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valleysentinel.com

May 2011

VOL 16, NO 5

SEVENTY-FIVE CENTS

SPOTLIGHT

Reducing carbon footprint reduces costs— Athenian shows how By Dana Guzzetti

Athenian School students prove that reducing your carbon footprint can produce better results and can reduce costs. Fulltime Spanish teacher John Harvey says, “In 2003, we were John Harvey discussing how we (the school) could be more financially self sufficient. We looked at the food service and saw that it was carbon emitting. We trained the faculty and students to separate garbage.” Food leftovers from the kitchen and food discarded by students represented a large part of the cost of disposal because the

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At the Science Alliance Science Faire that was held at San Ramon Valley High School on Saturday, April 23, fifth graders Maren Naegele, left, (“What types of liquids will affect plant growth?”) and Isabel Nieman, right, (“Which types of soil will affect bean plant growth?”) from Rancho Romero Elementary School sit with their experiments while judges and mentors make the rounds. Science Alliance is a student run club at Monte Vista High School that runs a science program for fifth graders during each school year. For more information on Science Alliance, visit their website at www.mvsciencealliance.org.

Alamo teen headed for Brazil By Dana Guzzetti

Teen summer camps and “ambassador” travel programs are great ways for youth to get a taste of other cultures, but they are not long enough to experience a cultural emersion and pick up basic language skills. Thirteen year-old Stone Valley Middle School student Bella Salyer is eager to expand her horizons. “I think it’s a great idea for everyone to really expand your views of the world and experience different cultures,” Bella said. “I was offered a chance to do a couple of ambassador things over the summer, but my parents thought I was too young.” The Salyer family looked for other options and created a

plan for study at Leonardo da Vinci School in Brazil from July through December. The added bonus is that she can explore her roots while she stays with her maternal aunt’s home on the island of Espírito Santo near Rio de Janeiro. Bella’s mother, Heloisa, was a Brazilian exchange student in San Diego when she met John Salyer. Bella has been thinking about medicine as a career. “I want to go to Harvard and study medicine. My aunt is a dermatologist,” Bella says. “I will get a chance to learn more about what it is like to be a doctor. I will go to school during the week and help at the clinic on the weekends.”

For two hours before and after school, Bella will work with a tutor to learn Portuguese. If she has any spare time, Bella says she wants to keep in shape with classes in capoeira.” I do karate now and capoeria is like that, but it is more like a staged fight, lots of flips and blocks.” “She is very organized and persistent,” Mr. Salyer said. “When she first asked to go, I thought she would forget if I put some hurdles up, but everything I asked for she delivered, including the curriculum and the syllabus.” About letting their 13-yearold take a long trip to a distant location, John Salyer said, “We feel excited and sad at the same time. She is our baby and we will miss her terribly.”

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• ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT • dining out • music • art • theater • fun events

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May 2011 Now – June 12 Land of Magic: Artists Explore Make Believe A dynamic exhibition profiling 13 artists in a wide variety of genres and media from painting and

printmaking to photography and video. Leaving conventional reality behind, they create alternate universes, taking us on a captivating visual adventure into untapped arenas utilizing magic realism, surrealism, and fantasy. Bedford Gallery, 1601 Civic Dr., Walnut Creek. Information: 925-1400

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May 13 & 14 Company C Ballet May 13: 8 pm, May 14: 2 pm and 8 pm. Quirky, irreverent, delicious and dark ballets by Company C Contemporary. The 13-member ensemble of classically trained dancers performs a diverse repertoire of moving, provocative, sensual and entertaining contemporary choreography. Tickets: $15$40. Lesher Center for the Arts, 1601 Civic Dr., Walnut Creek. Information: 295-1400. May 14 Holst's Planets & Dale Wolford 8pm. Livermore-Amador Symphony. Tickets: $10-$28. Bankhead Theater, 2400 First St., Livermore. Information: 373-6800.

May 14 – 28 Into The Woods Fri: 7:30pm, Sat: 3pm & 7:30pm, Sun: 3pm. An imaginative account of what happens when the lives of new and old fairy tale characters dramatically and humorously come together and set out for the forest on a quest to find “happily ever after.” Tickets: $16 Adults/$13 Kids under 12 or Adults 65+. Matinees $13 for everyone. Front Row Theater, 17011 Bollinger Canyon Rd., San Ramon. Information: 973-2787. May 15 Butch Thompson Trio 2pm. Classic early jazz offering blues, stomps, ragtime and pop songs. From Scott Joplin to Duke Ellington, dirty blues out of south side Chicago to the

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May 29 & 30 Art & Wind Festival: 10am-5pm daily. Over 200 booths featuring arts and crafts, paintings, sculpture, woodwork, toys, jewelry, clothing, stained glass, music, photography and entertainment. San Ramon Central Park, 12501 Alcosta Blvd. Free. Information: www. ArtandWind.com.

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May 20 & 21 Smuin Ballet 2010 – 2011 Season The spring program features the romantic ballet ‘Momentum” set to a Prokofiev piano concerto. Rounding out the bill is “To The Beatles,” a hip, entertaining celebration of the most influential group in the history of rock’n’roll. Average Ticket: $49. Lesher Center for the Arts, 1601 Civic Dr., Walnut Creek. Information & show times: 295-1400.

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roaring stride of 1920s Harlem. Tickets: $12-$51. Bankhead Theater, 2400 First St., Livermore. Information: 373-6800.

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valleysentinel.com

May 2011

Audible Mount Diablo By Staff Writer

Over the past three years, nonprofits have created Audible Mount Diablo, a series of electronic field guides you can download to an iPhone, iPod or other mp3 player. Modeled after the best museum audio guides, Audible Mount Diablo combines lively interviews and music with the rush of wind and the chirps, howls and growls of wildlife. Some segments are meant for the car ride to the trailhead; others for stops along the trail. Experts heighten visitors’ appreciation of the sights and sounds, tell tales of the mountain’s past and suggest what to look for around the next bend. In the iPod and iPhone versions of the tour,

photographs pop up to help identify plants and animals. The tours include “Introducing, Mount Diablo” –Sixty minutes of short takes on the mountain’s natural heritage and human history, including such topics as tarantulas, mountain lions, rattlesnakes, the Whitney Geological Survey, coal mining, early tourism and native peoples; “Grand Loop Tour”– Twelve stops on a strenuous 6.8-milelong circumambulation near the top. Topics include views, history, birds, flowers and conservation. Features Seth Adams of Save Mount Diablo; “Mary Bowerman Tour” –Nine stops on a gentle and spectacular 1-mile-long hike that focuses on geology and

history. Features former Mount Diablo Interpretive Association President Ken Lavin. By the end of 2011 Save Mount Diablo and the California State Parks Foundation plan to offer a fourth option, “Curry Point: Gateway to Diablo’s Southside.” Featuring Save Mount Diablo’s Seth Adams and Malcolm Sproul, this tour will explore the ecological riches of the mountain’s wild southside ridges and canyons. "These tours are great aids to exploring Mount Diablo,” says Save Mount Diablo’s Julie Seelen. “Hikers can take them on the trail, but anyone taking a Sunday drive to the summit can listen to ‘Introducing Mount Diablo’ and learn more about the flora and fauna of the mountain while enjoying the incredible views." The tours are all free at www.savemountdiablo.org. Just click on “Activities,” then “Hikes and Trails”. From these websites, you can sample the tours and learn how

Jammies for Japan By Lexie and Tyler Manzo

Who doesn’t love cozying up in a warm pair of jammies? Our names are Lexie and Tyler Manzo, and we sure do! We are in K and 2nd grade at Greenbrook Elementary. We love wearing cozy jammies and we would like to collect new jammies in all sizes for all of the families in Japan affected by the terrible earthquake and tsunami.

