Recent News

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Make a match, not coats

The Peninsula Humane Society's 3-year-old chinchilla, Streisand, needs a forever home, ideally without small children. Streisand is confident, curious, and active. She loves to run, jump, chew, take treats from your hand, explore her surroundings and take dust baths.

Saturday, 12:43 AM | No comments yet

Friday, August 29, 2014

Bridging the tech gap

This summer, 425 kids from under-served communities, such as Belle Haven and East Palo Alto, were on campus at seven private schools on the Peninsula, including Sacred Heart Prep, Woodside Priory and Menlo School.

Friday, 6:58 PM | No comments yet
Atherton police release sketch of 'distraction' burglary suspect

Atherton police have released a sketch of a man who posed as a plumber, walked uninvited into a home on Mesa Court, and distracted an elderly resident while an accomplice stole items valued at more than $200,000.

Friday, 6:09 PM | 4 comments
Timely and tender

The current offering in TheatreWorks' new season is the Pulitzer Prize-winning drama by Quiara Alegria Hudes, who previously won a Tony for the book of the musical, "In the Heights." In this newest work, Hudes follows a cluster of recovering crack cocaine addicts who only meet virtually, as well as a pair of cousins dealing with family death and denial.

Friday, 4:27 PM | No comments yet
'Plumbers' rob Atherton home while resident distracted

Atherton police say a home on Mesa Court was burglarized on Thursday, Aug. 28, after a man who said he was a plumber investigating a nearby sewage problem talked his way into the house and distracted the owner while another person took valuables.

Friday, 10:16 AM | 1 comment
Abigail's story: 'I saw a little fear, but also courage and determination'

It was a warm September evening. There was a light breeze, and the frogs, birds and crickets were all pleasantly buzzing about, chittering and chattering among themselves. All seemed well, but some surprising news was coming, sneaking up on me like a tiger catching its prey, just about to pounce.

Friday, 8:38 AM | No comments yet

Thursday, August 28, 2014

About 20 residents still displaced following fire

About 20 people are still displaced following a Sunday night structure fire that gutted several apartment units in Redwood City, according to the American Red Cross.

Thursday, 9:04 PM | No comments yet
Feature story: Portola Valley residents welcome native plants and animals

Purple needlegrass is something special in the semi-arid world of the California native plant community. It grows in clumps, and fields of it, each clump a shower of fine blades out-flung from the center, present to the observer an ethereal loveliness.

Thursday, 8:53 PM | No comments yet
Menlo Park council votes for yield signs on Wallea Drive

Despite the strong recommendations of transportation staff and the majority of the Transportation Commission to install stop signs, the Menlo Park City Council voted 3-2 to install yield signs on Wallea Drive instead.

Thursday, 10:54 AM | 4 comments
Woodside residents can get town cash to build 'defensible spaces'

If a wildfire gets going in Woodside, there may be residents who, like the grasshopper in Aesop's fable, learn the hard way, in this case about the importance of preparing fire-resistant areas around homes and other buildings.

Thursday, 10:29 AM | No comments yet
Friday: Menlo Park vice mayor holds 'office hours'

Menlo Park's vice mayor, Catherine Carlton, will hold "office hours" at the Dutch Goose on Friday, Aug. 29.

Thursday, 10:26 AM | No comments yet
New gas lines ahead for Portola Valley Ranch

A project to replace 1,600 feet of low-pressure PVC gas main and 11 residential service lines will get underway in late October in a Portola Valley subdivision.

Thursday, 10:21 AM | No comments yet
3-D "virtual reality" coming to Woodside classrooms

Middle school science students at Woodside Elementary School will soon have the ability to look inside an erupting volcano or dissect a human heart, via 3-D virtual reality software.

Thursday, 7:58 AM | No comments yet

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Menlo Park tightens water belt

New water restrictions will take effect on Thursday, Aug. 28, for all customers of the Menlo Park Municipal Water District.

Wednesday, 11:31 AM | 10 comments
Police calls: Man in truck plunges over embankment on Woodside Road

Crime and accident reports from Woodside, Portola Valley, West Menlo Park and Menlo Park.

Wednesday, 8:27 AM | No comments yet
Thursday: Open space district study session on spending bond money

How will the Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District spend money from a $300 million bond measure approved by voters in June?

Wednesday, 8:26 AM | No comments yet
Mandarin school backers seek district sponsorship

Backers of the proposed Menlo Mandarin Immersion Charter School say they will officially ask the Menlo Park City School District to sponsor their school at the board's Sept. 9 meeting.

