June 2016 Mount Diablo Interpretive Association: Unmasking the Mountain’s Marvels
Serving Danville Have a Ball – It’s So Much More Than a Golf Tournament By Jody Morgan
By Jody Morgan
Mount Diablo Interpretive Association (MDIA) partners with the California Department of Parks and Recreation to promote awareness of and accessibility to the remarkable resources available within Mount Diablo State Park. An all-volunteer, non-profit MDIA produces publications and interpretive materials, provides guided hikes and educational programs, and supports the work of rangers to enrich the experience of every visitor. Roving docents and hike leaders are clearly identified by their VIP vests. Although they are both very important and very informative people, these dedicated individuals wear the VIP designation as graduates of Volunteers in the Park training. MDIA leads hikers to places within Mount Diablo State Park they On January 30, 1974, might never enjoy on their own. (Photo courtesy of Liz Watson) Sam Stoker, Executive Director of the Lindsay Wildlife Center, hosted a gathering to explain his vision for an organization that would awaken the public to the value of Mount Diablo’s natural assets. Among those present was Mary Bowerman, who co-founded Save Mount Diablo (SMD) in 1971. While SMD concentrates on preservation through acquisition of parcels of private land within the state park boundaries as well as adjacent properties essential to sustaining the area’s biodiversity, MDIA focuses on disseminating information about the mountain’s ecological, geological, and recreational significance. Just as the park has tripled in size since the early 1970s from 6,788 to about 20,000 acres, MDIA has grown from 29 enthusiastic members in 1974 to several hundred today. MDIA President Mike Woodring explains, “The MDIA mission is preservation through education. When we see things where we can make a difference, we get involved.” That response ranges from updating signage to marking the 6.25-mile “Trail Through Time” with twenty interpretive panels elucidating the mountain’s geological history. MDIA Board member Ken Lavin notes, “Mount Diablo displays much of the geological history of the Bay Area, though the history is upside down. A vertical fault under Mount Diablo has shoved older rocks up and over younger rocks.” Naturalist Michael Marchiano gives monthly programs at the Summit Museum. For “Snakes Alive!” he’ll bring live serpents that visitors can hold. Marchiano characterizes the mountain as an “island jewel in the midst of suburbia.” He loves sharing his knowledge of every life form found on that island. “The various intriguing habitats offer a richness and fantastic diversity of plant and animal life.” He urges park visitors to take time to savor and protect that island. “Don’t just hike to reach a destination … hike to appreciate the delicate and delectable surroundings that make up this exceptional natural preserve.” Studying the intricate interdependence of Mount Diablo’s living organisms is a fascinating enterprise. Marchiano relates, “On one of the first hikes I led, I had a
See MDIA continued on page 22
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Even more remarkable than the story of Bob Hammer’s miraculous cancer cure is the saga of how Bob and his family have managed to give the entire community the opportunity to enjoy their good fortune. What began with a simple desire to contribute to the organization serendipitously responsible for allowing the Hammers to become a family of four has turned into an annual fundraiser supporting 30 cancer-related causes. Since the Have a Ball Foundation’s golf tournament debuted in 2005, the non-profit has raised $2.2 million dollars. But beyond becoming one of the nation’s largest privately run golf tournaments, Have a Ball Golf takes pride in ensuring that every one of the 600 yearly participants as well sponsors, beneficiaries, and volunteers feels like part of the family. Given a 15% chance of survival following the recurrence of his testicular caner, Bob Hammer raised sufficient money to travel to Lance Armstrong’s “Ride for the Roses” in April 2001 shortly after completing 26 rounds of chemotherapy over the course of eight months. He was scheduled for surgery a few days after his return from the Texas
Kim and Bob Hammer personally greet and thank everyone at the Have a Ball Golf Tournaments. Photo by Danielle Jess Photography
event. He arrived certain his toddler daughter Shayna would be his only child. An introduction to Dr. Craig Nichols changed the course of Bob’s life. Lance Armstrong’s oncologist listened carefully to Bob’s medical history. In a telephone consultation with Hammer’s California physician, Nichols advised against surgery. In 2003, Bob and Kim Hammer welcomed their son Josh to the family. In 2005, Bob and Kim orchestrated the first Have a Ball Golf Tournament with the modest goal of raising $2,500 to donate to the Lance Armstrong Foundation. Having run golf tournaments for his employer, Bob had Volume VII - Number 8 experience in putting similar events together. 3000F Danville Blvd. #117,
See Ball continued on page 21
SAVE THE DATE
For the annual th Kiwanis 4 of July Danville Parade: Honoring Vietnam War Veterans July 4th ~ 9AM Downtown Danville for more information visit www.kiwanis-srv.org
Alamo, CA 94507 (925) 405-6397 Fax (925) 406-0547
Alisa Corstorphine ~ Publisher editor@ yourmonthlypaper.com The opinions expressed herein belong to the writers, and do not necessarily reflect that of Danville Today News. Danville Today News is not responsible for the content of any of the advertising herein, nor does publication imply endorsement.
Page 2 - June 2016 ~ Danville Today News
By Alisa Corstorphine, Editor
Happy June! Years ago while reading Sunset magazine, I ripped out an article that talked about burritos. The article asked the question, “Who makes the better burrito in California?” It was a North vs South discussion. What caught my eye wasn’t who the winner was; it was the descriptive writing that captivated me and painted pictures in my mind. In the first paragraph the author wrote, “In the North, a burrito is a foil-wrapped behemoth: a tortilla the size of a manhole cover bursting with rice, black beans, meat, and an unending list of ingredients that would empty the shelves of most Latino markets. Buried in a blizzard of guacamole, sour cream and salsa, it’s unrecognizable to partisans of the austere (and rice-free) parcels of refried beans and cheese found in the South.” I have witnessed those manhole sized tortillas and even ordered one once or twice…what was I thinking? I mean, it probably weighed three pounds! The Sunset article continued to discuss the burrito. The author went on to say, “When I moved to the Bay Area and ordered my first burrito, I thought it was a mistake, a misguided interpretation, a burrito made by someone who had no idea what a burrito was. I soon realized, I was the misguided one. This log the size of a car muffler, with enough calories to fuel a 19-year old linebacker, was actually a beloved dish.” From that moment, my vision of burritos changed. Now, every time I see a burrito wrapped in foil, I envision a car muffler and chuckle. That one sentence encapsulated the type of writing I love, respect, and aspire to achieve. I’ve always been a “just the facts” type of writer, but it’s a story-teller’s gift to draw pithy metaphors and paint such a vivid picture that readers lose themselves while reading, then remember those same words for years after. Good writing isn’t accidental. It takes practice and is as much of a science of following important grammatical rules as it is an art of weaving one’s words into a meaningful tapestry. When I think about it, a great writer is as much of an artist as one who works with paint; both need to know where to put their colors, how much to apply, and when to stop because they’ve conveyed what was in their heart. For years this paper has sponsored a monthly “Lost Dog” contest. Sometimes the entries are simple, and sometimes they include notes. Some entrants make up a story about the “lost” dog and where they found him, and it’s always fun to see their creativity. What captured my eye recently was an entry and letter I received. The writer sent a thank you note as they were a past winner. They went on to say, “I am now enclosing this letter in support of my grandson’s entry for the current contest.” The writer’s eight-year-old grandson was eager to look for the lost dog himself, found him, then wanted to enter the contest. The boy wanted to submit his entry, and his grandfather helped, noting, “His letter is a bit of a joint effort because he’s never written a letter to anyone before.” That touched me. I felt honored to be the recipient of someone’s very first letter, and I was happy that the paper could provide a vehicle for a memorable activity between a grandfather and his grandson. I hope the letter he wrote is the first of many, and that his writing skills will continue to be nurtured. While typing is a necessary and required skill in this computer age, there isn’t anything as personal or effective as a hand-written note to convey oneself. Coincidentally, I have recently ordered several handmade items off of Etsy. com. What made those purchases special for me is that many of them came with personalized handwritten thank-you notes from the designers. They were thoughtful and unique, and contained little anecdotes about the product. Some explained how their craft came into existence or special features they wanted to point out. It takes just a few minutes to craft a note, but the extra effort is noticed and, at least for me, very appreciated. To me, it’s that extra little something that confirms I bought from the right person, and it evokes a feeling of connection between the designer and me that I wouldn’t have otherwise. In all its forms, writing is a wonderful way of expressing oneself and communicating with others. Whether it’s a thank-you note or a love note, I urge you to pick up a card and write someone a note today. Make their day, and you’ll be making yours, as well.
T H A N K YO U DA N V I L L E ! For 25 Amazing Years & Many More To Come! We’re revamping our look & excited about our beautiful new patio. Bring your friends & celebrate with delicious food & drinks under the stars. Stay tuned for details on our 25th Anniversary Party! For more information email us at email@example.com
Sunday, June 19th, 2016 LET US FEED DAD ON HIS SPECIAL DAY!
Complimentary Pint of Draft BEER for all Dads!
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A recent ribbon cutting ceremony was held for Fair Chance for Special Needs Program - the nations first after school enrichment program for special needs children, a non-profit organization formed to serve families in the Alamo, Danville and San Ramon Valley school districts. (Left to Right) Fair Chance for Special Needs Program Co-Founder Diane Mazaroff, Current Danville Mayor Karen Stepper, Mayor Steppers grandson Kyle Robson, Former five term Danville mayor Mike Doyle, Fair Chance for Special Needs Program Co-Founder Shirin Kamal.
Diablo Choral Artists Concert
Diablo Choral Artists (formerly Voices of Musica Sacra) presents Summer Nocturne, a concert featuring Lauridsen’s “Nocturnes,” Brahms’ “Vier Quartette,” Faure’s “Cantique de Jean Racine,” and Debussy’s “Trois Chansons.” The Music Director is Mark Tuning. • June 10, 8PM ~ Mt. Diablo Unitarian Universalist Church, 55 Eckley Lane, Walnut Creek, • June 12, 3PM ~St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church, 66 St. Stephen’s Dr., Orinda For additional details and to purchase tickets, visit www.dcachorus.org or call (925) 680-7089. Adult and senior discounts are available before June 7.
JARED HIGGINS TEAM
Danville Home Sales Danville Home Sales
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SqFtBed/Bath$/SqFt Sq. Ft. Bed/Bath $/SqFt DOM DOM 1650 3/2 $558 14 1948 4/2 $488 10 1519 3/2 $683 7 2778 5/3 $500 14 2572 4/2.5 $469 48 2664 4/3 $473 9 2800 5/3.5 $557 9 1757 3/2.5 $544 16 2891 5/2.5 $557 16 1771 3/2 $803 9 2562 4/3 $466 8 2599 4/2.5 $469 46 3530 4/3.5 $618 9 1836 4/2.5 $591 40 1770 4/2 $525 0 2918 5/2.5 $583 7 2409 4/2.5 $519 0 2266 4/2 $583 7 3870 5/4.5 $469 15 3958 5/3.5 $432 25 1769 3/2 $544 6 2663 4/3 $428 7 2952 5/3 $341 3 2545 4/3.5 $477 38 2200 4/3 $750 7 2528 4/3 $455 7 2080 4/2.5 $426 11 2368 4/2 $541 25 2180 4/2 $494 5 1625 4/2 $612 11
Tips for Change
Friends of the Blackhawk Museums present their “Tips for Change” event to benefit the Blackhawk Museums Educational and Transportation fund. Would you like to help some inner-city kids expeririends of the Blackhawk Museums ence the excitement of the Old West and the Cowboys Presents our Mayat2016 Speaker and Indians the Blackhawk Museums? You can do that and have a fun evening at the same time. owee …Come from…. dine at Gianni’s Italian Bistro located at 2065 SanAuthor Ramon Valley Blvd., in San Ramon on Monday, July th Veteran Vietnam 11 from 5-8PM and you will be served a delicious dinner 900 hrs. Flying Time UCby Berkeley theGraduate Museums very own volunteers! All of the tips plus 10% of the take Air Force ROTC, Arrived atdonated for transporting Bay Area kids to the museums. You will will be Cam Ranh Bay Air Base in have ain1968, wonderful dinner and support a worthy cause at the same time. It’s a Republic of Vietnam win-win! Come bring your friends too! For reservations, call 925-820-6969 or go to opentable.com. ee is the author of:
Alamo-Danville Newcomers Club
o Western Airlines”
Are you new to the area or a long time resident, newly retired or empty-nester interested in making new friends and participating in various social activities? The Alamo-Danville Newcomers Club is a women’s organization whose purpose is to enrich the lives of all its members and their families in a social manner. Check out all the club has to offer by visiting www.alamodanvillenewcomers.com.
ompilation of stories told by over worked with at Western Airlines ho were also Vietnam Veterans. o they Þrst manned commercial nited States and then in the mid sition from commercial pilots to e Pilots ßying the C-17 Caribou in nam War. Bruce is a fabulous want to miss his presentation!
“A Salute to John Williams”
Wednesday, May 11, 2016 10:00 am to 12:00 NoonDanville The Located in the Auto Dining Room
Community Band presents “A Salute to John Williams” on Sunday, June hawk Museums 12FREE at ADMISSION 3pm at Community Presbyterian Church US VETERANS HAVE awk Plaza Circle located at 222 W. El Pintado Rd., Danville. e, CA 94506 Questions? Contact Dee at: firstname.lastname@example.org 736-4818 The free season finale performance recognizes master composer, John Williams, winner of numerous awards, including five Academy Awards. Some of Williams’ most iconic works, including music from the films Star Wars, Superman, and Warhorse, as well as marches and other first-rate works will be showcased. Join us for this blockbuster finale event. For more information visit danvilleband.org.
vent is being held at
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e to Blackhawk Museums and their guest. 15.00. Seniors: $10.00
Danville Today News ~ June 2016 - Page 3
Jared Higgins (925) 487-2907
email@example.com JaredHiggins.com BRE# 01781054
Page 4 - June 2016 ~ Danville Today News
Role Players Ensemble 2016-2017 Season
Join the Role Players Ensemble for a season of Theatre for Grown Ups as they present entertaining and challenging plays, and offer expanded outreach to theatre lovers with master classes on the Art of Acting and staged readings of plays under consideration for next season. • September 2 – 18: Seascape by Edward Albee presents two unusual couples on an existential journey pondering the big questions of life in this Pulitzer Prize winning play. (Directed by George Maguire) • October 28 – November 12: Don’t Drink the Water by Woody Allen brings his signature brand of humor to a motley assortment of characters in this oddball comedy set in cold war Eastern Europe. (Directed by Aaron Murphy) • February 3 – 19, 2017: The Piano Lesson by August Wilson sheds light on an African-American family struggling with identity, values, and choices made throughout their lives. This stirring, soul-searching drama won the 1990 Pulitzer Prize. (Directed by Eric Fraisher Hayes) • April 14 – 30, 2017: Laughing Stock by Charles Morey celebrates all that is loved and all that can go wrong in the making of theatre. Trying to produce Dracula, Hamlet, and Charlie’s Aunt in summer stock repertory becomes a wild mix of sweetness and slapstick! (Directed by Eric Fraisher Hayes) Season subscriptions costing $69 - $104 are available. Tickets and information can be found at www.RolePlayersEnsemble.com. All shows are performed at The Village Theatre, 233 Front Street in Danville.