The Valley SenTinel to download them to your computer or mp3 device. You can also download a GPSenabled version of the “Grand Loop Tour” at www.everytrail. com/guide/mount-diablosgrand-loop. Says host Joan Hamilton, “The mission is simple: to help

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people see and hear and care more when they take a walk in nature. Audible Mount Diablo will delight those who already know and love the mountain while using the latest technology to help reach a new generation of nature lovers and conservationists.”

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SF International Airport Terminal 2 opens By Staff Writer

After a 10-year closure, San Francisco International Airport opened Terminal 2 in April. With the use of “sustainable construction” methods, the $383 million, 640,000 square foot terminal features a kids play area, hydration stations to refill water bottles, ambient lighting, work-oriented counter seating with outlets and free WiFi, a post security “recompose” area, local and organic food and reportedly a filtered air circulation system. The integral public art includes “Air Over Under,” a subtly colored, laminated glass façade on 120 panels designed by Norie Sato and Kendall Buster’s “Topograph,” which is two large mobilel i ke s c u l p t u re s m a d e o f stacked planes composed of powder-coated steel tubing and greenhouse shade cloth suspended on either side of the mezzanine. The recompose area is designed to be an area where people can relax and recover

from the security experience. Jane Echelman has created three voluptuous forms made of colored netting below three skylights. Colored lighting and a computer driven mechanized air-flow causes a relaxing, ever changing fluid movement of fabric and light for that space.

The children’s play area is embellished by Walter Kitundu’s “Untitled,” plywood interactive art depictions of various birds. Kids can have a fun, musical experience by using the instruments provided to make harmonious sounds.

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The Valley Sentinel

May 2011

valleysentinel.com Advertorial

Advertorial

Natural therapy for chronic pain and RSD/CRPS

Is there really an anti-cancer diet? Dr. Michael R Forrest

• Limit processed foods and red meats. The American Cancer Society contends that at least one-third of US cancer deaths are due to dietary factors. M a ny c a n c er de a t h s a re thought to be preventable by implementing simple dietary recommendations: Maintain lifelong healthy weight. • Balance calorie intake with physical activity. • Achieve and maintain a healthy weight if currently overweight or obese. Adopt an active lifestyle. • Engage in at least 30 minutes of moderate to vigorous physical activity, above usual activities, five or more days per week. But strive for the guidelines offered to youth. • Children and adolescents need at least 60 minutes per day of moderate to vigorous physical activity at least five days per week. Eat a healthy diet rich in plant-based foods. • Eat five or more servings of a variety of vegetables and fruits each day. • Consume reasonable portions of foods and drinks. • Choose whole grains over processed (refined) grains.

Limit your intake of alcoholic beverages. • Drink no more than one drink per day for women or two per day for men. What constitutes a healthy diet? The “raw food” diet is popular, and contains mostly fruits, vegetables, legumes and grains with nothing cooked over 116 degrees F. But this approach has limits, including inadequate protein and calories, plus risks of food-borne illness. While some cooked foods – particularly fried potatoes or barbecued meats – are linked to the production of carcinogens and other foods may lose vitamins B and C when cooked, cooking certain foods increases amounts of anti-cancer nutrients such as beta-carotene and lycopene. Thus, reduce meat consumption and eat a varied diet. “Whole” (unprocessed) foods are the best choices, whether prepared raw or cooked. What about supplements? Most people with normal intestinal absorption who eat adequate servings of fruit, vegetables, and grains do not need supplements. In fact, nutrients such as vitamins A, B6, D, iron, and selenium can be toxic when overused.

Blood tests can show nutrient deficiencies that may warrant diet changes or vitamin supplements. More fat equals higher cancer risk: High fat diets – saturated or unsaturated – can cause obesity, impair immune system function increase carcinogen intake, and influence hormonal activity. Each of these effects is strongly associated with increased risk for certain cancer types. Fortunately, a low fat diet is usually higher in fiber, which provides its own benefits. In addition, “organic” foods can potentially reduce toxic pesticides and hormones in the body. While organic foods cost more than traditionally produced foods, ask yourself, “Can I afford the alternative?” When deciding, realize that a diet low in meats but rich in plant-based foods may reduce toxins in the body while lowering the grocery bill. These dietary changes are easy steps to reduce cancer risk while reaping the benefits of heart-healthy foods and preventing - or at least delaying - the two most common illnesses in Americans today. Michael R Forrest, MD practices at Epic Care in Dublin, CA. -925-452-1852 www.epic-care.com

BAM a success at Alamo Elementary By Dana Guzzetti

Sharon Dodson and Anju Lashkari created a week-long nutrition and fitness learning experience for students at Alamo Elementary School. Both are health educators and school nurses who believe that fitness and eating right can be fun for kids. They put that idea to the test with a week of teaching events, which kicked off with a You Tube video filmed and edited by the Alamo Elementary Student Council and Principal Stan Hitomi. Janice Litvin lead the youngsters in “Zumbatomic” dance exercises during P.E. periods, and Katie Taylor, owner of Miglet’s Cupcake Shop, talked about gluten free baking while distributing gluten free cupcakes. The third through fifth graders were given shopping

“homework,” where they practiced making better food buying choices and learned about the new U.S.D.A. food py ra m i d . “ We ex p l a i n e d that exercise is the non-food item of the pyramid,” said Dodson. “They shared their new knowledge with the younger students.” The Body and Mind p r o g r a m , o r BA M , w a s sanctioned by the San Ramon Valley Unified School District and funded with a $500 grant from UnitedHealth HEROES program of UnitedHealth Group and Youth Service America. Dodson and Lashkari rightfully thought the BAM acronym would get kids excited. Dodson said it came from celebrity chef Emeril Lagasse’s famous expression “Bam!” when he throws

the spice into an epicurean creation. The finale was a lively program at the school assembly featuring student singers and entertainment produced with guidance by school Music Director Nancy Raaum. Dodson mentioned that the BAM program dovetails nicely with Michelle Obama’s current “Let’s Move” exercise and nutrition campaign for children. Student council and faculty members received BAM tee shirts and about 100 BAM iron-on transfers were sold. It was such a success that faculty from Diablo Vista and other schools have asked for copies of the prototype materials and a little handson help to organize similar events.

By Dr. Niele Maimone, DC

Align Healing Center was established in Danville in 1999, and since first opening my doors I have seen a progressive increase in chronic pain and Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy (RSD), now called Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS) in our community. RSD/CRPS is a chronic, painful and progressive neurological condition that affects the skin, muscles, joints and bones. The syndrome usually develops in an injured limb, such as a broken leg, or following surgery. However, many cases of RSD involve only a minor injury, such as a sprain. And in some cases, no precipitating event can be identified. RSD/CRPS is characterized by various degrees of burning pain, excessive sweating, swelling, and sensitivity to touch. Pain may begin in one area or limb and then spread to other limbs. In some cases, symptoms of RSD/CRPS diminish for a period of time and then reappear with a new injury. Causes and risk factors for RSD/CRPS An exact understanding of RSD/CRPS is not complete. It appears to involve a complex interaction among the sensory, motor and sympathetic nervous system as well as involvement of the immune system. Currently western medicine is not sure what causes RSD/CRPS. It is believed that in most cases the sympathetic nervous system plays an important role in sustaining the pain. Another theory is that CRPS is caused by a triggering of the immune response, which leads to the characteristic inflammatory symptoms of redness, warmth, and swelling in the affected area.