Wednesday, 7:22 AM | 9 comments

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Tonight: Atherton takes look at housing plan

An update of Atherton's housing element, a state-mandated plan for providing housing to people of all income levels, is on the agenda of the Atherton Planning Commission on Wednesday, Aug. 27. The meeting starts at 6 p.m. in the council chambers at 94 Ashfield Road.

Tuesday, 4:42 PM | No comments yet
Menlo Park honors history association

Mayor Ray Mueller and the City Council presented the Menlo Park Historical Association on Aug. 19 with a proclamation recognizing its accomplishments.

Tuesday, 4:02 PM | No comments yet
Woodside: 75 drivers cited for speeding in one day

Seventy-five speeding tickets, 15 tickets for "distracted driving" and eight for seat belt violations were issued to drivers at various locations in Woodside on Aug. 20, according to the San Mateo County Police Chiefs and Sheriff Association.

Tuesday, 11:41 AM | 26 comments
Tonight: Drought, Wallea Drive stop sign before Menlo Park council

The agenda for tonight's Menlo Park City Council meeting may sound a little familiar -- drought control and a neighborhood stop sign are scheduled for discussion.

Tuesday, 8:44 AM | 3 comments
Menlo Park: U.S. 101 reopened after early morning fire

All lanes have reopened after a car fire blocked two lanes on southbound U.S. Highway 101 in Menlo Park this morning.

Tuesday, 8:24 AM | No comments yet
Menlo Park: City newsletter criticized for bias against Measure M

Menlo Focus, the city's quarterly newsletter, generally garners only as much attention as it takes to decide whether to read it first before recycling it. But that changed when the latest issue came out with an article on Measure M, the initiative on the November ballot that would change Menlo Park's specific plan.

Tuesday, 8:13 AM | 49 comments

Monday, August 25, 2014

Smartphone 'kill switch' bill signed into law

A bill signed into law by Gov. Jerry Brown on Monday (Aug. 25) should make smartphones a lot less vulnerable to prospective thieves in the Bay Area and beyond.

Monday, 6:21 PM | No comments yet
Menlo Park: Roger Reynolds site may sprout townhomes

When the Roger Reynolds Nursery & Carriage Stop abruptly closed in 2013 after 97 years in business, patrons lamented its loss and wondered what would become of the site. It looks like the answer is housing.

Monday, 11:10 AM | 28 comments
East Palo Alto woman gets 15 years to life for high-speed-chase murder

An East Palo Alto woman has received 15 years to life in prison after a 2011 high-speed chase that led to the death of her friend, according to the San Mateo County District Attorney's Office.

Monday, 10:52 AM | 1 comment

Sunday, August 24, 2014

More than 500 riders turn out for Tour de Menlo

More than 500 bicycle riders from all over the Bay Area participated the 10th annual Tour de Menlo bike ride on Saturday, Aug. 23, organizers said.

Sunday, 10:42 AM | 3 comments
Caltrain 'cleared for maximum authorized operating speeds'

Caltrain has completed its inspection of all bridges, signals and track structures, and no defects have been found, spokesperson Jayme Ackemann said at 10:40 a.m. today, following the 6.1-magnitude earthquake that struck southern Napa County this morning.

Sunday, 9:27 AM | No comments yet
6.1 earthquake rattles Bay Area

A 6.1 earthquake that centered near South Napa shook Bay Area residents in their beds early Sunday morning. U.S. Geological Survey officials said the earthquake is the largest to hit the Bay Area since the Loma Prieta Earthquake almost 25 years ago.

Sunday, 9:10 AM | 1 comment

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Reports: Multiple mountain lion sightings in Portola Valley

The San Mateo County Sheriff's Office said it has received reports of multiple mountain lion sightings in Portola Valley, including a report of seeing three mountain lions in the vicinity of Westridge Drive and Cervantes Road in Portola Valley at around 11:30 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 21.

Saturday, 8:59 AM | 3 comments

Friday, August 22, 2014

Drought: Cal Water lists restrictions on water use

The California Water Service Company has a list of restrictions on water use during the drought, but doesn't have a final plan for how those restrictions will be enforced.

Friday, 8:34 PM | 9 comments
Woodside down to one farmers' market

The Sunday afternoon farmers market at the elementary school in Woodside is now the town's sole farmers' market. In June, market manager Maggie Foard ended the Wednesday afternoon market for the Skyline community at Four Corners, the intersection of Skyline Boulevard and Highway 84.