Danville Library to Close June 13-26
Town of Danville Calls for Artists
The Town of Danville is putting out the call for artists with an eye toward the natural world to take part in the 6th Annual Juried Exhibition, August 26 – October 15. In celebration of the 100th Anniversary of the National Park Service, the Village Theatre & Art Gallery is planning an exhibition full of imagery depicting the great outdoors. Show us parks as you see them from your local park to your state and national parks. Entries will be accepted in the mediums of painting, photography, video, and sculpture. For detailed information on submitting artwork, visit www.villagetheatreartgallery.com. An Opening Reception for the new exhibition is scheduled for Friday, August 26, 5PM to 7PM. The Village Theatre Art Gallery is open to visitors Wednesday through Friday 12PM to 5PM, Saturday 11AM to 3PM, and Monday and Tuesday by appointment only. The Art Gallery is closed on Sundays. The early bird deadline for entries is July 1st, and the final deadline for entries is July 22. For more information, contact Visual Arts Coordinator Marija Nelson Bleier at (925) 314-3460 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
• CARPET NEW FLOORS! • HARDWOOD • CARPET RUGS • HARDWOOD CUSTOM RUGS • RUGS LINOLEUM • LINOLEUM TILE
The Town of Danville and Contra Costa County Library have approved Family Owned Business a two-week closure to complete a renovation project at the Danville Library Since 1989 to update aging equipment and décor. The Library will be closed from June 3344 Mt. Diablo Blvd. 13-26 after the current academic year concludes for the San Ramon Valley Unified School District. Minimal library services will be provided from the Mt. Diablo Meeting Room during the closure. Lafayette, CA After 20 years of serving the community, the library requires essential equipment upgrades, and several key areas need updates 925.284.4440 and repair. The project will include replacing the HVAC system, a completely remodeling the public restrooms, and refreshing the www.LamorindaFloors.com seating areas in the adult and teen sections. License# 708486 “The Danville Library has always been a fantastic community resource, with welcoming staff and a beautiful facility,” said County Librarian Jessica Hudson. “With the Town of Danville providing these needed updates, the Library will be able to provide an even higher level of service and comfort.” The replacement of the eight large HVAC units on the roof of the library will require the use of heavy equipment and machinery. As a result, the exterior book drop will be closed for safety reasons during the HVAC work. “While many of us still remember the Danville Library’s grand opening like it was yesterday, the library building is now two decades old and has attracted over five million patrons,” said Nat Rojanasathira, assistant to the town manager. “Improvements to the library restrooms, infrastructure, lighting, and seating will be welcomed by the community.” In order to minimize disruption in library service and any inconvenience to the public, library staff will provide minimal library service from the Mt. Diablo Meeting Room (south side of building across from the Danville Community Center entrance). Patrons are encouraged to place holds on any materials, and they will be notified via email or phone when items are ready for pick up. Minimal Library Service Includes: • Pick up of hold materials • Renew existing library accounts and open new library cards • Phone reference • Return library materials during open hours only (Exterior book drop will be closed) • Catalog computers for on-site account access and/or to search and place holds on library materials • Staff assistance with e-commerce, account issues, and limited reference (access to the collection will NOT be available during the closure) This brief closure will allow the library to provide a brighter, more welcoming, and comfortable space for the Gopher/Mole Removal community and library patrons. No Poison For more information on the project, contact Assistant to the Town Manager Nat Rojanasathira at (925) 3143328 or email@example.com. For more information on the library services available during the closure, contact Community and Media Rela925-765-4209 tions Coordinator Brooke Converse at (925) 927-3213 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you find him and your name is drawn!
Danville Dog is Missing He has become lost in this paper!
He is very small, so you will have to look hard if you want to find him.
To be eligible send a letter telling us where you found him, along with your name and address, to: Lost Dog! ~ Danville Today News 3000F Danville Blvd #117 • Alamo, CA 94507
Scott Tachiera is our winner!
Treats for the Troops
Thank you to CVS in Alamo and Lunardi’s in Danville and all of the fabulous customers who make it easier for Delta Nu Psi to collect “gourmet junk food” to send to our servicemen and women in Afghanistan. The cumulative donations which have been sent total 1,399 boxes and 34,343 pounds of treats for the troops. Delta Nu Psi will continue sending packages as long as American military members are in the War Zone. Much of the food sent is not normally available to the troops. On June 3rd Delta Nu Psi members will be at CVS in Alamo and on June 10th at Lunardi’s in Danville. Collection will be held from 11am to 2pm. Money for postage is also always appreciated. Please help Delta Nu Psi provide our men and women in the War Zone a touch of home. For more information, visit www.deltanupsi.org.
Danville Today News ~ June 2016 - Page 5
Thinking About Selling?
There’s a buyer looking for a home in your neighborhood.
CAROLYN GWYNN Realtor
The market is moving briskly and there are not enough properties on the market to meet buyer needs. Should you be thinking about selling, it would be my pleasure to help you with an overview of your options. Please contact me at 925.336.7525 or email@example.com. I look forward to hearing from you!
Blackhawk Republican Women Present Charlie Self
The Blackhawk Republican Women invite you to an informative evening with Charlie Self, “Dr. History” and Professor of Church History with The Assemblies of God Theological Seminary, on the timely topic of The Future of American Politics. The event will take place on June 29 at the Blackhawk Country Club, 599 Blackhawk Club Dr. in Danville. Everyone is welcome. Check-in time with hors d’oeuvre service will begin at 5:30PM followed by the meeting and speaker at 6PM. The cost is $25. Dr. Charlie Self is KSFO radio’s “go to” history expert. Charlie earned four degrees in history, including a PhD from UC Santa Cruz and a Masters in Philosophical and Systematic Theology from the Graduate Theological Union and Pacific Lutheran Theological Seminary in Berkeley, all while in full-time ministry as an ordained minister with the Assemblies of God. He doesn’t just know the facts, but he puts them in perspective and into historically accurate context. Dr. Self has been in professional post-secondary education since 1981, teaching over 50 courses in History, Philosophy, Religion and Theology, both in the United States and abroad. He is the author of three books: The Divine Dance (Authorhouse, 2003), The Power of Faithful Focus (with co-author Les Hewitt – Faith Communications, 2004), and Flourishing Churches and Communities: A Pentecostal Primer on Faith, Work and Economics for Spirit-Empowered Discipleship (Christian’s Library Press, 2013). Come and hear this history expert put American Politics into perspective. Please make your reservations by e-mailing or calling Jane Parish at firstname.lastname@example.org or (925) 216-6663, then mailing her a check for $25 made payable to “Blackhawk Republican Women” to arrive no later than June 25th at 366 Jacaranda Drive, Danville, CA 94506-2125.
The Danville Area Chamber of Commerce Presents:
Along Hartz & Prospect Avenues
June 18 & 19 10am to 5pm
Classic Car Show! (Sunday Only)
Page 6 - June 2016 ~ Danville Today News
San Ramon Valley Kiwanis Foundation Awards $31,000 in Grants
The San Ramon Valley Kiwanis Foundation has awarded $31,000 in grants to 37 area non-profit agencies this year. The grants will be presented at the club’s annual Kiwanis Grants Breakfast, to be held on June 2nd at Round Hill Country Club. Representatives of the recipient organizations will make brief presentations on the programs that have been awarded Kiwanis grants. Kiwanis of San Ramon Valley has awarded nearly $750,000 through their grants program since 1995. This year, grant amounts ranged from $250 to $2,500, including a grant to the San Ramon Valley Educational Foundation for distribution to worthy school projects that the Education Foundation identifies. First time grant recipients this year included Sentinels of Freedom and Party In-Kindness. Other recipients include Assistance Leagues of Amador Valley and Diablo Valley, Bay Area Crisis Nursery, Cancer Support Community, Care Parent Network of Contra Costa ARC, Child Abuse Prevention Council of Contra Costa, Contra Costa Interfaith Housing, Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA), Diablo Valley Veterans Foundation, Diablo Valley Quilters, Discovery Counseling Center of SRV, Down Syndrome Connection, Food Bank of Contra Costa and Solano, Hope Hospice, Inc., Hospice of the East Bay, Kiwanis House, Loaves & Fishes, Mobility Matters (formerly Senior Helpline Services), Moment by Moment, Monument Crisis Center, Museum of the San Ramon Valley, National Coalition Against Prescription Drug Abuse, Nayeli Faith Foundation, New Day for Children, Ombundsman Services of Contra Costa, Police and Fire: The Fallen Heroes, St. Timothy’s Bicycle Program, San Ramon Library Foundation, SonRise Equestrian Foundation, Teen Esteem, The Taylor Family Foundation, and We Care Services for Children. Funds for the annual grants program are raised by the San Ramon Valley Kiwanis Foundation, primarily through the solicitation of sponsorships of the Kiwanis 4th of July Parade in Danville which the Kiwanis Club has been organizing and conducting since 1975. Grant applications are solicited in February of each year and awarded in May with an additional several thousand dollars held in reserve to provide emergency grants and fund additional Kiwanis community projects throughout the year. Kiwanis is a global organization of volunteers dedicated to changing the world one child and one community at a time. Founded in 1915, Kiwanis International is a thriving organization of service and community-minded individuals who support children and young adults around the world. More than 600,000 Kiwanis improve the world around them by addressing needs in their communities and pooling their resources to address worldwide issues. Through these efforts, Kiwanis International truly is “Serving the Children of the World.” Additional information about the Kiwanis Club of the San Ramon Valley may be obtained at their website, www.kiwanis-srv.org. The club holds weekly luncheon meetings at noon every Thursday at Black Bear Diner in Danville. All are welcome to join the club for a meeting and find out more about the organization.
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Hand to Heart: Quilts and Objects that Celebrate, Commemorate, and Encourage
Visit the Museum of the San Ramon Valley to view a wonderful exhibit of handmade treasures, now through July 3. This exhibit is a marvelous showcase of creative works that embody the spirit of the San Ramon Valley and its generous-hearted residents. Whether celebrating a wedding, commemorating a milestone, or encouraging valor, bravery and strength in the face of adversity, quilts and other sewn items touch the recipient in a deeply personal way. From the inception of the quilting bee, where women gathered to help one another complete a quilt for the coming winter, to the present day, quilters have traditionally made quilts to mark special occasions or to offer support, encouragement, and love. The focus of this year’s exhibit is to share all of the ways modern quilters and crafters are reaching out to friends, family, and the community through their love of sewing. The exhibit will include charity and outreach projects such as unique children’s dresses, pet blankets, and dolls. You will surely come away inspired to participate in and support these wonderful programs. A unique section of the exhibit will focus on woodworking projects created by local artisans to provide community outreach and assistance.
• June 11 - 10:30 to 11:30AM: Come to a talk by Peggy Gipps of Diablo Woodworkers. The Waiting Room exhibit features Diablo Woodworkers and their community projects as well as individual pieces created by the group’s members. Peggy will talk about the group’s varied community activities, woodworking, and the variety of Adult Education classes they offer. Peggy will have with her a variety of items, including a shaker table, rocker, and other pieces. • June 18 – 10:30 to 11:30AM: Come to a demonstration presented by Barbara Mahan on how to make a pillow case dress for the Little Dresses for Africa Project. You will learn how to make the dress as well as be informed about this wonderful project. Children are welcome. The presentation is free and donations of new or gently-used clean pillowcases as well as new packaged girl’s underwear are encouraged. Your donation will be welcomed at any time during the exhibit. • Groups of six to 20 are invited to join special guided tours with exhibit co-curator Alethea Ballard. Her tours will be held on Wednesdays from 3PM to 4PM during the exhibit’s run. To schedule a tour, please email Alice Brydon at email@example.com, or contact her at (925) 837-1339. Museum docents are available during regular museum hours, or docent led tours can be arranged for other times by contacting Alice Brydon. Tours are included with your paid admission. The Museum of the San Ramon Valley is located at 205 Railroad Avenue, at the corner of Railroad and Prospect Avenues in downtown Danville. The Museum is open Tuesday through Friday 1-4PM, Saturdays 10AM-1PM, Sundays noon-1PM, and closed on Mondays. For additional information, please visit www.museumsrv.org.
Scottish Country Dancing
Come dance every Thursday evening, year-round. No partner is required and no Scottish ancestry is needed. This dancing is aerobic and very sociable. Adult beginners are welcome anytime. Classes take place each week at 8PM. More experienced dancers also begin at 8PM in a separate class. All classes are held at the Danville Grange, located at 743 Diablo Road in Danville. All dance nights are drop-in. The first beginner lesson is free; afterwards the cost is $8/night or $6/night if attending a 10-week session paid in advance. Call Witsie at (925) 676-3637 or Kathleen at (925) 934-6148 for more information. Classes for youth are also offered at a different location; please call Kathleen for dates and fees.
Danville Today News ~ June 2016 - Page 7
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In Loehmann’s Shopping Center (next to Lucky’s)
Killer Bees in Contra Costa? By Supervisor Candace Andersen,
Last month we had a bee scare in our County when a swarm of bees was discovered in Concord. The bees were aggressive and two small dogs died after being stung. While initial media reports indicated that the swarm included Africanized Honeybees (AHB), also known as “killer bees, ” tests with CDFA Labs determined the bees from the incident in Concord were not, in fact, Africanized Honeybees. Bees have always played a valuable and important role in agriculture in Contra Costa County. Besides the honey they produce, we depend on them to pollinate fruits, vegetables and flowers. Killer bees first arrived in California in 1994, and since then they have pushed their way north. Their movement has slowed since 2004 when they found their way to Southern Tulare County. Killer bees do not survive well in colder temperatures, which may explain the decreased rate of spread. As the average temperatures continue to rise in California, killer bees have been slowly moving more to the north. Killer Bees are nearly indistinguishable from European Honeybees without DNA testing. Their sting is no different from the European Honeybees; it is their aggressive behavior when defending their hive that sets them apart from the European variety. The killer bees tend to aggressively defend their hive with vibrations and noise 100 feet from the hive or if something moves within 50 feet of the hive. They will chase someone up to a quarter of a mile away, while the European Honeybees will only chase someone for about 100 feet. Killer bees will remain agitated for up to 8 hours after being disturbed whereas the European Honeybees will normally calm down after an hour or two. Killer bees were found in Contra Costa County in 1997 and 2008 in Crockett. The bees hitched a ride on a ship from Guatemala in 1997. The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) came out and treated those swarms. Since then, a suspected killer bee was discovered last year in Lafayette. Any swarm of bees can be dangerous. If you find a bee swarm you can call the Contra Costa County Department of Agriculture at (925) 646-5250 or the Contra Costa Mosquito and Vector Control District at (925) 685-9301.
(Across from Costco Gas Station, next to Harvest House)
In many cases a swarm will leave after a few days, but can be removed by a beekeeper if it is in a high traffic area or in another area of concern. Volunteers with the Mount Diablo Beekeepers Association offer swarm removal services by city for a $50 donation. Their website is www.diablobees.org/ MDBA/swarms.html. You can also find information on beekeeping on UC Davis’s website at http://ucanr.edu/sites/UrbanAg/Production/Animals_and_Bees/Beekeeping/. Thank you to Assistant Agricultural Commissioner Matthew Slattengren for his contributions to this article. My office is here to serve the residents of Contra Costa County District 2, which includes San Ramon, Danville, Alamo, Walnut Creek, Saranap, Parkmead, Lafayette, Moraga, Canyon, and Orinda. Please don’t hesitate to contact us if we can provide you with additional information on this topic or on other County issues. I can be reached at SupervisorAndersen@bos. cccounty.us or (925) 957-8860.