Treatment options for RSD patients Medical treatments for the management of RSD/ CRPS include analgesics, antidepressants, physical therapy, occupational therapy, nerve blocks and multiple other drug therapies. The Natural Approach for Chronic Pain and RSD/CRPS Holistic, non-invasive treatments for RSD/CRPS offer new possibilities patients may consider for pain and symptom management. As with traditional treatments, holistic treatments may need

to be combined for optimal results. Natural Medicine (vitamins, herbs, natural compounds, etc.) has proven to be effective and long-term in helping calm the sympathetic nervous system and reduce systemic inflammation. At Align Healing Center, we are currently seeing beneficial results in the treatment of chronic pain and RSD/CRPS. The combination of laser therapy combined with natural medicine is yielding hopeful results. L a s e r t h e ra py i s t h e application of low levels of laser light to areas of the body that have been injured or damaged. Contrasted with high-powered lasers used in health care that cut tissue, such as surgical or hairremoval lasers, therapy lasers produce beneficial chemical and biological interactions that can help relieve pain and repair injured/damaged tissue. Just as photosynthesis creates energy for plants, the absorption of the laser light by your cells causes increased production of cellular energy. In areas of injury or damage, this means there is more energy available to improve the rate and quality of healing. Studies on tissue cultures have revealed a wide range of beneficial physiological effects, including increased levels of endorphins, reduced levels of inflammatory compounds and an increased rate and quality of tissue healing. We often have patients notice improvement after the very first treatment session; whereas with chronic pain or RSD/CRPS, it is realistic that it may take a few treatments. The effect of laser therapy is cumulative, meaning that each successive treatment builds on previous ones. The results that we are experiencing with our patients are nothing short of remarkable. Class IV laser therapy has exceeded our expectations of the healing potential that it ignites in the body and it is our mission to share it with anyone who is seeking freedom from their pain. Dr. Niele Maimone, DC is the owner and founder of Align Healing Center in Danville, CA. She has been active in our natural health & wellness community since 1999. For more information or to set up a consult call 925.362.8283 or visit www.alignhealingcenter.com.


valleysentinel.com

May 2011

News Bits

By Dana Guzzetti

Pa y - a s - y o u - d r i v e c a r insurance

As this economy puts the squeeze on family budgets, lower cost “pay-as- you-drive” insurance is being offered by more car insurers. Commuters who only use a car to go to a BART station and back or take kids to school may find this a way to lower car insurance costs by paying only for the total number of miles driven in a certain time frame, as opposed to paying a rate based on average usage. Reportedly, Farmers’ Group in California tracks drivers by their smart phones. Low mileage drivers could save eight to 10 percent on car insurance and other companies may have followed suit since Farmers’ plan was state approved.

Town of Danville

The Danville Town Council signed off on two improvement projects that came in under budget in April: a granite pathway at Hap Magee Ranch Park ($20,368) and the town’s data room redesign project ($78,512.18).

Movement toward eliminating cursive writing The New York State English Language Arts curriculum only requires legible manuscript. In other words, kids can get through school by printing CARBON FOOTPRINT from page 1

high water content adds the most weight to the refuse, and disposal companies charge by weight. Also, produce purchased and shipped from greater distances add to fossil fuel consumption. “We started to produce 50 to 100 pounds of compost a day from food leftovers, or about four tons a year,” Harvey reported. “Planting an organic garden was the only logical thing to do and everybody at the school got involved. We had volunteers, board members, students, faculty and parents helping us. The first year we grew 1,400 pounds of lettuce and greens for the salad bar. From 2004 to 2005, we paid $16,000 in landfill haulage fees for the kitchen. Last year it came down to $6,000.” Harvey is not a scientist. His PhD is in Spanish, but he has been gardening since childhood and pitched in to help steward the effort. “I am just trying to support my students and keep the program running,” Harvey said. M e a n w h i l e, p h y s i c s teacher and Head of the

News Bits

their assignments. Abandoning instruction of cursive writing has been the topic of discussion on several local talk shows and one tech blogger suggests more education on the use of fonts. The crusade appears to be emanating from the website www.fonts4teachersblog.com.

Absolutely no smoking

California State Senator Mark DeSaulnier’s Senate Bill 575 went to the Industrial and Labor Relations Committee in April. It would close loop holes in the existing workplace “smoke free” law by removing smoking exemptions in certain areas of hotel/motel lobbies, meeting and banquet rooms, retail or wholesale tobacco shops, warehouses, and break rooms. It would also introduce smoke free rules to businesses with five or fewer employees and other specified locations. SB 575 is co-sponsored by the American Cancer Society, the American Lung Association and the American Heart Association.

News Bits

track and field meets. The event honors former councilman and mayor Michael Shimansky. He regularly appeared at the high school as a starter and he closely followed local track and field events before his death in 2009.

Keller Williams helps Blue Star Moms

Keller Williams agents are scouring Danville for donations to the Blue Star Moms gift packages for military personnel serving in Iraq and Afghanistan. Dehydrated drinks and cereals, foil food pouches, personal grooming products, puzzles, CDs, DVDs, other small comforts and cash for shipping costs are what the Blue Star Moms need. Donations will be assembled on May 12 at the Keller Williams Danville office at 760 Camino Ramon between 9am and noon. For more information or to donate, call Traci Butler at 925457-6526.

SR Regional Medical Center upgrade

San Ramon High School’s first Mike Shimansky Memorial Invitational track and field meet features only five events: the 300 meter hurdles; the 200, 1,600 and 3200 meter relays; and the pole vault, which usually only occur near the end of high school

S a n Ra m o n Re g i o n a l Medical Center has completed $ 10 . 7 m i l l i o n w o r t h o f improvements, including an 8,900 square foot addition with nine to 16 new beds and an upgraded emergency d e p a r t m e n t w i t h a n ew ambulance entrance and decontamination showers. SRRMC is affiliated with Tenet

Science Department Dave Otten had seen a biodiesel conversion project at the San Mateo County Fairgrounds. “About five years ago I wanted to get students thinking about the difference between fossil fuels and biodiesel. We built a 60-gallon processor and collected vegetable oil from restaurants to create fuel to supplement the diesel used in the buses.” The Athenian School operates a shuttle for about 40 boarding students that need to get around town for errands and events. There is an array of solar panels at the school which produce 60 percent of the school’s energy use, and that made an electric car a logical alternative energy power choice. The Alliance for Climate Education, which supports student initiated environmental projects, gave students a $5,000 grant to get started. One of the faculty members gave up a 1980’s Honda Civic for the cause. A complete analysis is needed to determine how green or sustainable any practice is. Otten said the true underlying cost of a gallon of gasoline could be $8 to $15 if

one considers environmental costs, petroleum subsidies, health cost ramifications and military events related to Middle Eastern oil sources. An electric car may also not be as clean as advertised if the source of the electricity is located far away. One third of the energy is lost in transmission, and electricity from a coal powered plant makes it a wash, according to Otten. Harvey said students are working on a web-based carpool system and that school hosted a Sustainable Schools Summit conference in April so students could share ideas and connections. T h e E s t a k h r i Fa m i l y Sports Field on campus is another example of the environmentally conscientious culture at Athenian. The school saves nearly 2 million gallons of water annually with the conversion to an all-weather field composed of recycled materials. The Athenian School in Danville is an award-winning member of the Green Schools Alliance and the contra Costa Green Business Program.

