mateo National vs. Pacifica American (Grasso Field), 2:30 p.m. Game 5 — Ravenswood vs. San Carlos American (Piccolotti Field), 5 p.m. Game 6 — Redwood City National vs. Foster City (Piccolotti Field), 9:30 a.m. Game 7 — San Carlos National vs. Belmont-Redwood Shores (Grasso Field), 9:30 a.m. Game 8 — Palo Alto American vs. Redwood City American (Piccolotti Field), noon Game 9 — Alpine/West Menlo vs. Half Moon Bay (Grasso Field), noon SUNDAY, JULY 1 Game 10 — Game 1 loser vs. Game 7 loser (Piccolotti Field), noon Game 16 — Game 8 loser vs. Game 9 loser (Grasso Field), noon Game 17 — Game 2 loser vs. Game 3

loser (Piccolotti Field), 2:30 p.m. Game 18 — Game 4 loser vs. Game 5 loser (Grasso Field), 2:30 p.m. MONDAY, JULY 2 Game 15 — Game 6 loser vs. Gamd 10 winner (Piccolotti Field), 5:30 p.m. TUESDAY, JULY 3 Game 13 — Game 6 winner vs. Game 7 winner (Piccolotti Field), 5:30 p.m. Game 14 — Game 8 winner vs. Game 9 winner (Grasso Field), 5:30 p.m. WEDNESDAY, JULY 4 Game 11 — Game 2 winner vs. Game 3 winner (Piccolotti Field), noon Game 12 — Game 4 winner vs. Game 5 winner (Grasso Field), noon Game 19 — Game 12 loser vs. Game 15 winner (Grasso Field), 5 p.m. Game 20 — Game 11 loser vs. Game 16 winner (Piccolotti Field), 5 p.m. Game 21 — Game 14 loser vs. Game 17 winner (Grasso Field), 2:30 p.m. Game 22 — Game 13 loser vs. Game 18 winner (Piccolotti Field), 2:30 p.m. THURSDAY, JULY 5 Game 23 — Game 11 winner vs. Game 12 winner (Grasso Field), 5:30 p.m. Game 24 — Game 13 winner vs. Game

14 winner (Piccolotti Field), 5:30 p.m. FRIDAY, JULY 6 Game 25 — Game 19 winner vs. Game 20 winner (Piccolotti Field), 5:30 p.m. Game 26 — Game 21 winner vs. Game 22 winner (Grasso Field), 5:30 p.m. SATURDAY, JULY 7 Game 27 — Game 24 loser vs. Game 25 winner (Grasso Field), noon Game 28 — Game 23 loser vs. Game 26 winner (Piccolotti Field), 2:30 p.m. Game 29 — Game 23 winner vs. Game 24 winner (Piccolotti Field), noon SUNDAY, JULY 8 Game 30 — Game 27 winner vs. Game 28 winner (Piccolotti Field), noon MONDAY, JULY 9 Game 31 — Game 29 loser vs. Game 30 winner (Piccolotti Field), 5:30 p.m. TUESDAY, JULY 10 Game 32 — Game 29 winner vs. Game 31 winner (Piccolotti Field), 5:30 p.m. WEDNESDAY, JULY 11 Game 33 — Challenge game, if necessary (Piccolatti Field), 5:30 p.m.

Sports WOMEN’S WATER POLO

YOUTH WATER POLO

Stanford sweeps All-American honors

Stanford club teams qualify for the JOs by Keith Peters

Freshman Neushul is National Player of the Year while Tanner is National Coach of the Year again

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and seven reached the 20-goal mark. The ACWPC National Player of the Year award caps one of the most successful debut seasons in Cardinal history for Neushul. She also was named the Peter J. Cutino Award in early June, and was named MPSF Newcomer of the Year in addition to being named to the All-America First Team. Neushul led the Cardinal with 58 goals in 2012, including three at the National Collegiate Championship in which Stanford captured its national title. The freshman driver recorded 11 hat tricks and 17 multigoal games this season. Dodson earned her second AllAmerican nod. An honorable mention last year, Dodson scored 34 goals this season, fourth-most on the team, and was named to the AllMPSF First Team and the MPSF All-Tournament Team. Dodson earned her first MPSF Player of the Week honor on April 23 after scoring twice in Stanford’s 8-1 win at then-No. 1 UCLA two days prior. Other local award-winners includ-

Maggie Steffens (continued from page 32)