AAUW is Looking for Gardens to Feature on Tour
The Danville-Alamo-Walnut Creek Branch of the American Association of University Women (AAUW) is looking for gardens for our 2017 Garden Tour to be held on Friday and Saturday, May 12th and 13th, 2017. If you’re interested in showcasing your garden, we’d like to visit it now. Or, if you know someone who has a beautiful garden, please have them contact us. The proceeds from the tour are donated to AAUW Fund, one of the world’s largest sources of funding for graduate women. AAUW is providing more than $3.7 million in funding for more than 244 fellowships and grants to outstanding women and nonprofit organizations in the 2014–15 academic year through this 501(c)3 non-profit. To learn more about our branch and garden tour, please visit http:// daw-ca.aauw.net/. Or if you or someone you know loves to decorate for the holidays, we are also looking for homes to share on Friday, December 9 and Saturday, December 10, 2016. To learn about AAUW Fund, visit www.aauw.org/what-we-do/ educational-funding-and-awards/. If you have a suggestion, please email email@example.com.
Page 8 - June 2016 ~ Danville Today News
Stone Valley Middle School
By Jon Campopiano, Principal
What a year it has b e e n ! L a s t m o n t h ’s groundbreaking ceremony reminded us of that the 2015-2016 school year will be remembered as a landmark year. We have said goodbye to our old buildings, successfully transitioned to classroom portables, and are days away from beginning laying the foundation of our new $40 million school. As I near the end of my first year as principal of Stone Valley, I am proud of so many wonderful accomplishments: • Outreach and fundraising efforts: • Raised $1,500 for the Wheelchair Foundation • Raised over $1,000 for Coins for a Cure • Donated over 30 gift baskets, hundreds of jackets and sweats, and hosted a carnival for our sister school Coronado • Raised over $8,000 during our Fitness Challenge to donate to our Ed Fund • Pledge to Humanity club volunteering at Mauzy School during Special Olympics events • Working at the Glide Memorial Food Kitchen • Building a safe and caring campus by: • Powering down cell phones in non-instructional situations. This action has led to a tremendous increase in relational collaboration and conversation • Participating in Soul Shoppe character development activities • Participating in Advisory lessons with a focus on serving others • PTA sponsored lunch time activities with the support of 1-1 sports • Leadership “Fun Friday” spirit point competitions • Field Day • WEB (Where Everyone Belongs) Day • Site Council Meetings • Increasing the teaching and learning on campus by: • Attending and developing professional development with a focus on: • Response to intervention and providing supports so that all students can be successful • Math essential standards • Next Generation Science Standards • Reading and Writing workshops • Staff led professional development on: • The integration of technology into our curriculum • FAIR Act • Emergency and safety preparedness • Tiered interventions to provide students the support they require As we prepare for great excitement for our Spring Concerts, Awards Ceremony and Promotion, I want to thank you for your ongoing support of our school. I am grateful beyond words for the opportunity and privilege to lead such dynamic, intelligent and passionate students and staff on a daily basis. Have a great end of the year!
Meals on Wheels
Seniors in your community need your support! Meals on Wheels and Senior Outreach Services has been supporting seniors in YOUR neighborhood since 1968. Two of our programs, Meals on Wheels and Friendly Visitors, rely on the support of volunteers, and we need your help now more than ever. Meals on Wheels volunteer drivers deliver meals to local homebound seniors through regular two hour shifts once per week or as substitute drivers. Friendly Visitors volunteers provide weekly one-hour companionship visits to isolated seniors. To volunteer for either program, please call (925)937-8311.
Stop by our new office in the Alamo Courtyard 3195 Danville Blvd #4, Alamo
St. Isidore School
By Maria Ward, Principal We are excited about summer!
What a year! Where did the time go? We just celebrated graduation with our beloved eighth grade graduates. We feel so blessed to have shared such a vital part in their educational journey. Most have been here for nine years, and for some families it is their last graduate here at Saint Isidore. We honor those families and are grateful for their love and commitment to our school. As expected, there were many tears during the graduation ceremony from students, parents, and teachers alike. We wish our graduates all the best in their future endeavors and look forward to the days when they return to campus and visit with us, as most do. Our parish summer faith camp will be held June 13-17. This year the theme is “Cave Quest.” We enjoy seeing many different students from our school and parish community come together and share in their Catholic faith. Many of our middle school students volunteer to assist the adult staff and earn service hours toward their annual service goal. Our Pastor, Fr. Moran, also participates with daily visits in support of our summer faith camp. If you have a child who is interested, please call our Parish at 925-837-2122 and ask for our Faith Formation Office. It is a fun, faith-filled week. On behalf of our staff and faculty, I wish to thank the St. Isidore community for your support. Being a Catholic school, we continually strive to model the footsteps of Christ. We believe that parents are the primary faith educators of their children. We would also like to thank our St. Isidore parents for sending us your children and trusting us with your most precious gift. We love your children and pray that as this school year comes to a close, our students continue to live out the message of the Gospels in their words and actions. Please continue to go to Mass during the summer—we hope to see you there. Finally, as we approach the upcoming school year, we are excited to announce that we will offer a Transitional Kindergarten (TK) Program for the 2016-17 school year. The Department of Catholic Schools guidelines state that a student qualifies for the TK program if the student turns five years old between September 2, 2016 and March 1, 2017 (September 1 is the deadline for registering for our Kindergarten program). This is the first of a two-year Kindergarten program. TK will be a 4-hour program with the option of before- and after-school care. For more information, please call the school office at 925-837-2977 and ask for Mrs. Hawke. Have a GREAT summer!
Charlotte Wood Middle School By Christopher George, Principal
The end of the year will be here in a few short weeks which will go by quickly. We will see a spectacular group of eighth graders off to high school and begin preparations for our incoming sixth graders. This time of year is both fun and bittersweet, and it’s easily the most exciting period of the year. As we go into next year, I want to acknowledge the contributions over the last two years of part of our counseling team, Ms. Brook Dalrymple. Ms. Dalrymple has only been here a short time, but during that brief tenure, many of you have gotten to know her for her caring and compassionate work with kids. Unfortunately, she will be moving with her husband to Washington DC this summer. Beyond working with kids, Ms. Dalrymple has been essential to our school climate and work this year and last. She was instrumental in both helping us modernize our systems in counseling and in bringing in the concepts of restorative justice. We will miss her and wish her the best. As we head into the end of the year, we remind our eighth graders that we have many good things to look forward to, and we ask for their best as we get closer so that our entire community has a great end of the year. We invite our community to our promotion ceremony on June 9th at 6pm on the SRVHS field. Other end-of-the-year events include the Promotion party, which is put on by our PTA, and our Field Day, which is put on by the tireless efforts of Ms. Jakus and her Leadership Class. Other than that, we are scheduling for next year and putting in place curricular work that will hopefully help us improve on our mission to help all kids learn their grade level standards. We look forward to the end of the year, and we are continually grateful to our community for its support.
Danville Today News ~ June 2016 - Page 9
Summer Sangria By Monica Chappell
Most summer weekends are all about sitting outside with a cool drink while you wait for the grill to heat up, the guests to arrive, and the fun to begin. Sure, you'll want to offer a hearty red wine such as Zinfandel with the burgers...but what about a wine cocktail to get things started? I love to start off with a simple white Sangria. Odds are that you have a bottle of white wine and some fresh fruit lying around--and this is as easy a drink to make as it is to sit back and sip. In an effort to make the best Sangria, I tested five classic Sangria recipes. After testing, I concluded that the best recipes were surprisingly simple. Here is one of my favorites.
• 1 bottle of white wine, chilled • 2/3 cup sugar • 3 oranges, quartered • 1 lemon, quartered • 1 lime, quartered • 1/2 liter of club soda (optional, though increase or reduce the amount to taste or desired level of spritziness) • A shot or two of gin or brandyas well as other fresh fruits such as peaches, strawberries and apples, cut into chunks
Pour the entire bottle of wine into a pitcher. Squeeze in the juice from all three citrus fruits, and place the wedges in the pitcher. Add sugar and stir or shake the pitcher, if it has a lid, to dissolve the sugar fully. (You can use more or less than the 2/3 cup of sugar, depending on your personal taste or the amount of natural, residual sugar in the wine.) Add any other fruits or spirits desired. Add the club soda to taste. Serve in a highball glass, filled with ice. Keep the pitcher in the refrigerator. Don’t sweat the Sangria! There is not a standard wine for Sangria; however, if you’d like to make a sangria in tune with Spanish tradition, use Garnacha or find another medium bodied red. For white sangria, pick a zesty and/or aromatic white wine such as a Spanish Rioja, Albariño or Verdejo, but Pinot Gris and Sauvignon Blanc work well, too--just steer clear of sweeter-style Rieslings and Gewürztraminers) Monica Chappell teaches and writes about wine. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information about upcoming wine programs.
Page 10 - June 2016 ~ Danville Today News
Monte Vista High School By Dr. Kevin Ahern, Principal
Monte Vista is finishing the 2015-16 school year with a flurry of activities and excitement. With AP and CAASPP exams completed, our primary focus now turns to our Senior Class as we all prepare to celebrate the last stages of their high school careers and their transitions to lives after high school. We will begin on Friday, May 27th with our Senior Awards Rally where we will honor the Class of 2016 with a variety of tributes, speeches, and recognitions. On Tuesday, May 31st, seniors will return from their Memorial Day weekend to the annual Senior Breakfast and Panoramic Photo which will be followed immediately by the Senior Trip to Six Flags, Vallejo. On Thursday, June 2nd at 4:30PM, our Senior Class girls line up against their Junior Class counterparts in Monte Vista’s annual Powder Puff Flag Football Game. This event leads into Finals Week, where Monte Vista will have minimum days June 7th, 8th, and 9th. All of these events and activities culminate on Friday, June 10th. That morning, Monte Vista’s seniors will enjoy breakfast at 8:30AM before going to graduation practice and then home to prepare for the actual ceremony. We will conclude the 2015-16 school year with Monte Vista’s Commencement Ceremony, which will begin promptly at 6PM. Two Monte Vista students and a faculty member were recognized for their accolades by two of our local Rotary Clubs. First Harvard-bound senior Brooke Starn was honored by the Danville Rotary as our area’s FemaleAthlete of the Year. Santa Clara-bound Mark Buesa and Monte Vista engineering teacher Mike Huntsman were honored by Alamo Rotary as the Student and Teacher of the Year. I would like to express my gratitude to our local Rotarians for their ongoing support of the students and staff at Monte Vista. In regards to the past weeks of testing, there are many thanks and accolades to go around. I would like to thank our AP coordinator Sue Threat, our Assistant Principal JP Ballou, and our many AP testing proctors for supporting our students as they took their AP exams. I would also like to thankAssistant Principal Megan Keefer and College and Career Coordinator Kathy Haberl for their work in administering the CAASPP exams. Last and most important, I would like to thank our students for taking these exams seriously by giving their best efforts. Monte Vista will undoubtedly benefit from the high levels of participation and achievement measured through these exams. Our Arts programs continue to dazzle as our school year comes to a close. Monte Vista’s Drama Department presented our Spring Musical Bye Bye, Birdie and Monte Vista’s Choir, under the direction of our brilliant teacher Jodi Reed, picked up another accolade with a dominating performance against many top choirs at the Northern California Golden State competition. In winning this competition, Monte Vista’s mixed choir is now rated the best high school choir in Northern California. Not to be outdone, Monte Vista’s Wind Ensemble and Monte Vista’s Orchestra took first place at the Music in the Parks competition in Santa Cruz. Monte Vista’s Athletic Teams are also closing out their spring campaigns. Women’s Lacrosse’s run at an NCS title ended in the section finals against nationally ranked Novato High School. Our young women played a fantastic game, coming up just short 10-9 on a last second goal by Novato. Their play was inspired and they represented our community in incredible ways. Monte Vista’s Men’s Lacrosse is also set for the NCS Finals as they face EBAL foe DeLaSalle for the title. Our path to the finals included a sound semi-final win against arch-rival San Ramon Valley. Men’s Baseball seeks a final regular season win against San Ramon Valley before making a playoff run and our Track and Swimming athletes are slated for their respective section and state meets. As the school year draws to a close, Monte Vista’s students and faculty would like to thank our community for their continued support throughout 2015-16. We are awesome and your support is a big part of that.
San Ramon Valley High School By Ruth Steele, Principal
Graduation will be held June 10th, and then the school year will be over. During the summer at SRVHS, construction will be in full swing. Our practice field has now become “portable city,” and over half of our teachers have been relocated. For the next two to three years, we will be waiting for the construction of our new three story classroom building to complete. As we start school in August 2016, we will have a new calendar, a new bell schedule, new technological opportunities in our classrooms (1:1), and newly constructed portables. It is going to be a challenging start to the year as we have just a couple of weeks in August to make sure that everything is ready for the start of school on August 15th. These changes represent an enormous shift in how we do business at SRVHS. Change is hard and very challenging for some. The combination of these profound shifts in how we manage our time at SRVHS will lead to some huge benefits for both students and staff. But there are realistic concerns and valid questions about how all of this is going to work. The devil is in the details, and I am fortunate to have a team of staff that have considered every element of how the new bell schedule will work and how we will provide support for all of our staff and students as we transition from our traditional schedule to a modified block with homeroom time and Access time every week. It will make everything work better, but it isn’t going to be easy. Change never is. It has been quite a journey to get to this point, but to make things better, you have to do something different – otherwise, if you always do what you’ve always done, then you will always get what you’ve always got. (Which is also known as the definition of insanity as defined by Einstein and several others!). This applies not just to how a high school manages instructional minutes during the school day, but also to people, relationships, coping, being successful, failing, making progress, taking a chance on something, or learning. I want to thank all the staff, students, and parents who have been willing to take a leap of faith and embrace this change as we move forward. This is such an exciting time. Life is too short to let the chance for positive changes to slip by, and my reflection for the summer as I look back on my year and the year at SRVHS is a combination of all the quotes below. Do not let your fears frighten away your dreams! • If you want something that you have never had, then you’ve got to do something that you’ve never done. ~ Thomas Jefferson • Change will not come if we wait for some other person or some other time. We are the ones we’ve been waiting for. We are the change we seek. ~ Barrack Obama • If you don’t like something, change it. If you can’t change it, change your attitude. ~ Maya Angelou • Progress is impossible without change, and those who cannot change their minds, cannot change anything. ~ George Bernard Shaw • Don’t let what you cannot do interfere with what you can do. ~ John Wooden • May your choices reflect your hopes, not your fears. ~ Nelson Mandela
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Danville Today News ~ June 2016 - Page 11
By Jamie Westgate, Principal
The month of June is here, and summer is upon us! One can practically smell the sunscreen and taste the sweetness of a Popsicle. Whereas most students and parents are eager for the year to end, I can’t help but find it to be bittersweet. For many years, I have watched ours students grow up, and each one leaves a mark on my heart. I wonder how those kindergarten students, who seemed to recently learn their ABC’s, become the same ones to annotate literature, solve equations, and draw scientific conclusions. What a joy it has been to serve this community for another year, and I will look back fondly on some of the most meaningful events listed in top-ten fashion below: 10. A Perfect Match: Hosting over 300 visitors for Grandparents’ Day was delightful for both old and young generations, and provided love and appreciation for all! 9. Our Nation’s Capital: Our 8th grade class had a very meaningful trip to Washington DC and New York City in February where they learned more about our country’s freedoms and our responsibilities to uphold values of character and honor. 8. Heart of a Champion: While our athletic success is not measured solely by wins and losses, we are proud of our school athletes who represented us this year in boys and girls sports such as basketball, volleyball, soccer, softball, football, and cross country. Congratulations to everyone who participated. 7. Overnight Fun: From the Balclutha trip in 5th grade to our 7th-8th grade spiritual camping retreat at Woodleaf, students look forward to bonding with one another during these unforgettable overnight field trips! 6. Friends & Family: Just as our students make lifelong friends, I am grateful for the family tie we have with Community Presbyterian Church. In addition, we are most appreciative of the support of our families, helping us with substantial upgrades in both technology and curriculum this year. 5. Celebrating Accomplishments: We are excited to graduate 48 students this June. Equipped with knowledge and spiritual strength, these graduates can take on the world. They will be greatly missed, but we plan to keep ties with them, looking forward to their surprise visits back to our Eagles’ Nest. 4. Java Connection: Whereas some people need coffee to jump-start their day, our teachers are fueled by the love they have for their students. Our teachers are committed to connecting and partnering with families to celebrate the gifts and strengths of our students, growing them academically, spiritually, socially, and physically. It is a collaborative recipe for brewing success. 3. Scientific Success: We are so proud of our 5th grade “Odyssey of the Mind” winners for their incredible work. They partnered so well together under the watchful eyes of Mr. and Mrs. Shaw who coached them on to academic victory. 2. The Ultimate Read: Studying God’s Word equips every child for life. We believe it is God’s manual for success and ultimate joy in life. Making this a priority in our daily Bible classes not only prepares students for upcoming decisions in life, but it also provides security in relationships, empathy toward others, and joy amidst our challenges. 1. Heart and Soul: There is no greater privilege than helping to shape the hearts of our kids. We strive to have God’s Truth at the core of our program, allowing for an eternal impact. Each year I am amazed by the mystery known to educators: the more we give, the greater it seems to return. I am reminded by the scripture “Don’t you see that children are God’s best gift?” (Psalm 127:3 Message version). Thank you to the amazing kids in the SRVCA community who have been a part of another fantastic school year. May God get the glory and all of you get some rest! Happy summer!