Mike Shimansky Memorial Invitational

The Valley Sentinel

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News Bits

Healthcare Corp. and located on Norris Canyon Road in San Ramon.

Danville looking for art

The Town of Danville is inviting submissions for The Elegant Line exhibit to be features at the Village Theatre Art Gallery, July 15 through Aug. 26. The theme of the show is to show the range of a line. It can show expressions from soft to faint to curvaceous and stoic, frame a subject, create depth, define space or add texture. This is a juried exhibition and will focus on a wide spectrum of artwork depicting strong use of line. Submissions are due by June 10. Three entries per artist and the entry fee is $25. Visit www.villagetheatreartgallery. com or call 925-314-3400 for more information.

S a n Ra m o n Fa r m e rs ' Market moves

New Location: Saturdays, 9am - 1pm, year-round, starting May 7, 2011, Bishop Ranch 2, Bollinger Canyon Rd/Sunset Drive across from Whole Foods Market and Peet's Coffee. New Artisan Food Market: Thursdays, 11am - 3pm, starting June 2 - October 27, 2011, Bishop Ranch 3, Camino Ramon/ Bishop Drive off Bollinger Canyon Rd. Learn more about the exciting changes to the farmers' market, discover your Bob Oxenburgh, director of finance and business operations added, “Environmental stewardship has been one of the Athenian’s basic pillars of what we believe is a complete education.

local growers and artisan food vendors, get up-to-minute information on special events, musicians at the market, sponsors and much more www. sanramonfarmersmarket.org.

Supervisor Mary Nejedly Piepho needs candidates

Contra Costa County Supervisor Mary Nejedly Piepho is looking for qualified candidates to serve on the county’s Fish and Wildlife Committee and Mental Health Committee. Must live in district III. Visit the county’s website for more information at http://contra.napanet.net/ maddybook. Applications should be submitted to the Clerk of the Board’s office located at 651 Pine Street, Martinez, CA 94553. For information call 925335-1900.

Weekly dog park closure announced

The Canine Corral at Hap Magee Ranch Park will be closed for maintenance every Tuesday beginning May 3, 2011. This closure will allow maintenance work to be completed at the site while minimizing the impacts on the user groups. Mowing, irrigation repairs, weed abatement, hardscape repairs and other repairs will be done and the grass will have a day to recover. Contact jjohnson@danville.ca.gov for more information.

Everything we do, in hiring faculty and in making financial decisions, takes that into consideration. When I can combine budget savings and being green, it is an easy decision.”

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• Education • libraries • schools • camps • events

page 6

Planning and paying for college By Dana Guzzetti

Now is when high school juniors and their families need to get in gear if college is in the plans. In the best of all worlds, parents have been contributing to a college fund and students have been keeping up their grades. This month a final decision on a career path or college major needs to be made.

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Some have to work to help pay school expenses. Six out of ten were enrolled in four-year schools and 32 percent of those students were working or looking for work. Students in two-year colleges who were working or seeking employment amounted to 54.4 percent. Research Research colleges that offer studies which compliment the student’s interests. Discuss options with high school counselors, family, friends and business associates. Consider the student’s grade point average and SAT scores. Think about what kind of a college community would make a comfortable match for the student. Make lists with the pros and cons. Some students will love being in a big city college, others may flourish in a smaller school. Some are comfortable being far from home, others like being close to home. California State university and college costs are less for California residents and travel is not so much of an issue. Scour the community and the internet for scholarships offered by non-profits, business or civic organizations, sororities and public service clubs. Consider the United States Armed Services, which offers college programs. Beware of scams offering to find financial aid on your behalf. The federal loan application is free. Some of them use official sounding names. Do not give out a credit card number, a savings account number or any money to apply for a scholarship. Visit www. ftc.gov/scholarshipscams for more information. There are few students who qualify for full scholarships, unless they happen to be a n o u t s t a n d i n g a t h l e t e.

However colleges usually have a scholarship fund to help promising students. Often there are on-campus jobs that help cover costs and there are ways to have your college loans forgiven through government service, such as the Peace Corps. Students may also be able to earn money by volunteering with AmeriCorps or the California Conservation Corps. Finally, students who have been in foster care are eligible for up to $5,000 in Chafee Grant funding. Those who are dependents of deceased or disabled U.S. military veterans, firefighters or law enforcement personnel may have all fees waived. Visit When you have done the homework, take some family trips to visit the campuses of as many potential schools as possible. Check to see when tours are available. If you cannot go at that time, visit anyway. If offices are open, try to schedule a visit to the financial aid office and make a connection with an advisor, or just stop by (check www. campustours.com). It is amazing how much one can learn by just being on a campus and randomly chatting with faculty, staff and students. Sometimes a potential student will immediately like or dislike a campus. The student should feel comfortable there. Decide Decide on four or five choices and get ready to file applications by fall or winter. Be sure to check application deadlines. They differ, but generally you will need to submit transcripts, a deposit check and an “intent to enroll” form by May 2 for fall of that year. In the meantime, start looking for scholarships, loans and do tax planning if

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valleysentinel.com appropriate. (Loans and some scholarship decisions will use the parent’s 2011 tax return in calculating what to offer for assistance.) The loan process changed in 2010. Now all federal college loans are obtained from the U.S. Department of Education’s Direct Loan Program through the school where the student applies. Pell Grants for the 2010-2011 school year were set at a maximum of $5,550 (does not have to be repaid), and the fixed rate for federally subsidized Stafford Loans was at 4.5 percent. With all levels of government cutting back, the availability of college funding will be fluid. It is a good idea to have several alternatives. Public and private college costs are rising, so information—even one year old information—may be incorrect today. Double check everything. The first thing to do is complete the free application for Federal Student Aid (FASA) to be considered for other state, federal and college financial aid. You can apply for financial aid every year, from your senior year of high school through your senior year of college. There is also some assistance for graduate school. The Cal Grant secondary deadline is September 2 for California community college students. The amount of funds is limited. Community colleges have easier admission requirements and many have guaranteed admission to a four-year state university or college for students with good grade point averages. Check the websites www. icanaffordcollege.com and www.KnowHow2Go.org for help with community college costs. The most important thing to keep in mind is that this experience does not have to be terribly stressful. In fact, if it is approached as a challenging adventure, it can be fun. Getting into the right college is serious and important, but there is life after the college application process. Avoid stress by starting now. Once school starts in the fall, the daily demands of classes, homework and activities may interfere with the process. The process also actually helps students become accustomed to the red tape they will undoubtedly encounter in life. Students get to know themselves by writing an application letter or statement. Soul searching is required. Take time with it and be authentic. College admissions professionals can usually spot a contrived story.