Friday, 2:17 PM | No comments yet
Neighbors protest water waste at Corte Madera School

Portola Valley residents who live near Corte Madera School have become increasingly upset this summer as water continues to run down nearby streets from the school grounds, but school officials say they are doing their best to solve the problem.

Friday, 1:54 PM | 12 comments
County clerk sentenced for workers' comp fraud

A hidden video was the undoing of a San Mateo County medical-records file clerk who had been drawing workers' compensation benefits after convincing doctors she had suffered a work-related back injury.

Friday, 11:44 AM | No comments yet

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Woodside School safety gets boost with upgraded crosswalks, path

The safety of students getting to and from Woodside Elementary School has taken a big step forward.

Thursday, 5:35 PM | 3 comments
Bills to curb antibiotic use head to governor's desk

The California Legislature recently sent to the governor two bills sponsored by Sen. Jerry Hill, D-San Mateo, that will prohibit the use of antibiotics as growth enhancers in farm animals and promote more responsible use of antibiotics in humans.

Thursday, 5:30 PM | No comments yet
Man suspected of burglarizing Sharon Heights home arrested

After a brief chase, deputies with San Mateo County Sheriff's Office captured and arrested a 34-year-old Belmont man Wednesday in connection with a number of burglaries, including in Menlo Park and Atherton.

Thursday, 12:05 PM | 1 comment
Menlo Park council approves Sobrato office complex

While the Menlo Park City Council didn't take action on every item on the agenda for its Aug. 19 meeting, there were still plenty of actions taken, including a unanimous approval of a new office complex in the M-2 industrial zone.

Thursday, 9:51 AM | No comments yet
Atherton: New bright green bike lanes on Middlefield near Marsh

Bright green paint and new pavement markings reminding motorists to share the road with cyclists can now be seen on both sides of Middlefield Road near Marsh Road in Atherton. It's part of a test designed to see if the changes will improve safety.

Thursday, 9:23 AM | 8 comments
It's back to class for local students

Students in the Almanac area go back to school either this week or next.

Thursday, 8:01 AM | 2 comments
Editorial: Bills would help curb growing crisis over antibiotics

Good news hails from Sacramento in the form of two bills successfully sponsored by Sen. Jerry Hill. Both are important first steps in reining in the overuse of antibiotics in an effort to control the growing health crisis that results from that excess.

Thursday, 7:17 AM | 2 comments

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Back to School: Menlo Park district makes plans for new campus

As children in the Menlo Park City School District headed back to classes on Aug. 20, the district is moving ahead with the planning for a new campus for Laurel School at the old O'Conner School site.

Wednesday, 3:52 PM | 1 comment
Menlo Park: Monte Rosa stop sign approval temporarily stopped

At Vice Mayor Catherine Carlton's request, the Menlo Park council last night tabled the question of whether to install stop signs in all directions at the intersection of Monte Rosa Drive and Eastridge Avenue.

Wednesday, 11:34 AM | 27 comments
Woodside: Overturned truck closes King's Mountain Road

Drivers intent on using King's Mountain Road between Skyline Boulevard and Woodside Road should find an alternate route, according to a bulletin issued at 10:54 a.m. today by the San Mateo County Office of Emergency Services.

Wednesday, 11:33 AM | No comments yet
Avenidas names new president and CEO

Amy Andonian, a nonprofit executive with experience in services to seniors and caregivers, will become the new president and CEO of Avenidas, the senior services organization based in downtown Palo Alto.

Wednesday, 10:39 AM | No comments yet
Four charged with perjury in 'Operation Sunny Day' cases

Four people who testified in cases relating to the San Mateo County District Attorney Office's "Operation Sunny Day" case, under which 16 alleged members of three East Palo Alto gangs were arrested for a string of violent crimes, were arraigned this week on perjury charges, according to the district attorney's office.

Wednesday, 10:38 AM | No comments yet
Police calls: Charm bracelet and gold bangles taken in $45,000 burglary

Crime reports from Atherton, Woodside, West Menlo Park, Ladera and Menlo Park.

Wednesday, 9:00 AM | No comments yet
'Grandmother' gives 'grandson' scammer a piece of her mind

A would-be confidence man tried the grandson-impersonation scheme on Menlo Park travel consultant Carolyn Bakar with an early morning telephone call on Aug. 14, but got nowhere. He did get an earful, though.