Cinema Classics By Peggy Horn
Cinema Classics recommends for your viewing pleasure the movie Pillow Talk, (1959) featuring Rock Hudson, Doris Day, Tony Randall, and one of my own favorite actresses, Thelma Ritter. The film was directed by Michael Gordon and written by Russell Rouse, Maurice Rishkin, Stanley Shapiro, and Clarence Greene. Back in the day when comedies were nominated for (and won!) Academy Awards, Pillow Talk won the Oscar for Best Writing (Original Screenplay) and was nominated for Best Actress (Doris Day), Best Supporting Actress (Thelma Ritter), Best Art Direction-Set Direction, Color, and Best Music Scoring of a Dramatic or Comedy Picture. This very funny movie is about an interior decorator named Jan Morrow (Doris Day) who shares a party line with a Broadway songwriter, Brad Allen (Rock Hudson). For those unacquainted with party lines, they were telephone lines that were shared. Party lines undoubtedly generated fodder for many different screenplays, but this one is sufficient for our comedic needs. Mr. Brad Allen monopolizes the party line; that is, he is on the line whenever Jan wants to use it. Although she points this out to him repeatedly, the problem persists. In desperation, Miss Morrow reports him to the phone company, and they send a woman representative to investigate the problem. According to Miss Morrow that is akin to sending a “marshmallow to put out a bonfire.” Once Mr. Allen sees Miss Morrow in person, her gorgeous face and gorgeous figure make him rethink his position on ignoring her, and the plot thickens! Pillow Talk is a delightful movie which is hilarious at times, much to the credit of its stars. Rock Hudson is a comedic genius, as is Tony Randall who plays Brad Allen’s friend. It is an additional pleasure seeing the beautiful clothes the actors wear. Watch this movie and see if you don’t agree.
Because Pillow Talk was released in 1959, several selections from Wikipedia’s Billboard Year-End Hot 100 Singles seemed appropriate: “What’d I Say?” by Ray Charles, “Hawaiian Wedding Song,” by Andy Williams, “Peter Gunn Theme,” by Ray Anthony (Henry Mancini), and “The Battle Hymn of the Republic,” by the Mormon Tabernacle Choir.
Page 12 - June 2016 ~ Danville Today News
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Danville Today News ~ June 2016 - Page 13
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From Sheep to Shakespeare --The Best of Great Britain
By Andrea Lucash, Alamo World Travel
I had the wonderful opportunity of taking a Trafalgar tour over Spring Break. Our adventure in England and Scotland began with a tour of London curated by a local expert. Luckily, she had the timing down so that we got to see the changing of the guards at Buckingham Palace. Who would want to be in London and not get to see that? The following day we met our amazing Trafalgar tour guide, Anna, and we were off to the Cotswolds to see the beautiful thatched roofed cottages, the most famous of which belonged to Anne Hathaway, the wife of Shakespeare and mother of his three children. We continued on to Shakespeare’s home in Stratford-uponAvon. This is where I was most surprised to learn the following sayings that are all attributed to Shakespeare: “It’s Greek to me,” “Into thin air,” “Budge an inch,” “Green eyed jealousy,” “Good riddance,” “Dead as a door nail,” “For goodness sake,” “Too much of a good thing,” and many, many more—who knew? Back on the tour, Anna gave us the history behind Hadrian’s Wall as we were riding along in the motor coach. It was a big build up that ended with a good laugh upon arrival. I’ll leave that as a mystery for those who might take this tour in the future! Lots of sheep dot the beautiful green landscape as you get closer to Scotland. The lambs bounce along adorably behind their mums. We arrived at the magnificent Rosslyn Chapel which has a rich and colorful history. The chapel actually appeared in the movie The Da Vinci Code--a fun Trafalgar surprise! We got to watch the portion of the movie where the Chapel appears as we continued our trip into Edinburgh. On our first night in Scotland we attended a wonderful dinner show at The Jam. We were greeted by a handsome gentleman in full Scottish regalia playing the bagpipes. The talent in this show just amazed me: such lovely voices, beautiful music, and exciting Scottish dancing! We even had the opportunity to try haggis, the national dish of Scotland. Being a vegetarian, I took a pass on that one!
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We got to tour the magnificent Edinburgh Castle. Being an American, it’s so interesting to see and hear about these incredible structures since we do not have anything comparable in the states. Certainly for me, the creme de la creme of the tour was Liverpool! We visited the childhood homes of John, Paul, George, and Ringo. We actually got to see where John first met Paul. We stood on Penny Lane and saw Strawberry Fields. Most exciting of all was spending time in The Cavern Club where The Beatles performed. This definitely brought us back to our teenage years! The music had everybody singing and dancing. There were people of all ages having a very nostalgic, magical evening. Heading over into Wales, Anna decided to give us a sampling of mead (honey wine) along with what she called tunnocks or teacakes. I have to say they were quite yummy! Lastly, but certainly not least, we arrived at Stonehenge. It is still a mystery to this day how these stones, some weighing four tons and coming from 200 miles away, were brought there. This was accomplished before the wheel was invented. What a feat of engineering! Trafalgar, thank you for a trip that created a lot of memories. In a short period of time, we got to see and experience so much including little things like a Welsh winery dinner, a ghost tour in Edinburgh, whiskey sampling, and a wonderful pub dinner out in the countryside. Our guide did an incredible job of adding special touches on a daily basis. This is a tour that I’d highly recommend, and I will definitely be traveling with Trafalgar in the future! Andrea Lucash is a Travel Consultant with Alamo World Travel. Organizing travel with family and friends can be fun but time consuming. We have destination specialists throughout the world that are our eyes and ears. Andrea can help with the planning and details. Please contact her at (925) 837-8742 ex. 19 or at alucash@alamoworld. com. Advertorial
Page 14 - June 2016 ~ Danville Today News
Danville Today News ~ June 2016 - Page 15
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Page 16 - June 2016 ~ Danville Today News
Life in the Danville Garden
A Kitchen Garden By John Montgomery, ASLA, Landscape Architect #4059
I am feeling optimistic about the possibility my kitchen garden will be productive this year. I planted 30 varieties of tomatoes, squash, chard, pole beans, etc. A kitchen garden is a “featured” element to any landscape project. Here are some ideas if you are thinking of starting your kitchen garden. A kitchen garden mixes practicality and beauty when designed as a garden element. A vegetable garden and fruit orchard can be a fruitful adventure (pardon the pun!). When done tastefully and designed with intention and purpose, a kitchen garden will produce enough delicious produce to feed a family of four easily. I approach the design of a kitchen garden as a main element in the overall theme of the landscape. Like a trellis, a water feature, or a garden path, the kitchen garden is a hardscape element that you can unleash your creative genius on. The design of your kitchen garden should be functional. It should have a central pathway paved with a loose material such as crushed rock, pea gravel, or decomposed granite fines (DG). The pathway should allow physical and visual access to the whole garden. Overall, the garden’s layout should attract its visitors to its heart, whether it is for a moment of reflection; to pick and eat some sun-ripened strawberries; to harvest bell peppers, zucchini, eggplant, and onions for a grill on the barbecue; or to relish in your handy-work when you see your spring-sown seeds germinating into a future harvest. The pathway system in your vegetable garden should be wide enough to get your wheelbarrow easily around your raised beds. Most successful kitchen gardens in Danville have raised beds, usually 18” to 24” high, to get your vegetables up out of the adobe clay so prevalent in Danville. What you put in your raised beds is also very important. What I do for raised beds is construct them out of two 2” X 12” in height with 4” X 4” posts set into the ground with concrete footings to support them. You can make them in different shapes depending on your design. Squares, rectangles, triangles, pentagons, and polygons are all acceptable. Once they are built, I staple a solid layer of half inch galvanized hardware cloth across the bottom to keep the gophers and other varmints out. Then fill your boxes with a good organic vegetable mix soil. The soil is the most important aspect of a successful veggie garden. Make sure it contains certified organic material. Some store bought composts of late contain low levels of herbicides which seem to retard seed germination. Other composts, especially the ones from recycled green waste, can contain some heavy metal elements. The best mix I have found is unfortunately only available at American Soil & Stone in Richmond. (They do deliver out here!) I recommend automatic irrigation for your boxes. Overhead irrigation can be risky because of rots and molds it can perpetuate. I sprinkler my leafy crops, but drip or flood my tomatoes, beans, corn, and fruit trees. Unless you are dedicated gardener that has the time to hand water your crops, automatic irrigation is the best way to go. All it takes is one hot afternoon to fry your seedlings! Make your kitchen garden fun! Decorate it with fun and funky stuff: a water feature, old garden tools, statues, or whatever style décor you prefer. Make it a functional garden. It’s nice to have a potting bench or tool shed. Even a hot house is great for starting veggies from seeds in early spring. A kitchen garden takes a certain level of commitment, but the results can be very satisfying. I love my kitchen garden. It brings me a lot of joy to watch a seed germinate, grow and produce a delicious side dish at the dinner table, and my kids love wandering through it grazing on the strawberries, cherry tomatoes, peaches, and carrots. A hot tip from your local Landscape Architect: Even though I love watching seeds grow, some of the better results I have come from buying my plants already started. For instance, buy corn in six-packs as early as possible. Buy tomato starts from the Contra Costa Master Gardener’s Great Tomato sale. The results are fun and abundant. Gardening Quote of the Month: “I used to visit and revisit it a dozen times a day, and stand in deep contemplation over my vegetable progeny with a love that nobody could share or conceive of who had never taken part in the process of creation. It was one of the most bewitching sights in the world to observe a
hill of beans thrusting aside the soil, or a row of early peas just peeping forth sufficiently to trace a line of delicate green.” ~Nathaniel Hawthorne, Mosses from an Old Manse If you would like me to write on any particular subject, email your ideas to firstname.lastname@example.org or for design ideas visit www.jm-la.com or www. houzz.com/pro/jmla/john-montgomery-landscape-architects. Advertorial
Danville Today News ~ June 2016 - Page 17
By Jody Morgan
By the time David Douglas was sent to North America in 1824 to discover plants previously unknown to English gardeners, the dangerous role of horticulture hunter had become more of an economic enterprise than a scientific survey. Douglas richly rewarded his employer, the Horticulture Society (later Royal Horticulture Society), for financing his initial three-year journey. Sales of Ribes sanguinium alone were sufficient to reimburse the Society for the investment. One of fourteen flowering currants that Douglas dispatched to Europe from the Northwest, Ribes sanguinium was instantly popular among the wealthy upper class and similarly advantaged middle-class enthusiasts who vied to have the choicest newly available specimens in their gardens. Douglas, however, was less than delighted to find upon his return to London in 1827 that his personal monetary compensation for putting his life at constant risk while improvising wilderness survival techniques in treacherous terrain amounted to less than the salary of the Horticulture Society’s hall porter. While the straight species of this American currant flourishes in damp English cottage gardens, other varieties are better suited to East Bay’s hotter, drier conditions. Annie’s Annuals praises ‘King Edward VII’ as both clay and drought tolerant, but notes it looks better with some summer water. The four to six-foot shrub features dangling clusters of intense rose-red blossoms from February to May, making it a hummingbird favorite. Birds relish the persistent blue-black berries, but humans find them unappetizing. Although credited with introducing the Douglas fir to England, David Douglas was not the first Scotsman to describe the fast-growing evergreen. That distinction goes Doors | Windows | Blinds & Shades | Home Automation to his countryman, Archibald Menzies, who served as both ship’s surgeon and naturalist on several voyages, the earliest commencing in 1786. In 1792, Menzies documented his discovery of the tree now named Pseudotsuga menziesii in Visit Our Alamo his honor, but he sent no sample home. Common parlance, Showroom therefore, still recognizes Douglas’s role. Douglas was much relieved when, after enduring six 3221-B Danville Blvd weeks of weather too stormy to allow his ship to approach Alamo, CA 94507 the coast adjacent to the mouth of the Columbia River, he By Appointment Only finally set foot on forested soil on April 7, 1825. Among the first towering trees he encountered was one he originally labeled Pinus taxifolia (yew-leaved pine) - now generally known as Douglas fir. He subsequently sent cones bearing viable seeds to Britain. The species proved to be neither a pine nor a true fir. Translation of the Latin nomenclature describes it as a false hemlock. Although the cones resemble those of hemlock or spruce more closely than those of firs, many other characteristics cause the kind of confusion that led Douglas to initially call it a pine. The state tree of Oregon and the Northwest’s most important timber tree, Douglas fir furnishes lumber that is straight and strong. A succession of Douglas fir flagpoles stood sentry at the Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew in London from 1861-2007. When the 1861 original began to show signs of capitulating to the elements, British Columbia’s Premier suggested the province provide a replacement. The search for a colossal specimen led to a 230-foot tree, hewn into a 220-foot spar and shipped to England in November 1915. In celebration of the province’s centenary and the bicentenary of Kew Gardens, British Columbia shipped a new pole to England in 1959. That 225-foot flagstaff made the Guinness Book of Records as the tallest wooden pole in the world. Eventually, damage by woodpeckers and weather could no longer be repaired. In August 2007, a team of intrepid steeplejacks climbed the flagpole to dismantle it. As eager as Douglas to acquire horticultural treasures, Menzies managed to botanize in more hospitable locations. He supplied Kew with England’s first Monkey Puzzle trees after pocketing the unfamiliar seeds in a dessert served to him by the Viceroy of Chile in 1795. Five sprouted and grew successfully in the British botanic garden and were subsequently named Auracaria araucana. The species name honors the Araucano People who used the seeds. English collectors found the curiously branched tree charming. According to one tale concerning the origin of its common appellation, the proud owner of a specimen at Pencarrow Garden in England’s Cornwall region was showing his prize tree to visiting friends in 1850. One remarked that it would puzzle a monkey to climb it. Despite the fact that monkeys don’t inhabit any area to which the tree is native, the comment has some validity. The leaves bear ferocious spines. A monkey trying to scale the remarkably open arrangement of the branches would suffer painful injuries.