Kid’s Camps valleysentinel.com

May 2011

Register now for summer camp By Stafff Writer

For most people, camp was a place to learn something new and grow in a natural or different setting, away from parents and with a different mix of companions. Forcing a child to go to camp is a mistake, but encouraging or enticing a youngster with even a mild interest to try something safe and new helps them learn and become more independent. There are probably at least 50 good camps still admitting campers in the Bay Area. Day Camps Younger children can start to get the summer camp habit by taking swimming lessons. Kids of all ages can have fun at local arts, crafts, drama

and play sessions offered by the school system, East Bay Regional Parks or YMCA. Devil Mountain Summer Camp and Athenian Summer Camp, Dorris Eaton School, Seven Hills School, Heather Farm Camp, Roughing It day camp, Adventure Day Camp, Willows Theatre Conservatory summer camp, John Muir Mountain Day Camp, Chess Camp in Berkeley, horse camp, Scout Day Camps are some that are still available. Going away Search the Internet for camps that feature something your child would like to learn more about. Many have videos online or will send you a video. Visit the camp first if

you can. Ask for referrals and check online. Check with the American Camp Association for certifications or affiliations. Does the camp do background checks on personnel? Send self addressed, stamped postcards just in case your youngster wants to write. Older teens are often looking for a challenge. More extreme sport camps for surfing, scuba diving; mountain climbing, white-water rafting, and canoeing can be found in the telephone book or on the Internet. The whole family There are a number of family camps within driving distance. Kennolyn Camps on 300 acres in the mountains near Santa

The Valley SenTinel Cruz where activities include equestrian, riflery, archery, trapeze, self defense, fencing, ropes courses, swimming, crafts, pottery, photography, art, drama, basketball, volley ball, tennis, dance, guitar, beach trips, surfing, overnight outpost campouts and more. A few favorites are: High Sierra Camps, Coppercreek Camp near Lake Almanor and Mt. Lassen National Park, Camp Concord www.ci.concord.ca.us near Lake Tahoe. Taking the

page 7

whole family out into nature can be a genuinely bonding experience.

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Drowning Prevention Month By Dana Guzzetti

May is National Drowning Prevention Month, a time for everyone to brush up on water safety, life saving techniques and CPR. Drowning is the largest injury related cause of death for children under the age of five in California, according to California’s Department of Developmental Services. C h i l d re n m ay d row n anywhere there is water. Always keep them within arm’s reach when near a pool, spa, bathtub, toilet and even a bucket of water. Always drain the bathtub, empty the wading pool and dump out buckets immediately after use. Even children who can swim or are using a flotation devise must have constant supervision. E ve r y ye a r t h e re a re reports of valley children drowning because an adult ran to answer the door or went to the bathroom or answered a phone. The unexpected can occur at any time and a child can drown in seconds. The U. S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) is also looking into accidents that occur when a person falls near the edge of a pool cover, slips beneath it and becomes trapped. Nearly 400 children under the age of 15 die annually in pool and spa related drownings, and another 4,200 are treated for submersion injuries, according to the CPSC. Sw i m m i n g i s a s k i l l everyone needs to master for their own safety and that

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Spring Home & Garden

The Valley SenTinel

May 2011

May inspires a new outdoor look By Dana Guzzetti

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give away or donate or sell the rest. Next, think about the mood you want for the space, or spaces. and begin to visualize what will make it that way. A Mediterranean theme is easy in this area because of its Spanish history and Mediterranean-like climate. It is generally a low maintenance type of decor and perfect for outdoor entertaining. It can also be easily slanted toward a Mexican, Italian or Greek theme. Consider the location of the sun to determine where you need to create shade and where artificial and accent lighting may be needed. Remember

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Spring Home & Garden valleysentinel.com

May 2011

Furniture Often a fresh coat of paint and new cushions will transform last year’s patio set. If you decide to purchase new furniture, consider the weight, size, durability and versatility. Garden furniture should be comfortable, but not so large that there is no room to circulate in the entertainment area. The most comfortable chair may take up nine square feet in a seating arrangement. In limited spaces, it is better to find a smaller scale table and chair set and augment them with a couple of more comfortable pieces. Small, socalled “bistro” sets work well for a small patio or deck. Wrought iron is costly, very heavy, must be well maintained and should be covered in winter; however, it can be gorgeous and long-lasting in an elegant French garden or Mediterranean setting. Wicker and Rattan are made of popular eco-friendly materials and are generally less expensive. They are lighter, not as durable (should probably be brought indoors in winter) and can be found in a classic-tocontemporary range of styles.

Teak works well in almost any setting if the design is simple. For centuries, teak has been used for boat decks. It is very durable if it is well maintained, but like wrought iron, it can be hard to move around and it is not cheap to buy. Aluminum garden furniture is popular because cast aluminum can look like wrought iron, requires less care and is lighter. It holds up better than bargain aluminum, but it costs significantly more (still generally less than wrought iron). Inexpensive aluminum chairs have been known to collapse with age and the weight of a heavier person. Also, if not immediately removed, insect repellant and sun screen may discolor the metal surfaces. Plastic is inexpensive, but usually not very attractive. Make no mistake, plastic chairs are perfect for certain occasions or if the budget precludes anything else. If there is a shady area away from the entertainment center, it could beg to become a quiet refuge with a calming focal point such as a garden sculpture. The sound and appearance of a

water feature also adds an air of tranquility, but if placed under trees, you will not feel peaceful cleaning it out regularly. The location and style of a backyard swimming pool also dictates outdoor décor. It could call for a cabana or screened areas, and the pool may bring to mind a Polynesian theme (wicker and rattan are practically a must). The landscaping becomes another element of the setting. Try not to remove large, well established vegetation unless you plan to completely relandscape. Even if you do have a plan to do that, it can usually be accomplished incrementally. In the meantime, add color with annuals, new blooming potted plants that fit your theme and other changes that fit the over-arching plan. If you are going for Mediterranean, grape vines along a fence or dwarf citrus or fruit trees could make a nice addition. Bamboo fits with Polynesian, but be sure to research the type of bamboo and be aware that it can take over if not potted or controlled. It is popular to grow vegetables with flowers now,

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see if there is room in the budget and the garden for you to indulge yourself. Maybe you have imagined a pizza oven, a water fountain, a fire pit, a hammock, a canopied porch swing, solar lighting, or a sand box for children. May is always the right time for something fresh.

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Spring Home & Garden page 10

The Valley SenTinel

May 2011

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Healthy Parks, Healthy People By Beverly Lane, East Bay Regional Park District Board President

This year East Bay Regional Park District is taking the lead nationwide to promote a movement called “Healthy Parks, Healthy People.” We are emphasizing the fact that access to parklands and outdoor recreation play a critical role in improving individual physical and mental health.

Founded by Parks Victoria in Australia, “Healthy Parks, Healthy People” principles have been promoted by thirtyfive other nations. Its theme is that community health and healthy parklands are interdependent. Especially in these difficult economic t i m e s, p u b l i c p a r k l a n d s provide families with an easy way to enjoy free or low-cost outdoor recreation and exercise. Of course this includes regional, state and local parks.

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East Bay Regional Park District’s involvement with the movement is a great fit. The District and Parks Victoria have long had a sister agency partnership, exchanging ideas on how to better manage parklands and serve the public. T h e Pa r k D i s t r i c t maintains and operates 65 public parklands totaling 107,000 acres in Alameda and Contra Costa Counties. The District has been a role model for many years for peer agencies nationwide. “Health Parks, Healthy People “presents an opportunity for us to expand on the theme that parks are a major contributor to public health and well-being. To help get the message out, the District has engaged the services of Convergence Media, a video production g ro u p f o u n d e d by D o u g

McConnell. McConnell is well known as a television producer and former host of several outdoor-themed shows, including “Bay Area Backroads” and “Open Road.” With more than 30 years experience in the media, he has featured many District parks, trails and events in his shows and knows the District well. He also has an extensive video library that includes film of District parks and trails. Under McConnell’s direction, Convergence Media will produce seven public service segments in English and Spanish, which will begin airing in May. Among those participating in the public service video program will be KRON-TV anchorwoman Wendy Tokuda, who is an energetic volunteer in Redwood Regional Park, and fitness expert Lorrie Sullenberger. She is the wife of pilot Sully Sullenberger, renowned for safely crashlanding a stricken jetliner in the Hudson River in 2009

without serious injury to passengers. And it isn’t all just talk. In concert with the healthy parks theme, the Park District offers dozens of activities designed to encourage people to explore the great outdoors. I t s “ Tr a i l s C h a l l e n g e ” program, co-sponsored by Kaiser Permanente, attracts thousands of people annually t o wa l k , b i cyc l e o r r i d e designated trails, earning a t-shirt and commemorative pin. The District also is offering a series of “Healthy Hikes” in various regional parks, led by its recreation department staff. And the District is sponsoring the 2011 Kids Challenge, based on the California Children’s Outdoor Bill of Rights. For more information on Healthy Parks, Healthy People and all the outdoor recreational opportunities available in the regional parks, visit the Park District website at www.ebparks.org, or phone the toll-free number, 1-888-327-2757.