Courtesy USA Water Polo

match there, too, when Team USA hosted China in an exhibition match two years ago. Steffens returns for her second match at the pool when the U.S. Olympic Team hosts Hungary in an exhibition match Monday night at 6 p.m. Her older sister, Dries and Seidemann also will play, as will Stanford grad and USA team captain Brenda Villa. USA coach Adam Krikorian was raised in Mountain View. Seidemann and USA’s Heather Petri (who played at Cal) are also East Bay residents, guaranteeing the match will generate a lot of fan reaction. The contest is expected to sell out. “I used to go watch Jess play a lot and then, when we played the exhibition match I couldn’t believe how many people were there,� Steffens said. “It was packed.� The national team is the only opportunity the sisters have had in playing with the same team, which makes Monday night’s match even more special. “We rarely get to see our families so we’re very excited to see them,� Steffens said. “There will be family and friends there who have never seen us play, or haven’t seen us play since we were little. I’m so proud to represent the USA and my family name.� Until Jessica committed to Stanford, there was no reason to believe any of the Steffens family would consider the Cardinal. Most of her family, including both parents, an older brother and dozens of cousins, went to California.

Maggie Steffens “I grew up wearing blue and gold,� Steffens said. “I hated Stanford. When I was little I was a Cal Bear. That was before I really knew anything.� There’s a running family joke that the Steffens sisters take advantage of special occasions and large family gatherings by wearing their ‘Beat Cal’ T-shirt. That would always get a response from the rest of the family as in “what the . . . ?� It was all in good fun, of course. “My parents are proud that Jessica went to Stanford,� Steffens said. “During my recruiting process I was still considering UCLA, USC, and Cal. Once I started to watch Jessica play I grew to love the way the team was run. When I stepped on campus, I knew Stanford was right.� Steffens is the youngest player on the national team, but that’s nothing new for her. She’s the youngest, of four, in her family. When she’s playing, she doesn’t feel like the

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Hector Garcia-Molina/Stanfordphoto.com

reshman driver Kiley Neushul was named National Player of the Year and John Tanner was National Coach of the Year as the two-time defending national champion Stanford women’s water polo team had eight named to the ACWPC All-American Division I team earlier this week. Neushul and driver Kaley Dodson were named to the first team, driver Alyssa Lo to the second team, goalie Kate Baldoni to the third team while two-meter Monica Coughlan, driver Pallavi Menon, two-meter Ashley Grossman and driver Cassie Churnside all earned honorable mention. Stanford went 26-2 overall and 7-0 in MPSF play en route to capturing its second straight NCAA title, and third overall, with a 6-4 title-game win over USC on May 13. It is Tanner’s second straight ACWPC Coach of the Year honor. Tanner has guided the Cardinal to all three of its national titles. On the year, the Cardinal outscored its opponents 342-130, while five players scored at least 30 goals

Kiley Neushul ed UCLA senior KK Clark from Sacred Heart Prep, who was named to the first team, and Bruin teammate Becca Dorst from Menlo-Atherton, an honorable-mention choice. On the Division III team, Sacred Heart Prep grad Sarah Westcott of Pomona Pitzer received honorable mention. N youngest. “When I hung out with Jessica during age-group play, I would sometimes scrimmage with the older team,� Steffens said. “When I first started with the national team that was when Jess was recovering from surgery and that gave me the chance to put myself on the team as Maggie and not Jess’ little sister. I made a player of myself and when she came back we were not only sisters, but teammates and friends.� It doesn’t seem to bother anyone that Villa, who is making her fourth, and most likely last, Olympic Games, is 14 years older than Maggie and serves as team leader. “She is awesome,� Steffens said. “She has so much experience and so much knowledge you would think she knew it all. That’s not how she is. She learns every single day, and she’s teaching every day. That’s a great trait to have and something I want to become. When we’re together it seems like we’re all the same age.� Maggie Steffens has more than held her own with the Americans, who are still looking to win their first gold medal after finishing second twice and third once in three previous Olympic appearances. Steffens led Team USA with 11 goals at the 2012 FINA World League Super Final and scored six goals on the way to a gold medal and Olympic qualification at the 2011 Pan American Games. This year, she’s hoping to share a golden opportunity, not only with her sister and teammates, but also with family, friends and the rest of the country when Team USA takes on the world at the 2012 Summer Games in London, England. N