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Page 18 - June 2016 ~ Danville Today News
Re-Styling Your Treasured ‘Bling’
By Cynthia Ruzzi, President Sustainable Danville Area
For my sixteenth birthday, my mom passed along an aquamarine cocktail ring that I had admired as long as I can remember. The size of the stone rivals any of Elizabeth Taylor’s gems, and I proudly wore it everywhere. I wore it to the beach to match my blue swimsuit, as good luck when I played tennis, and even on occasion planting tomatoes with my uncle. Alas, when I realized the ring wasn’t the right accessory for an afternoon at the mall wearing denim cutoffs and flip flops, it was relegated to the bottom of my Cinderella jewelry box. Do you have a drawer full of old treasured jewelry (single earrings, rings with missing stones, broken necklaces, or loose beads) too lovely to just toss, so you continue to stash them year after year? I don’t blame you – after years of Antique Roadshow and the price of gold – I’m worried that I may give away rare and valuable items. However, in my never ending quest to de-clutter and with fewer and fewer “visits to the box” to reminisce days of childhood dressup, I began to wonder if I’d ever find a way to make use for these family jewels in my life. Perhaps you’re already practicing the three R’s,“Reduce, Reuse, Recycle,” but this month I’d like to suggest you consider another “R”: Re-style. Cottage Jewel, a Danville Area Sustainable Business, is the inspiration for Sustainable Danville Area’s August forum: Re-styling Your Retired Bling. Marcia Harmon, owner of this local antiques shop, is a veteran jewelry designer who offers a wealth of creative ideas for anyone searching for repurposing tips. Marcia is quick with suggestions on how to use a brooch as a belt buckle or as a bracelet, and how to use an earring as a necklace, but she’ll be the first to tell you to consider the value of the piece before re-styling the item into new forms. Re-styling pieces into new forms is an admirable
Rockridge Ice Cream Tour By Linda Summers Pirkle
For many people, including my daughters and me, ice cream is a favorite treat. It seems we are not alone since according to fun facts of ice cream history, 90% of American households enjoy ice cream. Perhaps it is the cold, creamy texture and the sublime flavors that have made ice cream so popular over the years. I remember childhood friends who were prescribed the “ice cream diet” after tonsillectomies and thinking no matter the inconvenience and pain of the operation, it would be worth it to eat ice cream all day! Even now, my husband knows for special occasions jewelry is not so important to me and beautiful flowers are appreciated, but ice cream (and a trip to Paris) are the way to my heart. Rockridge neighborhood in Oakland is a food and coffee-lovers delight with European style Rockridge Market Hall and the many eateries along College Avenue including La Farine; the French bakery famous for delicious morning buns, croissants and brioche (their mocha chocolate cookies are divine); Ver Brugge Foods with their house-made sausages (try the lamb and rosemary, best ever); and six coffee shops within two city blocks. I was excited to learn the area is also an ice cream lover’s destination. Lauren Herpich; owner, proud new mom, and founder of the Rockridge Neighborhood Heritage and Walking Food Tour; invited me on a personal pre-season tour featuring ice cream. What fun! Our first stop was Dreyer’s Ice Cream Parlor on College Avenue in Oakland. It is the only ice cream parlor for the world’s largest ice cream company. According to Lauren, back in 1928, Jim Dreyer partnered with Bay Area candy maker Joseph Edy, and the well-known ice cream company was founded. In 1929, after the infamous Black Thursday, Dreyer, in an effort to calm his nerves, added walnuts (later almonds) and bite-sized marshmallows (which he created using his wife’s sewing shears to cut the marshmallow sheets) to his chocolate ice cream. His new creation was called Rocky Road in an effort to put a smile on his patrons’ faces in the rocky times of the Great Depression. In those days, the price was a penny a scoop. Fittingly, a scoop of the famous Rocky Road ice cream is given on the tour. Another stop on the tour is Powell’s Candy Shoppe. Besides the most
way to keep these items from the landfill, but it’s important to make sure valuable items aren’t disassembled for the sake of art. Marcia says, “As an antiques dealer, I like to preserve the original integrity of the old pieces while wearing them in a contemporary, new way. It’s best to know what you have before you decide how to repurpose it.” Your treasured items may not fit your style as jewelry, but they can be incorporated into your life in other creative ways. Scrapbook artists, collage makers and multi-media artists have long incorporated tiny gems of days gone by into their art, but there are also plenty of home decorating ideas to consider with minimum effort. Consider dressing up your refrigerator with seldom worn or broken brooches by removing the pins with a wire cutter and gluing a magnet to the back of each one. What a wonderful way to mount everything from your children’s artwork to the week’s grocery list. Binky Morgan’s book, Flea Market Jewelry: New Style from Old Treasures (2001), highlights 40 very different designs recycling old brooches, earrings, necklaces, and bracelets, and transforming pretty “doodads” into beaded curtains, petite picture frames, jazzed-up chandeliers, and more. A quick web search of “re-purposing jewelry” netted great ideas for adding gems to hair barrettes, gift boxes, and my favorite – single earrings hung from wineglass stems to mark out whose glass is whose at your next gathering. Even after exhausting all the possible uses for old jewelry there still may be value, given today’s price for scrap gold. Selling your pieces that are beyond repair is great for your pocketbook and also good for the environment. Jewelers that re-craft old gold into unique, custom designs save on mining impacts, environmental toxins, and water depletion. If you’re still puzzled by what to do with an old piece, visit Marcia Harmon at Cottage Jewel. She’s sure to offer suggestions and inspiration for using your treasured pieces in new ways. And if you’ve come up with a creative way to repurpose your old jewelry, share a picture with us at www.facebook. com/sustainabledanville.com. delicious gelato and sorbets, Powell’s is a candy lover’s haven with candy of all kinds. The shop specializes in old fashioned sweets that baby boomers grew up with including Sky Bars, Goo-Goo Clusters, Sugar Babies, and Caramel Creams as well as delicious chocolates and so much more. This small and charming shop is delightful. Prepare to spend some time perusing the unique articles that owner Shahrazad Junblat has on display. I enjoyed seeing the riding boots, cap and riding crop she used as a teenager in Egypt, reminiscent of Elizabeth Taylor’s National Velvet attire, and the collection of Candy Land board games through the ages. Rockridge Ice Cream Tour is a one-hour guided walking tour. The seasonal Sundays-only tour starts June 5 and runs thru October. Departure time is 3PM. Price is $15 for adults, and kids 12 and under are $7.50. Advance reservations are required. Purchase tickets online at rockridgefoodtour.com, or call (510) 6046546. Private food tours and kids’ birthday parties are available. Parking is free on Sundays at Rockridge BART station. Dreyer’s Grand Ice Cream is located at 5925 College Avenue, Oakland. Their phone number is (510) 594-9466. Hours of operation are Monday-Saturday noon7PM and Sunday noon-6PM. Powell’s Sweet Shoppe is located at 3206 College Avenue, Berkeley. They offer Children’s birthday parties and the unique “Sweet Rewards” program, honoring achievements for kids. Their website is powellssweetshoppe.com and phone number is (510) 658-9866. Hours are Monday- Lauren Herpich, founder of Rockridge Saturday 11AM-9PM and Sunday 11AM-8PM. Neighborhood Heritage and Walking Linda Summers Pirkle, travel consul- Food Tour tasting one of the treats on the Ice Cream Tour. tant and long term Danville resident, has arranged and led tours for the Town of Danville for several years. Inspired by the many wonderful places to visit in the Bay Area, she organizes day trips, either for groups or for friends and family. “What a great place to live, so much to see, so much to do.” To share your “Quick Trips” ideas email Coverthemap@gmail.com.
By Mark Becker, GoSimpleSolar
Danville Today News ~ June 2016 - Page 19
California’s Net Metering laws, which are very advantageous to an investment in solar PV, have been extended for another 20+ years. Net Metering 2.0 has been regarded as a big win for the average electric consumer and the solar industry. NEM 2.0 introduces a small interconnection fee, an annual charge for solar “credits,” and a requirement to be on a Time of Use utility tariff (which is usually most advantageous when paired with solar PV in any case). NEM 2.0 is about to become active. If all of the “approved” solar PV projects in the PGE queue were interconnected today, the current and slightly more advantageous NEM 1.0 law would expire. A current “reservation in the NEM 1.0 queue” will only ultimately qualify if interconnected to the PGE grid before the Net Metering cap of 5% solar penetration is met, which is imminent. Even projects without a current “reservation,” which are interconnected in the next couple of months, will qualify for NEM 1.0. Some projects will push some approved but not interconnected projects out of NEM 1.0 into NEM 2.0. Small commercial and residential projects currently have an advantage because of a relatively quick design, permit, and installation process. “Get while the getting is good” is not quite appropriate advice since NEM 2.0 will still be wonderfully advantageous for the solar PV investment and will be in place until 2020. However, NEM 1.0 provides slightly higher returns because there are virtually no additional fees associated with it. “Get while the getting is better” may be more appropriate advice. Summary: There are “slots” of solar PV interconnections remaining to qualify for NEM 1.0. If you “signed up now” you’d most likely qualify for NEM 1.0, assuming your solar contractor can complete your project within the next 2-3 months. Recently, there was an interesting article titled “Rooftop Solar Transformation Could Hurt Solar City and Sun Run” in The Motley Fool, a financial website.The article makes an interesting observation as to how current market forces seem to be giving advantage to local and smaller scale solar companies. The article also questions the potential for long-term success for national solar companies when there is not an equivalent business model in other construction related remodeling trades. The market forces referenced are consumer’s desires to own and not lease their solar systems, the ability of local installers to source the finest equipment at competitive cost, and the superior responsiveness of a local vs. national company. Communicating to our customers a preferred solar panel and inverter product is a part of doing business. A choice of mature, proven technology vs. immature and new technology will always be, in my opinion, the best means to mitigate long-term risk and achieve lowest long-term project cost and lowest levelized cost of electricity. As with any purchase, choose the product wisely. If you choose high quality solar PV products, your project can indeed be a “one and done/no callback” project. For consumers working with any type of contractor, www.CSLB.ca.gov is a California taxpayer funded website which educates a home or business owner about doing business with contractors. There is very specific guidance concerning the California Consumer’s rights, recourse in the case of being the victim of inappropriate contractor behavior such as increased prices for a previously quoted project, project delays, etc. There are also “checklists” to help in the planning stage to ensure that a construction project goes smoothly from start to finish. Solar panels and solar inverter products are not commodities. There are many differentiators in product efficiency, aesthetics, reliability, and longterm performance. Also, very few contractors offer labor warranties longer than the CSLB minimum “free from installation defect” required labor warranty of 10 years. Solar PV projects have excellent longevity. A consumer should be able to rely upon a contractor to provide a warranty for the expected life of the project, which is typically a minimum of 25 years. The greatest number of insurance claims from Solar PV projects results from water damage. Ensure those who are penetrating your roof, no matter the project type, have an appropriate roofing license to do so. Otherwise, you’ll lose the warranty on your roofing product and risk leaks in your home. The electric and roofing skills required to properly install a solar PV system are skills that require years to master. An aesthetically pleasing solar project also takes time and effort to design and install. Mark Becker is the President and business owner of GoSimpleSolar, by Semper Fidelis Construction Inc, CSLB 948715. GoSimpleSolar is one of the very few solar PV installers utilizing both licensed roofers and licensed electricians for installation work, project managed by a solar PV NABCEP Advertorial professional. For more information visit www.GoSimpleSolar.com.
Page 20 - June 2016 ~ Danville Today News
How to Sell Your Business and Avoid the Taxes By Robert Cucchiaro, Certified Financial Planner
Often times our business owner clients are interested in selling their businesses and walking away, but they fear that the tax bill will be so high that it won’t be worth it. When this is the case, one of the options that we help clients consider is the Charitable Remainder Trust (CRT). The idea behind a CRT is, that if done correctly, you can sell an asset and defer the capital gains taxes. Let’s use a simple case study to help illustrate the concept.
Joe and Betty Smith (both age 65) have built a very successful business and believe they will sell it in the near future for approximately $10,000,000. They started the business with virtually no assets and have no cost basis in the company stock. Their tax advisors tell them that they will owe as much $2,500,000 in capital gains tax on the sale of the business. Furthermore, the sale of the business would mean less income for them each year as they both draw a salary and profits from the business today. In addition, Joe and Betty have been very generous over the years and given many gifts to their favorite charities. They plan to do even more gifting as part of their estate planning as they want to leave some but not all of their estate to their children.
One way for the Smiths to avoid both of these problems (taxes and loss of income) is through a Charitable Remainder Trust (CRT). This tax and estate planning strategy will allow Joe and Betty to:
Is it Time for a Review? By Robert J. Silverman, Esq.
People are often warned about how important it is to establish a comprehensive estate plan. But some are under the terrible misconception that no future action will be necessary, and that they can simply place their estate planning documents in a cabinet and ignore them. As a general guideline, I advise my clients to have their estate plans reviewed every 3-5 years or sooner if anything material changes: a) in their personal, marital, or financial circumstances, or b) with the people they’ve nominated to serve in key positions (e.g. successor trustees of their Trust, executor under their Will, guardian of their minor children, agent under their Power of Attorney and/or Advance Health Care Directive), or c) in connection with their wishes as to the key provisions in these documents. Law changes can cause havoc with your estate plan or render it much less effective than it should be. A good example of this is the major Federal Estate Tax changes that took place in January 2013 (I’ve written about this several times in recent years), which presents a golden opportunity for many married couples to change and streamline/simplify their older ‘A-B’ Trusts. One or more of the following serious consequences often result from failing to have one’s estate plan reviewed with legal counsel on a regular basis – before death or incapacity: 1) the wrong person ends up with legal authority to handle your financial affairs, 2) an unwanted person will have the power to make medical decisions for you if you’re unable to make them yourself, 3) all or some of your assets will be subject to probate, 4) your desired beneficiaries will not receive assets you want them to have on your death, 5) young adult beneficiaries will inherit from you before they are mature enough to handle the inheritance, 6) unnecessary income tax and/or estate tax will diminish the amount of assets your loved ones will receive, 7) expensive and burdensome litigation – for example, a Trust or Will contest – will be filed, or 8) valuable relationships among your loved ones will be damaged or destroyed. Below is an example of an actual case I’m handling that illustrates my point (I’ve changed the names and facts to keep my client anonymous). I represent Roger, an only child, whose parents divorced decades ago. In 1998, Roger’s mother, Regina, remarried a guy named Fred. In 2004, Regina, established
1. Avoid capital gains taxes upon the sale of the stock, 2. Provide them a lifetime income, 3. Generate an immediate income tax deduction, 4. Reduce their ultimate estate tax bill, and 5. Provide a large gift to their favorite charities after their deaths.