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Community News & Information

Publisher/Editor – Denise Rousset Chief Financial Officer – Jeff Gummere Writer, Auto – David & Judy Colman Graphic Designer – Laurie Prindle Assistant Editor – Jason Bellini 390 Diablo Road, Suite 145 Danville, CA 94526 925-820-6047 Website: valleysentinel.com


COMMUNITY CALENDAR

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For additional Community Events visit: www.ValleySentinel.com If your event is not listed... Please do so by clicking on CALENDAR and Post an Event

We hope to see you there! ANNOUNCEMENTS May 7 Artist Workshop, Glass Flameworking Demonstration 1-3pm. See flameworking in action. Join glass artist Demetra Theofanous as she makes a glass pumpkin using the ancient art of flameworking. Free, but registration is required. Call 925-3143400. Village Theatre Art Gallery, 233 Front Street, Danville. May 12 Danville Wine and Chocolate Stroll 6-9pm. Wine tasting, music and souvenir wine glass in downtown Danville. Stroll throughout downtown Danville and enjoy live music and entertainment throughout the evening. Also at the Livery and Rose Garden. Free trolley rides between locations. Tickets: $25 at the corner of Hartz & Prospect Avenues from 5:30-7:00pm the night of the event. Information: 339-8330. May 12 Remember the Ladies 7pm. A Centennial Celebration of California’s Women’s Suffrage, 1911-2011. Celebrate 100 years of women’s suffrage in the state of California with an engaging and spirited historical re-enactment. Danville Library, Mt. Diablo Room, 400 Front St., Danville. Information: 837-4889. May 13-15 Native American Art Show and Sale May 13: 2-6pm. May 14: 10-6pm. May 15: 10-4pm. Artist will be making and selling rugs, Novajo pottery, jewerly, baskets, ivory & bone sculptures, fry bread and more. Tickets: $5 general, $4 seniors & children free. Alamo Women’s Club, 1401 Danville Blvd, Alamo. Information: 820-1943. May 14 Wildlife Museum Day 10am-5pm. Children and adults will get to know the owls, reptiles, fox, hawks, eagles and other live animals that reside at Lindsay Wildlife Museum with feeding and training demonstrations. Free. Lindsay Wildlife Museum, 1931 First Avenue, Walnut Creek. Information: 935-1978. May 14 Kids Bike Rodeo 12-4pm. A family program to celebrate “Bike to the Library!” week. A team of bicycle safety experts come to teach children and youth bicycle safety by biking through a mock city. The Kids Bike Rodeo will conclude the event. Free. Pleasant Hill Library, 1750 Oak Park Blvd., Pleasant Hill. Information: 646-6434. May 15 Animals On Broadway 10:30am-4pm. The Animal Rescue Foundation invites you to a free festival with a morning fundraising walk. Also on hand, adoption groups, vendor booths, and go home smelling fresh with a doggie bath. Broadway Plaza, Walnut Creek. Information: 296-3116. May 16 Retire Your Way! 6:30pm. When you retire, will you volunteer? Work part time? Go back to school? Whatever you decide, you need to be financially prepared. Find your retirement reality at this free seminar. Ygnacio Valley, 2661 Oak Grove Rd., Walnut Creek. Information: 938-1481. May 20 Garden Photography Workshop 6-8:30pm. Participate in a hands-on photography workshop with Mr. Saxon Holt. Walk through the garden learning how to think like a camera and gleaning tips from the pro. Then put that advice into practice behind your own camera. $75: general admission. The Ruth Bancroft Garden, 1552 Bancroft Rd., Walnut Creek. May 21 Make a Run for Peace 8am. A 5.3 mile run will begin and end at the Bear Creek entrance to Briones Park. Drive to the starting point ($3 parking fee) or take BART to the Lafayette station. Buses will shuttle runners to and from the event between 7:30 and 8:10am. Only one steep uphill, otherwise rolling terrain. Shuttle buses will transport runners back to BART.

May 21, June 18, July 16 & August 20 Lafayette Gallery Artists’ Markets 11am-5pm. An inviting market place with artists displaying and demonstrating their art and chat with different artists about their art work. Original photography, jewelry, paintings, collage , sculpture, pottery, fiber arts and more. Free. Lafayette Gallery, 50 Lafayette Circle, Lafayette. Information: 284-2788. May 24 Why Meditation? 9-10:30am. Meditation has been long been known to promote improved health and well being, increased self-awareness and growth, and a deeper spiritual connection. In this class, we will learn to release tension, quiet the mind, heal the body, visualize success and connect with our spiritual nature. Town Meeting Hall, 201 Front St., Danville. Information: 314-3400 May 26 Doggie Night 5-8pm. Fun for you and your four-legged friend. Follow the map to Doggie Night businesses for free dog treats and canine couture. Meet pet sitters, photographers, trainers, veterinarians and more. Doggie Night will begin at Molly’s Pup-Purr-ee at 425 Hartz Ave., Danville. May 29 & 30 Art & Wind Festival 10am-5pm. Over 200 booths featuring arts and crafts, paintings, sculpture, woodwork, toys, jewelry, hand-painted clothing, stained glass, music, photography and entertainment. Free. Information: www.ArtandWind.com. June 4 Mary Fettig – Brazilian Footprints 5pm. A Legendary saxophonist and flutist and graduate of Ygnacio Valley High School. Jazz music full of Latin rhythms and Bossa Nova beats. Free. Registration is required. Oak View Room,Walnut Creek Library, 1644 N. Broadway, Walnut Creek. Information and tickets: 977-3340. June 4 & 5 Walnut Creek Art & Wine Festival Sat: 11am-7pm, Sun: 11am-6pm. In the spirit of Mardi Gras enjoy more than 200 artists, two stages of continuous music, an expanded children's area, art and handmade crafts, award winning wines and beers, and much more. Free. Heather Farm Park, 301 N. San Carlos Drive, Walnut Creek. June 18 & 19 Danville Fine Arts Faire 10am - 6pm. Hartz Avenue. Information: www.mlaproductions. com

SENIORS May 10 Keeping You Upright: Fall Prevention 9-10am. Learn how you can take control and stop yourself from falling. Highlights will include incidences of falls, some tips to prevent falls, and what to do if you fall. Town Meeting Hall, 201 Front St., Danville. Information: 314-3400. May 26 Senior Health Fitness Day 9am-1pm. Come learn ways to improve your health and meet the experts who can make your life healthier and happier, promoting physical fitness, nutrition and preventative care. Box lunch is $3. To register: 314-3490. To register and pay $3 for box lunch: 3143400. Oak Hill Park Community Center, 3005 Stone Valley Road, Danville.