he boys and girls of the the Stanford Water Polo Club have been busy the past two weeks attempting to qualify for the upcoming National Junior Olympics, which the club will host starting in late July. While the 12&U boys and girls still have to qualify this weekend, much of the hard work has been completed, quite successfully. The Stanford boys have qualified seven of eight teams thus far while the girls qualified five teams in just the 18&U and 16&U divisions. “Should both 12&U teams qualify (this weekend), which I believe they will, we will equal the largest number of teams we have qualified in one summer for the National Junior Olympics,� said Jon Barnea, who oversees the boys’ half of the Stanford Water Polo Club. The best finish of any team was by the Stanford boys’ 16&U Red squad, which took first out of 24 teams in the Pacific Zone qualifying in the East Bay. That earned Stanford the No. 1 seed for the Junior Olympics, which will run July 28-31 at various local pools. Under the guidance of head coach Clarke Weatherspoon, the 16&U Red team finished third at the California Cup Championship in Davis on June 3 prior to qualifying for JOs. Team members include Michael Blach, Stephen Cho, Harrison Enright, Rishabh Hegde, John Knox, Evan McClelland, Morgan Olson-Fabbro, Nelson Perla-Ward, Jack Pickard, Trevor Raich, Michael

Men’s team

(continued from page 32)

Games in Guadalajara, Mexico. In addition to Azevedo (Class of 2005), Stanford will be represented on the U.S. Olympic Team by Layne Beaubien (`99), Peter Hudnut `03 and Peter Varellas `06. The four former Cardinal players make Stanford the most represented school on the American side. After landing five alumnae to the women’s team earlier this month, Stanford, with nine U.S. Olympians, is the most represented collegiate program overall. The Stanford quartet recently helped the U.S. to a fourth-place finish at the FINA World League Super Final as well as to the gold medal at the 2011 Pan-Am Games that qualified the Americans for this summer’s Olympics. Azevedo, the long-time U.S. captain, has been one of the top U.S. performers in each of the past three Olympics. Four years ago, he was named to the Olympic All-Star Team in Beijing after leading the team with 17 goals as the U.S. claimed the silver medal. Azevedo ranked second among all scorers in Athens in 2004 with 15 goals and was fourth among all scorers with 13 goals at the 2000 Sydney Games.

Swart, Coby Wayne, Shawn Welch, John Wilson and Spencer Witte. The boys’ 18&U Red team finished second at qualifying and earned the No. 6 seed for the Junior Olympics. The squad recently finished third at the California Cup Championships, June 8-10 in Santa Barbara. Team members are Zach Churukian, Brayden Curry, David Freudenstein, Matt Godar, Patrick Goodenough, Alex Gow, Mitchell Hamilton, Bret Hinrichs, Harrison Holland-McCowan, MichaelHolloway, Reid Lazzarini, Cory McGee, Ben Pickard, Will Runkel and Adam Warmoth. The Stanford 18&U White team finished seventh at JO qualifying while the 14&U Red was third and the 14&U White fourth. The 16&U White squad was eighth while the 16&U Black team did not qualify after taking 15th.The boys’ 12&U Red has the No. 2 seed for qualifying this weekend, where nine of 11 teams will advance. The 12&U White is seeded No. 6 and the 10&U Red is No. 2, but has already pre-qualified. For the Stanford girls, The 18&U Red finished second in qualifying following a 5-4 loss to 680 A in the finals. Also qualifying was the 18&U White team. Stanford qualified three teams in the 16s for the first time ever in the “qualification era.� The Red team was second, losing to 680 A in the finals, 8-6, while the White squad was 10th and the Black team 11th. The girls’ Junior Olympics will run Aug. 2-5. N Beaubien, a defender out of Coronado who will be making his third Olympic appearance in London, continues to perform as one of the top center defenders in the world. Along with being the first American to ever play in the Hungarian professional league (KSI in Budapest), Beaubien is a three-time Pan-Am Games gold medalist. Four years ago in Beijing, Beaubien netted eight goals during the USA’s silvermedal run. Hudnut will play in his second Olympic Games this summer. Hudnut, who stands a towering 6-foot-5, will use his size and strength to serve the U.S squad ably at the defender position. In Beijing, Hudnut saw action in all seven U.S. matches, scoring a goal in the 12-11 upset of Italy and helping anchor the defense during its run to the gold medal match. Hudnut was also an alternate on the 2004 Olympic Team. Also making his second Olympic appearance is Varellas, who also serves as volunteer assistant coach for the Cardinal men’s program. Varellas scored five times in his Olympic debut in Beijing, including goals in upsets of Croatia and Serbia. Most recently, Varellas scored a hat trick in a 7-6 loss to Italy at the FINA World League Super Final as the U.S. took fourth. N

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Palo Alto Weekly 06.29.2012 - section 1