By working with our client’s other Advisors, like their CPA and Estate Planning Attorney, we put together the following process: 1. Create an irrevocable trust that will provide lifetime income to Joe and Betty, as long as either is alive. 2. Transfer stock in the company to the trustee of the trust. 3. The trustee sells the stock and reinvests the proceeds into income producing investments. The trust will provide that a certain percentage of the trust (6% for example) shall be paid out to Joe and Betty each year. 4. Joe and Betty will take an immediate tax deduction on their personal tax returns based off of the value of what will ultimately go to charity from the trust. If you are interested in selling your business and reducing the tax bill, give us a call. As always, we are here to help and always offer an initial consultation at no charge. Robert Cucchiaro is a Certified Financial Planner and a registered tax preparer. He is a Partner and owner of Summit Wealth & Retirement, a financial planning firm that has been serving business owners in Danville for almost 30 years. Rob specializes in retirement, investment, tax, and estate planning. Securities and investment advisory services offered through VSR Financial Services, Inc. member FINRA and SIPC. Summit Wealth and Retirement Planners is not owned or controlled by VSR Financial Services, Inc. Financial Planning Offered through Summit Wealth & Retirement Partners To learn more or read more articles like this one, visit Advertorial www.summitwealthandretirement.com. a Trust that provided, in pertinent part, that Regina’s $500K IRA would go to Fred. Regina’s Trust was the designated beneficiary on file with the IRA custodian. In 2006, Regina divorced Fred. Regina (who didn’t like to spend money on lawyers) made a critical mistake – she never went to her estate planning attorney to review her estate plan after divorcing Fred. Thus, she never amended her Trust and she never changed the IRA beneficiary designation before she died in 2014. First, for some technical income tax reasons, it’s generally better not to list a Trust, but frequently more favorable to list an individual(s) as designated beneficiary of an IRA. So, following her divorce from Fred, most attorneys would have advised Regina to submit a new beneficiary designation form to the IRA custodian to designate the desired individual (her son, Roger), as beneficiary. At the very least, an attorney would have prepared an amendment to Regina’s Trust to delete the provision under which Fred would receive the IRA (or, for that matter, anything at all). After Regina died, and while I was helping Roger administer Regina’s Trust, Fred’s attorney asserted that pursuant to the Trust provision, Fred was entitled to the IRA. Fortunately, helpful legal defenses make it very unlikely that Fred will prevail in his claim. So, Roger should ultimately and rightfully receive the IRA. Nevertheless, defending the claim has been costly, inconvenient, and emotionally draining for Roger. If Regina had hired an experienced estate planning attorney to review her Trust after divorcing Fred, all of the associated stress, expense, and hassle incurred by Roger would have been avoided. I’m sure Regina believed she saved money by not having had her attorney review her estate plan. Instead, her failure to do so caused Roger to spend ten times the amount she “saved.” Perhaps worse, it caused her son to suffer substantial unnecessary inconvenience and anxiety. Is it time for a review? * Estate Planning * Trust Administration & Probate * Real Estate * Business I offer a complimentary Estate Planning Primer and/or a free, introductory meeting. My primary practice areas are Estate Planning; Trust Administration & Probate; Real Estate; and Business I am an attorney with R. Silverman Law Group which is located at 1855 Olympic Blvd., Suite 125, Walnut Creek, CA 94596; (925) 705-4474; email@example.com. This article is intended to provide information of a general nature, and is not intended nor should it be relied upon as legal, tax and/ or business advice. Readers should obtain and rely upon specific advice only from their own qualified professional advisors. This communication is not intended or written to be used, for the purpose of: i) avoiding penalties under the Internal Revenue Code; or ii) promoting, marketing, or recommending to another party any matters addressed herein. Advertorial
By Evan Corstorphine, Portable CIO, Inc.
Danville Today News ~ June 2016 - Page 21
What if you went into work tomorrow morning and found every single file on your Cutting Edge Treatment computer was unreadable? What if all of your for Depression Without documents, spreadsheets, and databases were all useless? Would you be out of business? This Medications is not a hypothetical question, as a form of virus called “ransomware” has exploded in popularity ArE You Doing ThE SAME Thing among cyber-criminals, and it’s keeping us very busy. At its core, the ovEr AnD ovEr ExpECTing purpose of ransomware is to encrypt all of the victim’s computer files, A DiffErEnT ouTCoME? then hold them for “ransom” until a payment is received, usually in the form of the cyber-currency called “Bitcoin.” ThE onLY SErviCE offEring People don’t usually realize there is a problem until they try to open DEEp TMS in ThE Tri-vALLEY a document and get a strange error indicating the file is corrupted, or they notice a “Your files have been encrypted” message file on their desktop or in their file folders. By then it’s too late. Call for a The taunting messages goes on to say that your data has been encryptfree consultation ed, and that any attempts to decrypt it will result in the total irrevocable loss of everything, and that payment of a Bitcoin is required to purchase the decryption tool. Reports vary on what happens when payment has FDA 4185 Blackhawk Plaza Circle been made. Sometimes the criminals do actually give the victim their Approved Danville, CA 94506 decryption tool, but an equal number don’t deliver anything at all. I do not believe in paying these criminals. Paying them rewards their Several insurances accepted behavior, which means we’ll get more of the same in the future. Plenty ot people do pay, however, and that is why this is a $350 million criminal VISIT OUR WEBSITE OR FACEBOOK PAGE business. For the most part the threats seem to be coming from Eastern www.blackhawktms.com Europe, although many others are jumping on this lucrative bandwagon. Our team is focused on A) Prevention, B) Detection, and C) Remediation. For Ball continued from front page Prevention, there are a myriad of highly technical steps that must be taken by our sys- The tournament didn’t net $2,500. It brought in over $50,000. Kim tem administrators to protect the fleets of computers we care for. Even then, because and Bob decided to do it again. the viruses have become so sophisticated and constantly change, it is impossible to Community and family are the focus of Bob and Kim’s lives. Despite 100% prevent these infections from occurring, but our steps, plus your education, can each holding full-time jobs, they put an equivalent amount of time into significantly reduce your exposure. The criminals have endless time and resources, planning each year’s tournament and serving the community in ways that and it’s much easier to destroy something than it is to protect it. Nonetheless, we allow them to spend quality time with their children, such as coaching have made good strides in assembling world-class prevention tools and strategies sports. As Have a Ball evolved, helping members of the community befor our subscription clients. came central to the mission of “chipping away at cancer one ball at a time.” If we cannot prevent the infection, we want to know as quickly as possible when it attacks. New variants of ransomware are being released all the time. The ones we know of all leave specific trails, which we can scan for and trigger alerts from. Detecting the infection early means we may be able to stop it while it’s on one computer, rather than wait until the whole network of computers is infected. Remediation is about improving your resiliency to the event. We need to be able to return a computer or a server back to a full operating condition in a short time frame. This usually means having “image-based backups” and being able to re-create a fully functioning server in a matter of hours. Recovering from ransomware is not dissimilar from what we would do in a “disaster recovery” situation for a business that had a fire, for instance. For a homeowner, this means having internet-based backups in the form of a service such as CrashPlan or Carbonite. We’ve rescued scores of people using these amazing services, and if you do not use them yet, you should protect yourself with internet based backups immediately. Having your data stored off site is critical. The newer variants of ransomware are “network aware,” and they know how to crawl from computer to computer looking for files to encrypt. If you are unlucky, this means any backups you have stored on a locally connected device also get zapped by the ransomware, which in essence is like (Left to right) Shayna Hammer, Bob Hammer and Sherri Garoutte, Bob’s oncology having no backup at all. The solution is to ensure your backed up data is transmit- nurse. Photo by Danielle Jess Photography ted off site, such that if the worst happens, your data is safely ensconced elsewhere. Tournaments for 2016 will be held on July 18 and September 12 at The protection of your systems is not just a matter of buying some antivirus. Crow Canyon Country Club. Since 2011, Have a Ball Golf has actually There are many other technologies and techniques that need to be employed in ad- run four complete golf tournaments annually, because each day involves dition to antivirus to keep your systems protected. This is what we do and part of two full shot-gun events – one in the morning and the other in the afterthe value of having an external IT department manage your systems. Ransomware noon. Each draws 150 golfers and has a separate auction. Items up for bid is absolutely going to get worse before it gets better, and I encourage you to contact include a five-day Maui vacation and a seven-day Azamara Club cruise. us for an audit before you fall victim. Nike apparel provided in the golfers’ gift bags more than repays the cost For more information, please contact your friendly IT Team at Portable CIO, of registration. But taking home a jacket, hat or visor, shirt, backpack, and via firstname.lastname@example.org, or by calling 925-552-7953. Advertorial See Ball continued on page 25
Page 22 - June 2016 ~ Danville Today News
Cardiovascular Disease & Men’s Health
By Diane Kwan, MD, West Coast Surgical Associates
In June, we celebrate Men’s Health Awareness Month. This tradition began in 1994 in coordination with Father’s Day to increase awareness of men’s health issues. Three important and closely related issues which directly affect men are cardiovascular health, nutrition, and obesity. Cardiovascular disease is a broad term that describes diseases affecting the heart and blood vessels which can affect the heart’s ability to function properly. The most common form of cardiovascular disease is atherosclerosis, which results in clogging or narrowing of your blood vessels. This can cause high blood pressure, heart attack, and stroke. The causes of cardiovascular disease are multifactorial. Major risk factors include high cholesterol, diabetes, poor diet, physical inactivity, smoking, and excessive alcohol use. Many of these risk factors center around weight and obesity. As a surgeon, I rarely encounter a patient who is not on medicine for high blood pressure, high cholesterol, or diabetes. Both patients and friends frequently confide that they are trying to maintain a healthy weight by changing their diet or joining the gym. Many patients joke with me, “Doc, can you shave off a few pounds from my belly during the surgery?” Weight and health are a constant on everyone’s minds, and we all tend to feel guilty about it. But the truth is that behavioral factors are just one part of the problem. We now know that genetics and environmental factors play a significant role in contributing to weight as well. As a society, we have many elements working against us: sedentary lifestyle, highly processed foods, demanding work schedules, poor sleep, and stress, just to name a few. And as a society, we have become overweight. About 2 in 3 adults in the U.S. are now overweight, with 1 in 3 clinically obese. With this comes weight-related medical conditions such as high blood pressure, diabetes, and sleep apnea. Even though obesity was designated as a disease by the National Institutes of Health in 1998, we are still fighting the stereotypes and stigma that keep patients from seeking counseling and treatment. Why is this important? Statistics from the American Heart Association report
MDIA continued from front page
UC Berkeley biology professor. Rather intimidated, I asked him to correct me if I misspoke. When we came to a beautiful Valley Oak, I said that the tree would be a good subject for a doctoral thesis. The professor said, ‘I’m going to correct you. No one could do a PhD thesis on that tree. One species of gall and all of the related species of insects could be a doctoral thesis. That tree could be the subject of 50 PhD projects.’” Hiker’s Guide to Mount Diablo State Park is MDIA’s latest publication. Work on the guide began in 2009 and culminated in 2015 in a compact book detailing hike distances, difficulty, and interesting natural features. Color photographs indicate each hike’s most alluring views. The introduction explains: “The fifty hikes described in this guide represent a cross-section of the 162-mile trail network in Mount Diablo State Park. They have been selected to help you explore the astonishing variety of environments that characterize the mountain.” Each description includes a route map, but the Mount Diablo State Park trail map published by MDIA in 2012 is an essential companion for anyone hiking in the park. Like most MDIA/VIP Hike Leaders, Jake Van Akkeren also spends time on the trails on his own. “As an MDIA rover,” Jake says, “I always wear my VIP vest and greet other hikers. I ask how their hike is going. I stay friendly and informative even when I find people where they shouldn’t be. A surprising number have no map or an inadequate map. I carry the very detailed MDIA map and often suggest people take a snapshot of the area needed with their camera phones which almost everyone seems to have these days.” Roving docents pick up litter and note downed trees and other obstacles. Because so much of the mountain was once private ranchland, old pipes and sections of fence are still being found and removed by crews of MDIA volunteers. Woodring praises their dedication. “MDIA volunteers are focused on giving all park visitors a better experience. MDIA volunteers always miraculously show up when you need them without being asked.” Leslie Contreras, MDIA Hike Coordinator, fills multiple volunteer roles including co-managing the Mitchell Canyon Visitor Center. “On backcountry patrol,” she relates, “I do encounter hikers with dogs who don’t know about
that 39 million American men (or 1 in 3 men) suffer from cardiovascular disease and that every year 1 in 4 men will die of cardiovascular disease. That is more than cancer and diabetes combined. Heart disease is the leading cause of death for men. It is also a major cause of disability and decreases the quality of life for millions. The first step in preventing cardiovascular disease is a healthy diet and exercise. Eat whole grains and heart-healthy foods such as wheat, oats, and brown rice. Have five to six servings of fruits and vegetables each day. Limit salt and fat intake by using less oil, changing to low-fat dairy, and avoiding cookies and soda. Exercise at least 30 minutes a day for five days of the week. These are the recommendations for all individuals in addition to being the cornerstone of any weight-loss program. Often, however, traditional diet and exercise are not enough to shed and keep off the weight. This is especially true for the large percentage of our adult population that is overweight or obese. Many patients who come to see me are frustrated from having tried to lose weight on their own for years, going through numerous weight-loss programs and medications, and having lost and regained weight multiple times. When traditional methods are unsuccessful, weight loss surgery can be a very effective tool to treat obesity. There are several types of surgery performed today in the U.S. They work by reducing the size of the stomach or bypassing a portion of the intestine to decrease calorie absorption. Surgery can be intimidating, but numerous research studies have shown the safety and benefits of weight loss surgery. Not everyone is a good candidate for surgery, but if one has struggled with weight in the past, weight loss surgery can be life changing. The goal of weight loss surgery is not just cosmetic. What we find is that with weight loss, obesity-related medical issues also improve. That includes high blood pressure, diabetes, and high cholesterol—the major risk factors contributing to cardiovascular disease. Healthier men live longer, happier lives. Diane Kwan, MD, FACS is a Board Certified General Surgeon with Fellowship training in Minimally Invasive, Robotic and Bariatric Surgery. She practices at West Coast Surgical Associates & 680 Bariatrics. At 680 Bariatrics, our goal is to offer care that is multidisciplinary, comprehensive, and above all, compassionate. For more information, please call (925) 933-0984 or visit wcsurgeons.com and 680bariatrics.com. Advertorial or choose to ignore the park’s No Dogs on Trails policy. I carry maps of Mount Diablo and East Bay Regional Parks so I can point out where hiking with dogs is permitted. Mount Diablo State Park is a wildlife refuge. Even on leash dogs cause wildlife to disappear, and off-leash dogs may become a coyote, bobcat or mountain lion’s meal.” One type of trail sign regularly displaced is the No Dogs symbol. State Park Peace Officer Cameron Morrison warns violators that “a citation for having your dog in the backcountry may result in a citation for almost $500. If your dog is in the backcountry and off leash, you may face fines of almost $1,000.” Asked about the amount of time she spends as a VIP, Contreras responds, “I have been on the mountain since I was 12. I put in at least 1,000 hours a year because I am doing what I love to do.” As Hike Coordinator, she posts available guided hikes on the MDIA website. Leslie reviews information
See MDIA continued on page 26
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The Eye Opener
Ocular Trauma By Gregory Kraskowsky, O.D., Alamo Optometry
Trauma to the eye can happen in a variety of ways ranging from getting metal in the eye, scratching the eye with a foreign object, or getting hit in the eye by a ball or airbag. Regardless of the reason for the trauma, prompt care is needed to ensure a quick recovery. There are many ways in which the eye can be affected by trauma. The most common causes are foreign bodies/scratches to the cornea and chemicals getting splashed into the eye. Usually the culprit is metal, a piece of dirt or vegetative matter from working in the yard, but it can also happen accidentally from one’s own nails. Regardless of the offending agent, the result is usually pain/discomfort, redness, tearing, and light sensitivity. Most of the time the foreign body is easily removed in office, and patients start to feel better relatively quickly. However, the healing process cannot begin until the foreign body is removed. Chemical trauma to the eye unfortunately happens often, usually from household cleaners. If this does happen, do not immediately go to the doctor’s office or emergency room. The best treatment is to copiously flush the eye with water or sterile saline. Precious time is wasted by going to the office/ER and waiting to be seen. Instead, flush the eye for at least 30 minutes, and then seek care. In these cases, the more the chemical is flushed from the eye, the increased likelihood that long-term damage will be avoided. Blunt trauma to the eyes can occur during sports, car accidents, or falls. These injuries can include bruising around the eyes, broken bones around the eye socket, retinal tears and detachments, and permanent vision loss. In addition, if the force to the head is large enough, concussion protocols will need to be followed. In these instances, a complete check of the front portion of the eye is warranted to make sure there is no damage to any of the structures. A dilated exam should then be conducted to rule out any problems with the retina. If the force to the eye is large enough, the result can be a damaged retina. If a tear or detachment is noted, a prompt referral to a retina specialist for treatment is needed. The take-home message is that most accidents to the eye can be prevented by wearing the proper protection while working around the home, at work, or for sports and other recreational activities. Safety goggles with impact resistant lenses, while sometimes not cosmetically appealing, will protect the eyes from most foreign bodies, liquids, and high-velocity ball impact during sporting activities. Regardless of the circumstances, immediate care is warranted. If a concussion or broken bones anywhere in the head is a possibility, then a visit to the emergency room or a neurologist will determine any necessary scans or treatment protocols. If the trauma is confined to the eye only, then a visit to an eye care professional is what should be done. We can assess and remove any foreign bodies from the cornea and any other structure in the front part of the eye, as well as assess the retina to make sure there are no retinal tears or detachments secondary to the trauma. If a retinal problem is detected, then a prompt referral to a retina specialist is made for any necessary treatment. As with most other medical conditions, early diagnosis and treatment is the key to a speedy recovery. Any time there is any ocular accident, we are available to help with same-day appointments. Dr. K. at Alamo Optometry is your hometown eye doctor for outstanding service, vision care, and designer eyewear. He can be reached at 820-6622, or visit his office at 3201 Danville Blvd., Suite 165 in Alamo. Visit our newly updated website at www.alamooptometry.com, and like us on our Advertorial Alamo Optometry Facebook page.