BUSINESS Alamo Chamber of Commerce Business after hours mixer: May 25, 5:30-7pm. Alamo Womens's Club, 1401 Danville Blvd., Alamo. Danville Chamber of Commerce Business after hours mixer: May 12, 5:30pm. Elite MD, 360 Rose Ave., Danville. $5 members, $20 non-members. Business after-hours mixer: June 9, 5:30pm. Danville Hardware/ Abby Carpet, 101F Town & Country Dr., Danville. $5 - members, $20 non-members.

San Ramon Chamber of Commerce Networking Luncheon: May 10, 11:30am-1:30pm. Increase Profits, Overcome Pitfalls. $25 for chamber members and $35 for non-members. Crow Canyon Country Club, 711 Silver Lake Dr., San Ramon. Business after hours mixer: May 19, 5:30-7:30pm. Forest Homes Historic Park, 19953 San Ramon Valley Blvd., San Ramon. $5 members, $20 non-members.

CLUBS May 17 San Ramon Genealogical Society 10am-12pm. Speaker: Janice M. Sellers. Program: Newspapers Online. This program will be of interest to both beginner and the more advanced genealogist. LDS Church, 2949 Stone Valley Road, Alamo. Information: 299-0881. Mondays Danville Rotary Club Meets every Monday at noon at Faz Restaurant, 600 Hartz Ave., Danville. Tuesdays Danville Sycamore Valley Rotary Club Meetings held every Tuesday morning at 7am. Crow Canyon Country Club, 711 Silver Lake Dr., Danville. For more information, call Scott Sampson at 743-8449. Wednesdays San Ramon Valley Rotary Club 7:00pm. Crow Canyon Country Club, 711 Silver Lake Dr., Danville. For information call Valerie Munoz at 683-6310 or visit www.crow-canyon.com. Blue Star Moms Chapter 101 General Meetings 7–9pm. Meets the second Wednesday of every month at Hap Magee Ranch Park Swain House, 1025 La Gonda Way, Danville. For more information, contact Peggy Conklin at 866-7035 or visit www.bluestarmoms.org. Exchange Club of San Ramon Valley Noon. Meets for lunch at noon second Wednesdays monthly. Features guest speakers and business networking. Guests are welcome with luncheon reservations. Contact: Karen Stepper, president, 925-275-2412, or www.srvexchangeclub.org. Alamo Women’s Club Program/Lunch - 4th Wednesday at the clubhouse, 1401 Danville Blvd., Alamo. Club Membership is open to women of all ages who reside in the Contra Costa area. Contact Nancy at ndommes@ yahoo.com or call 925-831-0111. Diablo Singles Dance Club 7:30–10:30pm. Last Wednesday of every month. 111 N. Wiget Lane, Walnut Creek. Members $7, guests $9. All are welcome. Call 837-2851 for information. Thursdays: Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States (VFW), Post 75, San Ramon Valley Meets every second Thursday of the month at the Swain House at Hap Magee Ranch Park, located at 1025 La Gonda Way in Danville. Doors open at 7:00 pm, meeting begins at 7:30 pm. For more information, contact Post Commander Nathan Greene at 925-875-1747. Mail to: VFW Post 75 San Ramon Valley, P.O. Box 1092, Danville, CA 94526. Find out more about the VFW on the Internet at www.vfw.org. Mt. Diablo Business Women 5:45-8:30pm. Meets second Thursdays monthly. Networking and dinner, guest speakers. Lafayette Park Hotel, 3287 Mt. Diablo Blvd., Lafayette. $37 members, $47 guests. Advance reservations required. www.mtdiablobusinesswomen.org. Alamo-Danville Newcomers Club Meets the fourth Thursday of the month. Welcoming new or long-time residents interested in making new friends and getting involved in a variety of fun and worthwhile activities. Information: 775-3233 or www. alamodanvillenewcomers.com. Fridays: Montelindo Club 9am. General meeting and speakers meets the third Friday of the month, September through May. Refreshments at 9 am, meeting at 9:30, and speaker at 10:30. The meeting is free and welcomes guests and new members. Orinda Community Church, 10 Irwin Way, Orinda. Web Site: www.montelindogarden.com. Email: montelindogarden@aol.com.

Please email or fax your Calendar Events to the Sentinel by 5 p.m. Friday, May 15 for the June issue. Fax No. 925-820-6048, info@valleysentinel.com or go to valleysentinel.com to enter your event online. Inclusion in the calendar pages is at the sole discretion of Sentinel Newspapers, Inc.


page 14

The Valley SenTinel

May 2011

valleysentinel.com

Fourteen year old Danville student publishes book to raise funds By Staff Writer

Adya is a 14-year old freshman at Dougherty High School and loves to write. She moved to Danville three years ago from Singapore and loves California. Adya plays the alto sax and is

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part of her school lacrosse team. Ad ya t o o k p a r t i n NaNoWriMo while she was an eighth grader at Diablo Vista Middle School and wrote a story about aliens called “Zoss, A Different World”.

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“Zoss: A Different World” is a science-fiction combination of space exploration, mystery, alien contact, reincarnation and alternative energy. Adya has decided to dedicate all the proceeds from the sales of the book towards the funding of a school building for tribal Indian girls in West Bengal, India. The book is available on Amazon.com and is absolutely kid-friendly (no scary aliens or

tears), but if you would like to purchase an autographed copy from Adya herself (in which case all the money goes to charity as opposed to the royalty that comes from Amazon), please do not hesitate to contact her at adyaroy@hotmail.com. If you have relatives or friends that you are connected through Facebook or other social networking sites, please post this link, and try to make this 14-year old’s efforts globally successful.

If your child studies at an elementary school, it would be great if you could talk to their teacher for Adya to come in as a guest speaker, which she has already done for 5th graders at John Baldwin and Quail Run Elementary. Any help, financial or through word-of-mouth, would be greatly appreciated. Every dollar counts, and every girl’s smile makes a difference. Just a few dollars will give someone a lifelong education.

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In 2001, when Danville residents Joe and Mary McHale brought their animated six month old son Danny in for his medical check up, they voiced their only concern about Danny’s development – his difficulty sitting independently. Referred to a neurologist for evaluation, Joe and Mary received the diagnosis feared above all others: “Your son has a terminal disease. There is nothing we can do. He is not expected to live past his first birthday.” San Ramon residents Andris and Nancy Dindzans realized that their daughter, Ariana, exhibited muscular weakness and difficulty climbing stairs in her early development. When she was two years old, a neurologist examined Ariana and shared similar difficult news with her parents.

Both Ariana Dindzans and Danny McHale were diagnosed with Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA), a disease which weakens the nerves that control motor functions like crawling, walking and breathing. This condition, which affects one in 6,000 infants, is the number one genetic killer of children under two years of age. One in 40 Americans is a carrier of the recessive SMA gene. There is no cure for SMA, and until a few years ago, very little research was done to develop a treatment or cure.

Unwilling to accept these grim prognoses, they reached out to Families of SMA for help and organized the firstever Concert for a Cure in 2001. This musical event took place in a friend’s back yard and raised $7,500 for Families of SMA’s research program. Now a decade later, Concert for a Cure has so far raised $750,000. Concert for a Cure goes tropical! “Reaching For A Cure in Miracle-ville” Saturday, May 21st, 6–11pm Blackhawk Country Club 599 Blackhawk Club Drive, Danville For tickets and information go to www.concertforacure.org

San Ramon ribbon cuttings celebrate business news On Thursday April 28, members of the San Ramon Chamber of Commerce gathered to cut the ribbon and celebrate the opening of a new boutique in San Ramon. This addition to the businesses in the San Ramon Square Shopping center on San Ramon Valley Blvd. is called Antiques, Art and Gifts. Owner Sandra Artru is a vivacious people person and has a shop full of delightful original art, antiques and gifts for any age. Items range from toys to cocktail sets. Framed paintings and drawings, many of which were created by the owner, accent the comfy atmosphere. Sandra’s extensive collection of English tea things, dishes and furniture is fun to see, and would make inspired gifts. Ms. Artru’s love of teaching people the techniques of watercolor painting adds one more feature to this interesting shop. She looks forward to meeting everyone and hopes to provide a great go-to stop for years to come. Antiques, Art and Gifts is located at 2217 San Ramon Valley Blvd. in San Ramon. Her operating hours are from 12:30pm to 5:30pm Tuesdays through Saturdays. Sandra can be reached at 925-362-0720. On Monday, April 11, the San Ramon Valley Regional Medical Center unveiled its newly expanded ER. The new emergency department expansion of 8,900 square feet includes private patient rooms, a Negative-pressure isolation room, enlarged patient waiting rooms, a dedicated X-ray machine and disaster preparedness equipment. There is special equipment for kids and a pediatrician from Children’s Hospital of Oakland always in the hospital. They are now designated as a STEMI Receiving Center, meaning that they have the protocols to treat high-risk heart attacks. Attendees were shown the beautiful new unit and introduced to key hospital emergency personnel while enjoying light refreshments. The San Ramon Valley Regional Medical Center Emergency department is located at 6001 Norris Canyon Road, San Ramon.


valleysentinel.com

May 2011

Senior Health Fitness Day By Staff Writer

The Town of Danville will be promoting physical fitness, nutrition and preventative care at this year’s Senior Health Fitness Day on May 26 from 9am-1pm. The event will take place at the Oak Hill Community Center located at 3005 Stone Valley Road in Danville. The first 50 people will receive a free pedometer. The morning begins with a fitness walk, free breakfast and coffee. Enjoy fitness demonstrations, free massages, putting contests, free health screenings, door prizes, great exhibitors and exciting presentations throughout the day. Come learn ways to improve your health and meet the experts who can make your life healthier and happier. Senior Health Fitness Day Schedule of Events 8:30am: Registration Opens. (First 50 people get a free pedometer.) Free Breakfast Starts 9:00am: Fitness Walk B e g i n s ( p re - re g i s t ra t i o n required, call 925-314-3490.) Meet in front of Oak Hill Park Community Center. Walk is around Oak Hill Park. 9am – 1pm: Exhibitor Hall Opens. Exhibitors Include: Town of Danville, Danville Police Department Crime Prevention, Align Healing Center, Bright Star Healthcare, Canyon Lakes Golf Course, Caring Solutions Home Care, Danville Farmers’ Market, Danville Travel, DASHA, Fit Mind & Body, Forward Motion,

John Muir Senior Health Services, Kaiser Permanente Senior Advantage, Massage Therapy by Jessica Gregory, Skin Savvy and Successful Health & Nutrition Planning. Health Screenings Begin (pre-registration required for memory screening, call 925314-3490.) 9:15am: Veterans Memorial Building Remodel presentation by Michael Stella, Senior Civil Engineer, Town of Danville. Summer Gardening presentation by Matt Akabane, owner Tassajara Nursery. 10:00am: Door Prize Giveaways 10:15am: Exercise to Get Your Aches Out presentation by Brandi Geiger, MS Exercise Physiology, owner Fit Mind & Body. Cooking Demonstration and Easy Nutrition presentation by Shannon Williams, CNC, owner Successful Health & Nutrition Planning. Fitness Demonstration-Low Impact Aerobics with Sylvia Rodriguez. 10 : 4 0 a m : F i t n e s s Demonstration-Tai Chi with Sulina Wong. 11:00am: Door Prize Giveaways. 11 : 0 5 a m : F i t n e s s Demonstration-Zumba with Betsey Syms. 11:15am: Skin Care – Love the Skin You’re in at any Age presentation by Jennifer Cross, licensed esthetician, owner Skin Savvy. 12 Noon: Lunch Served (preregistration required, call 925-3143400 to reserve $3 box lunch).

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Auto

The valley Sentinel

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page 15

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2011 Chevrolet Camaro 2LT Coupe By David & Judy Colman

In days gone by, any Camaro that posted over 300 horsepower was considered to be a Grade A muscle car, a real pavement ripper, like the original ’67 Z28. And, of course, any Camaro surpassing 300hp relied on the small block Chevy V8 for propulsion. And in keeping with that grand tradition, the current Camaro LT makes 312hp and 270 lb.-ft. of torque with Chevy’s latest take on the small block engine. In fact the block in the LT is so small that it displaces only 3.6 liters and relies on six rather than eight cylinders. To be sure, you can still upgrade to a 6.2 liter V8 in the SS model, but you’ll forego a couple of important V6 advantages in doing so. The most obvious benefit of choosing the V6 is its excellent fuel consumption. Expect a low of 18 MPG around town, but a steady 29 MPG on the freeway. The 426hp SS will have you ponying up 4 bucks per gallon much more often with its 16/25 rating. Even more to the point is the weight difference between the two models. The LT tips in at 3,719 pounds while the SS weighs 3,902 lb. Since most of that 200 pound difference sits over the front wheels, the LT feels livelier in response to steering input than the SS. The athletic prowess of the

LT really comes alive when you equip it with the optional RS Package. Pay a modest $1,500 extra and you’ll get a set of the handsomest alloys on any car today: flangeless 5-spoke painted aluminum rims that measure 8” x 20” front and 9” x 20” rear. Chevy slaps a set of sticky Pirelli P Zero gumballs (245/45R20 F., 275/40R20 R.) on these rims that afford leach-like traction. The RS package also includes such cosmetic upgrades as body color roof channel moldings and a special RS rear spoiler. Halo-ringed HID headlights and model specific taillights complete the makeover. A couple of standard features are worth noting because they are included in the base price of this vehicle. First, Ultrasonic Rear Park Assist is part of the basic package here. Because side and rear vision are limited due to the Camaro’s chopped roof line, it’s nice to have a helping sensor to judge distance when reversing out of a parking slot. Similarly surprising as standard fitment is the nine speaker Boston Acoustics entertainment system, which offers XM Satellite Radio (free for 3 months) and 6 months of free OnStar service. If you lose your Camaro in a parking lot, call 888-4-OnStar and your lights will flash and your horn will blow. They can also

unlock your car for you, find you a restaurant, or offer you turn-by-turn directions. The stellar infotainment unit also houses a CD player with AUX input jack and a USB port in the center console. S t a b i l i t ra k , a u s e f u l handling assist program i n t e g ra t e d w i t h t ra c t i o n control, is standard equipment on this LT. Unlike virtually any other car on the market, if you select the optional 6-speed automatic gearchange your LT will weigh less than a 6-speed manual gearbox version (3,719 lb. vs. 3,722lb.) But you’ll have to ante up an extra $1,185 for the sweet Hydra-Matic 6L80 tranny, which offers quick manual up and down changes via steering wheel mounted paddles. Chose the LT and you’ll be sure to miss the war whoop and burble of the SS’s 6.2 liter V8. But the ripping sheet cry of the V6 has a charm of its own that’s reinforced every time you jet by a pump island occupied by the thirstier SS. Engine: 3.6 liter direct injected V6 Horsepower: 312hp Torque: 273 lb.-ft. Fuel Consumption: 18 city MPG/29 highway MPG Price as tested: $29,910

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The Valley Sentinel_May 2011  

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