Danville Today News ~ June 2016 - Page 23
Practice Makes Perfect – Especially in Medicine By Sravana Chennupati, MD
A recent analysis has found that patients with advanced prostate cancer treated at higher volume treatment centers have a statistically improved overall survival rate after a follow up of over six years. For surgery, there is an established correlation between practices with higher surgical volumes and patient outcomes. Examples include hernia repair, prostatectomies, and whipple procedures. Benefits have been shown with regards to the success of the treatment as well as minimizing complications. This makes sense; the more one performs a procedure, the better he/she becomes at doing it. So it stands to reason that cancer centers that treat more prostate cancer patients have better outcomes. But why? Caring for prostate cancer patients requires a multidisciplinary approach including input from urologists, radiation oncologists, medical oncologists, radiologists, and pathologists. Higher volume centers are likely to better coordinate care, particularly for those patients that require multiple forms of treatment. In addition, these centers are likely to have increased communication among specialists leading to more streamlined and consistent treatment for patients. Such centers are more likely to have specialists meet and review cases together as well as keep each other up-to-date with advances. In the modern era, radiation oncology is increasingly a team sport. Radiation oncologists collaborate closely with a treatment team which includes dosimetrists, therapists, and nurses. This collaboration ensures that planning is done correctly, patients are set up accurately, and that treatment is delivered precisely as planned. In addition, a radiation oncologist must be familiar with pelvic anatomy to determine which areas should be targeted or avoided to minimize toxicity. Patients requiring treatment for prostate cancer should consider the overall experience of their treatment team when deciding where to receive care. Dr. Chennupati is a board certified radiation oncologist who practices at Diablo Valley Oncology’s high volume prostate cancer treatment center in Pleasant Hill. His practice incorporates a team of highly experienced prostate cancer specialists who offer advanced diagnostic tools and treatment technologies for their patients. For more information or to schedule an appointment, call (925) 825-8878. Advertorial
Do you have a story idea or sporting news? Call us at 925.405.6397 or email us at Editor@YourMonthlyPaper.com.
Search and Rescue
The Contra Costa County Sheriff’s Search and Rescue Team needs volunteer members to respond to missing person incidents, disasters, and other critical incidents. Team members are on call 24/7 year-round. The program provides required training; including wilderness traveling, first aid, map and compass usage, tracking disaster response, and search skills; and may also include special training for canine, equestrian, technical, mountain bike, or other rescue skills. For information and applications, visit www. contracostasar.org or call (925) 646-4461.
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Page 24 - June 2016 ~ Danville Today News
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Healing with Minimal Scarring
By Barbara Persons, MD, Persons Plastic Surgery, Inc.
As summer approaches, I find that my practice is busier than ever. Most people would think that plastic surgeons become busy in the summer because that’s the time of year when people want to look better in a bathing suit. While it’s true that summer does bring people into my office looking to enhance their appearance through cosmetic surgery, summer is also the time of year when I see more patients after being involved in an accident. Local emergency rooms are packed in the summertime with people who have been involved in accidents while participating in warm weather activities such as swimming, hiking, and biking. I have spent years during my training in trauma centers and emergency rooms, working in high-pressure situations, focusing my attention on saving lives and ensuring that patients are not at risk of serious illness or infection. My advanced training in aesthetics is an added benefit my patients receive. For example, repairs to facial lacerations from a biking accident can be done in a way that leaves minimal scarring. Please use me as a resource and give me a call, especially when kids are involved. I would be happy to help. Recently my patient’s sister was involved in a car accident. She was taken by ambulance to the emergency room where they made sure she had no major injuries and evaluated her for a number of horrible lacerations on her forearm. My staff and I told our patient to call us if there was anything we could do for her sister. Two days later we were asked to take a look at her sister’s arm because it was painful and oozing. The woman had baseball type stitches in the largest laceration and 17 centimeters of cuts in a star-like pattern on her forearm. During my fellowship in hand and microsurgery, and other advanced training in cosmetic and maxillofacial surgery, I repaired countless traumatic injuries very similar to this woman’s. I consulted with her, and we agreed on a course of treatment that involved replacing the baseball stitches with 100 finer carefully placed sutures that will result in a more aesthetically pleasing and less painful repair. The result for this began with a consultation that allowed me to
improve her situation and offer her a more aesthetically pleasing result in my office … away from the long lines and crowds of the typical ER. As a mother I know first hand that the emotions involved when your child is injured are amplified on an exponential scale. The injury (especially facial laceration) itself is traumatic enough, but add to that a lengthy wait time in an unfamiliar environment, and what is already a scary experience can become almost unbearable. I treasure my involvement in this community, and I want to be used as a primary resource for these types of injuries. Please call me and I will ensure that it will be a calm and comfortable experience for your child. Most importantly, the injury will be optimally repaired the first time, avoiding the need for future scar revision. An additional note - It is a common misconception that lacerations must be repaired immediately. In some cases, if the laceration is cleaned well and kept moist, excellent results can be achieved days after the initial injury. Common sense must prevail with all bites, cuts, scrapes, or burns. Elevate and apply pressure for bleeding, ensure safety of the environment, and call 911 if there is a life-threatening emergency. The paramedics in our area are fantastic! Keep in mind that our office accepts most insurance plans, and even on a cash payment basis treatment at our office is likely to be a less expensive option. As always, it is my pleasure to offer my expertise, and I look forward to consulting with you soon. Wishing everyone a safe and happy summer season. Barbara L. Persons, MD is a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon and owns Persons Plastic Surgery, Inc. located at 911 Moraga Rd, Suite 205 in Lafayette. She may be reached at 925.283.4012 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Advertorial
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By Timothy Leach, MD, FACOG, CNMP
Last week I got a nice letter from a respected colleague who read April’s “Menopause Matters.” He sent me a copy of his thoughtful summary regarding the Women’s Health Initiative’s (WHI) findings for postmenopausal women using estrogen and breast cancer risk. You will remember that the WHI was the first and only randomized control trial in low-risk women comparing women using E+P vs. E alone versus no hormones. This month I wanted to share my summary of a North American Menopause Society (NAMS) “Practice Pearl” (released 5/5/2016) titled “Use of Systemic Hormone Therapy in BRCA Mutation Carriers” by Susan Domchek MD and Andrew Kaunitz MD. BRCA patients are women high-risk for breast and ovarian cancer because of a gene they inherited from either their mother or father. By age 70, women with BRCA 1 or 2 gene, risk for breast cancer is 60% and 50% respectively, and ovarian cancer 49% and 18% respectively. Since these women are at such high risk for ovarian cancer, they are encouraged to undergo an early menopause. When premenopausal women have both tubes and ovaries removed, it reduces ovarian cancer risk by 75% and breast cancer by 47%. Women mutation carriers with no personal history of breast cancer or ovarian cancer (known as previvors in the BRCA community) are encouraged to complete childbearing and undergo risk reducing surgery (removing both tubes and ovaries /BSO) resulting in menopause by age 35-40. Without the use of systemic hormone therapy (HT), young surgically menopausal women in observational trials appear to have an elevated risk for cognitive impairment and dementia. In addition, hot flashes are often more severe, and risk for osteoporosis and cardiovascular disease may be elevated in women with early induced menopause who are not treated with HT. Accordingly, in the absence of contraindications, use of systemic HT should be considered for women with early menopause and generally should be continued at least until the normal age of menopause, ~51 years old. Assessing the safety of HT in BRCA previvors with intact breasts. Randomized trials to inform decision-making regarding use of HT in previvors have not been performed. However, three observational trials address the risk of breast cancer with the use of systemic HT in menopausal previvors with intact breasts. A 2005 study followed 462 women with BRCA 1&2, 155 of whom underwent BSO of which 60% (93) initiated HT; 7% of those who had not undergone BSO used HT. With a mean follow up of 3.6 years, the researchers observed that BSO was associated with a 60% reduced risk for breast cancer, with a similar risk reduction whether a women used HT or not. A case-control study published in 2008 assessed 472 menopausal BRCA1 carriers, 50% diagnosed with breast cancer (cases) and 50% were previvors (controls). Approximately 75% of cases and controls had undergone spontaneous menopause. There was a history of prior and current HT use in 20% and 29% of cases and controls, respectively. Accordingly, HT use was associated with a 43% reduction in the risk of breast cancer. Mean duration of HT was 3.9 years and duration of HT was not significantly associated with risk of breast cancer. Use of ET vs. EPT showed no differences. A 2011 study by Rebbeck assessed the risk of breast cancer in 1,299 previvors with BRCA 1 or 2 who underwent BSO compared to women who did not have surgery. Women using HT postoperatively were followed for mean of 5 years. Compared with nonusers who had not undergone BSO, HT use among women who underwent BSO was not associated with an elevated risk for breast cancer. As with case control studies, women with BRCA 1 undergoing BSO, use of systemic HT was associated with 48% reduced risk for breast cancer. The three studies cited are limited by their observational design, size, and limited duration of follow-up. Nonetheless, these reports provide some reassurance for clinicians and previvors that the use of systemic HT does not substantially increase breast cancer risk in BRCA 1&2 mutation carriers with intact breasts. Think of what this means to low-risk women considering the use of systemic HT. I will post the original NAMS article summarized here along with Menopause Matters columns’ on my Facebook page @ Timothy A Leach MD. More will come next month on WHI and HRT, and then in July I will be attending a two day conference at UCSF on osteoporosis and will share over the summer what’s new to protect your bones. Tell your friends that “Menopause Matters!” Visit my website at www.leachobgyn.com for links to resources and our Facebook page: Timothy Leach MD for more information. My office is located at 110 Tampico, Suite 210 in Walnut Creek. Please call us at 925-935-6952. Advertorial
Danville Today News ~ June 2016 - Page 25
Ball continued from page 21
additional perks is not what keeps people coming back. Jim Bouquin, Executive Director of Cancer Support Community of Walnut Creek, explains the appeal. “People keep coming back to ‘Have a Ball’ for the great time and for the cause, but also for the sense of community – and the personal connection with Bob and Kim.” He continues, “It’s more than a golf tournament. Ask the 300 people at each tournament why they’re there, and most will say, ‘I’m a friend of Bob’s.’ I didn’t know that anyone could have so many friends.” Today the majority of cancer organizations the foundation supports are local. Bob notes, “Being able to personally hand a check to someone like Jim Bouquin is very different from giving to a national organization. For a $75,000 donation to the Lance Armstrong Foundation, for example, you get: ‘Thanks and here’s your receipt.’ With a local organization like the Cancer Support Community in Walnut Creek, you get personal follow-up on exactly how your money is being used.” Cancer Support Community provides services free of charge each year to over 2,000 East Bay cancer patients and their families to supplement medical care with counseling, support groups, nutrition, exercise, and education programs. Kim Bellinger, External Relations Director for John Muir Health Foundation, began working with the Hammers in late 2009. Once a year (and sometimes more often) they get together to discuss the best use of Have a Ball’s donations. Bellinger writes: “To date, the Hammers and Have a Ball Foundation have made contributions totaling $85,000 to support John Muir Health. Over the years, these funds have supported adult and children’s cancer programs and services, and provided capital funding to help build Contra Costa’s first, and only, Pediatric Intensive Care Unit.” Bellinger adds: “The Hammers are a wonderful family and are dedicated to supporting the community in which they live, which is a perfect match to John Muir Health as we are dedicated to improving the health of the communities we serve.” Since moving to Danville in 2008, the Hammers have run Have a Ball out of their garage and home offices. Each event takes about 14 months to arrange. In 2015 Have a Ball involved 214 corporations overall with 56 corporate sponsors, 55 hole sponsors, and 48 hole vendors and raised $310,000. The day of the tournament, Bob gets up at 3AM and returns to bed no earlier than 1:45AM. Kim and Bob are on the course all day thanking everyone. Shayna and Josh have grown up working beside their parents. Kim Hammer relates: “Our kids are with us all day at the tournaments, welcoming and thanking everyone. A few years ago our daughter, who is now 16, stopped me after coming off the course. ‘Mom I need to talk to you. I am so sorry I haven’t been more involved and complained when you and dad were so busy getting ready for the tournaments. I never realized how special this event is. I am so glad you are my parents and so proud of the work that you and dad have done to fight cancer.’ Needless to say we had a tearful hug. Her insight has opened up a whole new world of philanthropy for her.” Bob Hammer refers to Jim Bouquin as a mentor who helped him understand how to organize a successful non-profit. Jim insists they are thought partners and their relationship is one of mutual inspiration. “Bob and Kim have taken their personal experience and turned it into a transformational experience for the entire community,” “Everything Bob does is from the heart,” Bouquin says. “He was honored at an event we had for cancer survivors. He spoke about his own experiences and connected with folks there as deeply as I have ever seen. He had 200 patients and survivors laughing and in tears, resonating with every word. He just has a way of reaching people.” Admirers describe Bob and Kim as down-to-earth and unassuming. Their warmth and personal interest in everyone connected with the tournaments keeps the whole crowd coming back. Kim Hammer remarks, “Our participants, sponsors, donors, and volunteers all enjoy being a part of our event while raising money to fight cancer. Every year we hear, ‘Thank you for a great time; we can’t wait till next year.’” Have a Ball Foundation awards include 2013 Diablo Magazine Threads of Hope Award, 2013 KPIX CBS5 Jefferson Award, 2012 State Farm and San Francisco Giants Go to Bat for Your Community Award, 2011 San Francisco 49ers Community QB, 2011 and 2007 Breakaway From Cancer Northern California Survivor Making a Difference, and 2010 American Cancer Society Bay Area Gala Honoree. Want to get involved? Visit www.haveaballgolf.com or email email@example.com.
Page 26 - June 2016 ~ Danville Today News
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including distance to be traveled, estimated time on the trail, and elevation change indicating the outing’s level of difficulty. Leaders write descriptions reflecting their personal style of presentation. Lavin writes about his recent May 8th plan: “Mother Earth’s natural beauty is on display this day, and the old girl can still strut her stuff. Our wild flower saunter will follow in the footsteps and pawprints of 19th century explorer David Douglas and his faithful dog Billy.” He enjoys sharing amusing anecdotes, information about how wildflowers came to be named, and facts about how Native Americans used plants found on Mount Diablo. “I find people who come on MDIA hikes are interested in learning about the mountain and the outdoors. And I always learn something from them.” Van Akkeren agrees. “At the beginning of each hike, I ask participants to introduce themselves and let the group know if they have any particular expertise that they could share during the hike. At various times, I’ve had experts on geology, mushrooms, chaparral, wildflowers, insects, and birds join us.” Guided hikes promote a spirit of camaraderie, sometimes leading to lasting friendships. “Many people don’t have the confidence to hike on their own,” Jake notes. “I am gratified to lead people to areas of the mountain they would never otherwise enjoy.” A professional geologist, Phil Reed has become an expert on the flora of Mount Diablo. “Once I Endemic to Mount Diablo, the Globe Lily (Calochortus pulchellus) learned everylights up the landscape. (photo by Mike Woodring) thing I wanted to know about the rock formations on Mount Diablo, I wanted to study something else. Birders tried to get me interested in birds, but every time one was pointed out to me it took flight before I could study it. Rocks don’t move. I appreciate being able to take my time. So I turned to teaching myself about wildflowers.” Popular evening hikes include the Summer Solstice Stroll on June 18 where participants will be “on the look out for critters that … slither, swim, flap, hoot, burrow, and even glow in the dark.” Black lights carried by guides may light up an entire hillside of glowing scorpions. Late summer-early fall Tarantula Hikes are a family favorite. Male tarantulas leave their burrows with only one purpose – to mate and die happy. There’s a 90% certainty of viewing one or more of the arachnids and a 100% certainty of learning about their lifecycle. Some hikes are posted last minute, so keep checking www.mdia.org. Private guided hikes and programs for scouts, schools, and youth and adult groups are available.
Hospice Volunteers Needed
Hospice of the East Bay is seeking volunteers to assist Hospice patients and their caregivers. Opportunities include: • Licensed Hair Stylists to offer hair cuts and styling • Certified Massage Therapists to provide massage therapy • Administrative Support Volunteers to assist in the Pleasant Hill office • Thrift Shoppe Volunteers to work in one of the organization’s five stores which are located in Alamo, Concord, Martinez, Danville, and Walnut Creek. • Bereavement Support Volunteers to provide support to family members after their loved one has died • Patient Support Volunteers to provide companionship and practical assistance To apply for free training, call Hospice at (925) 887-5678 and ask for the Volunteer Department, or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Established in 1977, Hospice of the East Bay is a not-for-profit agency that helps people cope with end of life by providing medical, emotional, spiritual, and practical support for patients and families, regardless of their ability to pay. To learn more or to make a donation of time or money, please contact (925) 887-5678 or visit www.hospiceeastbay.org.
Facelift Not For You? By Dr. Jerome Potozkin
“I want to look my best but don’t want a facelift or any invasive surgery.” Specializing in minimally invasive cosmetic surgery, this is something I hear in my office every day. There is great demand for non-invasive cosmetic procedures which has resulted in newer innovative techniques and procedures. New injectables and devices have become available within the past year or two. I will highlight some of the more popular ones. We have come a long way with what we can do with injectable medications and devices compared to the old collagen days. Juvederm Voluma has been available in the United States for over two years. This unique hyaluronic acid filler has unique lifting properties and lasts up to two years. It is injected deep in the skin, sometimes just above the cheek bones. When done properly, this can result in a natural, more youthful look. Most patients I see are worried that they will have large, overfilled, strange-looking cheeks. This can occur if one overfills. The goal is to create a natural look. I believe that if your face shows that you have had treatments that are very obvious, then you would be better off with no treatments at all. With Juvederm Voluma there is an enzyme that can be injected into the skin to melt it away if one is not pleased with the results. I have never had this request from a patient that I injected with Juvederm Voluma. However, it is available just in case. Kybella is another injectable that was FDA approved last year. This medication is comprised of deoxycholic acid. It can literally melt the submental fat (fat under your chin and neck). I was fortunate to be selected as one of the first physicians trained in the use of Kybella. Most people will require four treatments spaced one month apart. There can be significant swelling, so I would not recommend this treatment before an important social event. This treatment can be life changing for some. I recently saw one of my patients who received four treatments. When we examined her before and after photos, they were as good as one would expect with a facelift. Not everyone will have results like that. An alternative to Kybella for submental fat is CoolSculpting with the Cool Mini. This treatment destroys fat cells by freezing them. Fat cells are more sensitive to cold temperatures than surrounding skin, so the fat is destroyed while skin remains unharmed. Two treatments spaced about a month apart are usually required, and results are seen in one to three months. Our most popular alternative to a facelift is Ultherapy. Ultherapy is a device that employs micro-focused ultrasound to heat deep in the tissue. This results in a microscopic wound that can stimulate collagen and tighten skin. With this procedure, people usually don’t need to take time off from work. The downside of the treatment is that it will not produce results equivalent to a facelift. The results can also be somewhat variable from one person to the next where employing the same treatment protocol one person can see dramatic changes and other not as much. Of course there are many other injectable, laser, and light based treatments that we offer in our fully accredited laser center here in Danville. If you are interested in exploring any of these options, feel free to call us today to schedule a consultation. We are committed to helping you look your best! Dr. Potozkin is a board certified dermatologist who has been serving the local community since 1993. His fully accredited dermatological and laser facility is located at 600 San Ramon Valley Blvd, Suite 102 in Danville. Dr. Potozkin is a fellow member of the ASDS. He is accepting new patients. Please call (925) 838-4900 or visit Potozkin.com for more information. Advertorial
Group Helps People Cope with Death of Pets
When you lose your pet, you often feel like a part of you is lost. The death of your beloved animal companion is one of the most difficult losses you may ever feel. This loss is sometimes made more painful by society’s seeming lack of support for pet grief. Hospice of the East Bay and the Tony La Russa Animal Rescue Foundation is offering a support group where participants can share memories and feelings and talk to others who truly understand and care. Meetings will be held the second Tuesday of each month from 5:30-7:00PM at the Tony La Russa Animal Rescue Foundation, 2890 Mitchell Drive, Walnut Creek. For further information and/or to register, please call Bereavement Services at Hospice of the East Bay (925) 887-5681. Hospice of the East Bay Bereavement Services are provided free of charge to all community members in need. However, donations are greatly appreciated.
Health Tips for Pain-Free Gardening
By Melissa Ko, DC, Sycamore Valley Chiropractic
The weather’s warming up and many people are spending more time outside planting and pruning, mowing the lawn, and pulling weeds. Gardening can provide a great workout, but with all the bending, twisting, reaching, and pulling, it is easy to create strain and fatigue in the body. Gardening is a great outdoor activity, so it is important to stretch your muscles before reaching for your gardening tools. The back, upper legs, shoulders, and wrists are all major muscle groups affected when using your green thumb, so working in the garden can be a full-body activity. “A warm-up and cool-down period is as important in gardening as it is for any other physical activity,” said Dr. Scott Bauth of the American Chiropractic Association’s (ACA) Council on Occupational Health. “Performing simple stretches during these periods will help alleviate injuries, pain, and stiffness.” To make gardening as fun and enjoyable as possible, it is important to prepare your body for this type of physical activity. These stretches will help to alleviate muscle pain after a day spent in your garden.
Garden Fitness Stretches
• Before stretching for any activity, breathe in and out, slowly and rhythmically; do not bounce or jerk your body, and stretch as far and as comfortable as you can. Do not follow the “no pain, no gain” rule! Stretching should not be painful! • While sitting, prop your heel on a stool or step, keeping the knees straight. Lean forward until you feel a stretch in the back of the thigh, or the hamstring muscle. Hold this position for 15 seconds. Do this once more and repeat with the other leg. • Stand up, balance yourself, and grab the front of your ankle from behind. Pull your heel towards your buttocks, and hold the position for 15 seconds. Do this again and repeat with the other leg.
Danville Today News ~ June 2016 - Page 27
• While standing, weave your fingers together above your head with the palms up. Lean to one side for 10 seconds, then do the same to the other side. Repeat this stretch three times. • Do the “hug yourself” stretch. Wrap your arms around yourself and rotate to one side, stretching as far as you can comfortable go. Hold for 10 seconds and reverse. Repeat two or three times. Finally, be aware of your body technique, form, and posture while gardening. Kneel, don’t bend, and alternate your stance and movements frequently. Take frequent breaks so that your body is not in the same position for long periods of time.
When the work is done…
If you already feel muscle aches and pains and did not complete the warm-up and cool-down stretches, there are ways to alleviate the discomfort. Apply a cold pack on the area of pain if it happens within the first 48 hours, or apply a heat pack once the pain severity has reduced.
If the pain persists…
The pain, discomfort, or stiffness may be caused by spinal misalignments or a muscle injury and may worsen if not addressed properly. Have a Doctor of Chiropractic check your spine for healthy alignment and function, and make that appointment as soon as possible--getting care early in an injury has been shown to improve recovery time and outcome! Who do you know who is a green thumb? Consider chiropractic to keep enjoying the garden! Sycamore Valley Chiropractic is located at 565 Sycamore Valley Rd. West in Danville. Please visit www.sycamorevalleychiropractic.com or call 925-837-5595 for more information or to schedule an Advertorial appointment.
Page 28 - June 2016 ~ Danville Today News
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Danville Real Estate Market: Prices Still Rising!
We’re near the end of May so we have enough data to review this year’s market performance against the same time period last year (January 1-May 19) and be fairly confident that it has meaning. On average home prices continue to rise both in Alamo and Danville. A key driver to that growth appears to be relatively low inventory at the mid to lower price points for homes as well as great interest rates for buyers. Low inventory coupled with insatiable demand have been the price drivers in Danville and Alamo for five years. The Danville homes that have sold so far in 2016, have sold on average within 25 days. Let’s contrast that with the 101 active listings (homes not sold) that carry an average of 28 days on market. That’s not much difference. Home sales in Danville are down by 13% over last year. I suspect this decline is more from lower inventory than a reduction in demand, although we are probably beginning to see the signs that they are moving more into balance as days on market have increased by 9% from the previous year. Danville tends to lag the Alamo numbers by a year and a quick peek at the Alamo numbers could provide us with some insight about where Danville is heading. To me it looks like Alamo has hit steady state. Good news for Danville homeowners, so far this year average price has increase by 7% from $1,197,257 to $1,284,824. That’s very solid growth of $87,567 for the year and really nice for the folks who bought last year. Interesting to note is that list price is up proportionately which probably means that sellers are more accurately pricing their properties for market. Not listed on the chart is median price. It stands at $1,187,000 and is a really important number to aid our understanding of the Danville market. It means simply that half of the 185 Danville sold properties closed for more than this number and half sold for less. Half of all Danville sales were below median price and significantly more than half were below the average (mean) price. Dollars paid for square foot in Danville came in at an 8.7% increase, while the size of homes remained nearly the same. This means that the increase in price is fully a function
Award Winning Realtors
of higher demand and not size. While the Alamo Market has reached the point where it has fully recovered and is in a more steady state, the Danville market is still on the rise. A striking difference we can observe between the two communities is that high end homes $2 million plus have made a big comeback in Alamo, while that market has not recovered as fast in Danville. It will be interesting to see if Danville continues to grow at a faster rate. This could happen if proportionately more homes sell in the luxury market. The value of a Danville home has historically been less than an Alamo Home and today we see only a $27 dollar per square foot difference between the two markets. That’s not that much. Alamo Danville Single Family Home Sales Jan. 1-May 19 Sold DOM List Price Sold Price Sq. Foot Alamo 2015 52 23 $ 1,673,849 $ 1,702,890 3,472 Alamo 2016 65 35 $ 1,886,298 $ 1,879,861 3,798 % Change 25.0% 52.0% 13.0% 10.4% 9.3% Danville 2015 213 23 $ 1,190,570 $ 1,197,257 2,758 Danville 2016 185 25 $ 1,276,844 $ 1,284,824 2,755 % Change -13.0% 9% 7.0% 7.0% 0.0%
$ Sq. Foot $ 512 $ 513 0.0% $ 446 $ 485 8.7%
Something of consequence and worth noting is that actual selling price in Alamo is now lower than list price. Danville sales price continues to lead list price, not by much, only about $8,000. This means that Danville is still a market which favors sellers while in Alamo the field is more level. Bottom line, if you have owned your Danville home during the amazing run up of the last five years, you have done really well and if you are thinking about selling, now is a great time. It’s important to remember that there really is no “average” home and no two homes are exactly alike. Computer generated estimates of your home’s market value are probably wrong. If you would like multi-dimensional analysis of your home’s current market value, based on solid sales data and years of Alamo market experience, please give me a call 925-989-6086 or send me an email email@example.com. For more Alamo and Danville Real Estate articles, please visit our website at www.thecombsteam.com.
Canyon Lakes Single Level
Danville Single Story
Lovely ground level 2 bedroom condo with view of the lagoon. Priced to sell $575,000.
5 bedroom, single story on nearly 2 gorgeous acres. Two family rooms, exquisite master, large bonus room, walk-in wine cellar. Worth waiting for. Priced to sell $2,499,000.
Alamo Oaks Custom Home
Views! West Side Alamo
Diablo Building Lot
The epitome of 21st century architecture. 4 bedroom and office First floor level master & 2 family rooms. Price Available upon request.
West Side Alamo 4 bedroom spectacular views, great location. Worth waiting for.Priced to sell $1,279,000.
Build your dream home on a 1.64 acre lot in Diablo. Priced to sell $975,000.
Top 5% in Sales Production
Data presented in this column is based in whole or in part on data supplied by the Contra Costa and Alameda MLS service and other quoted sources. Joe Combs, Nancy Combs, The Combs Team, J. Rockcliff and the MLS service do not guarantee the accuracy of this information. DRE #0144125.
J. Rockcliff Realtors 15 Railroad Ave., Danville CA. 94526