Wednesday, 8:58 AM | 13 comments

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Pet of the week

Make it an "Orange Friday" this week -- adopt Vincent, a 2-year-old, male looker with a soft coat and golden eyes, from the Peninsula Humane Society's Center for Compassion in Burlingame.

Tuesday, 6:45 PM | No comments yet
Three of five candidates want to change healthcare district

Five candidates are running for three open seats on the governing board of the Sequoia Healthcare District in the Nov. 4 election, including three who advocate allowing voters to decide whether the district should exist.

Tuesday, 12:53 PM | 13 comments
Tonight: Drought, Monte Rosa stop signs on Menlo Park council agenda

A presentation on the mayor's trip to China, followed by a study session on drought control measures, kicks off tonight's Menlo Park City Council meeting.

Tuesday, 10:04 AM | 1 comment

Monday, August 18, 2014

No charges against deputy who shot woman armed with knife

San Mateo County District Attorney Steve Wagstaffe said Monday he would not file charges against a sheriff's deputy who shot and killed an 18-year-old woman wielding a kitchen knife near Half Moon Bay in June.

Monday, 11:00 PM | 35 comments
Menlo Park: Tom Wing & Sons closing at end of September

After seven years in Menlo Park and more than 40 years in business, Tom Wing & Sons is closing its Menlo Park store and the family is retiring, says George Tom, president of the company that specializes in providing fine quality jade and other gemstones.

Monday, 5:58 PM | 2 comments
Contractor pleads no contest to theft, sentenced to jail

A Palo Alto contractor who had been accused of defrauding an Atherton homeowner pleaded no contest to one misdemeanor charge of grand theft and was sentenced to 60 days in county jail under a plea agreement accepted by San Mateo County Superior Court Judge Mark Forcum on Friday, Aug. 15.

Monday, 5:13 PM | 5 comments
Burglars rob cash register at Fosters Freeze in Menlo Park

Burglars on Saturday broke into Fosters Freeze, a Menlo Park landmark at 580 Oak Grove Ave., and stole $115 in coins from the cash register.

Monday, 11:53 AM | 1 comment
Tonight: Menlo Park Planning Commission studies Haven Avenue housing

Part of tonight's Menlo Park Planning Commission meeting will be dedicated to a study session on a proposed Haven Avenue apartment complex.

Monday, 11:40 AM | 2 comments
Menlo Park: Initiative ballot arguments released

The arguments that have been filling the air at city meetings for months are now officially on the Nov. 4 ballot. Those for and against "Measure M," an initiative to change Menlo Park's downtown/El Camino Real specific plan, have submitted the primary arguments in support of their positions.

Monday, 11:38 AM | 83 comments
East Palo Alto shooting leaves one dead, four injured

An unidentified shooter opened fire on a vehicle driving in East Palo Alto Sunday night, leaving one person dead and four injured, according to East Palo Alto police.

Monday, 9:16 AM | No comments yet
Menlo Park: Man pleads not guilty to assaulting officer with truck

A 65-year-old Menlo Park man pleaded not guilty Aug. 7 to assaulting a code enforcement officer with a deadly weapon -- in this case, his 1966 Chevy.

Monday, 8:06 AM | No comments yet
Menlo Park seeks riders for van service

Calling more riders -- the city of Menlo Park's free van service is looking for more patrons.

Monday, 8:04 AM | 1 comment
Obituary: Jack Byrne, grocer, carpenter

John (Jack) Hayden Byrne, a resident of Portola Valley and once the co-owner of a family grocery store in San Francisco, died peacefully on Aug. 1. He was 92.

Monday, 7:54 AM | No comments yet
32-year-old accident victim had lived in Atherton for 22 years

Shahriar Rahimzadeh, the 32-year-old Atherton resident who died after being struck by a car on El Camino Real on July 23, had lived in Atherton for most of his life, and attend Menlo Park school and Menlo-Atherton High School.

Monday, 7:53 AM | No comments yet
East Palo Alto youth program aims to build qualities for success

Curiosity, persistence, resilience. After decades of teaching and mentoring at-risk youth, Anna Waring knows that kids armed with those qualities have a better shot at succeeding against the odds.

Monday, 7:49 AM | No comments yet

On Tour at Selective Schools: Chapman, La Verne, Redlands, Whittier
By John Raftrey and Lori McCormick | 0 comments | 1,689 views

The dress code
By Jessica T | 15 comments | 1,524 views

. . . People will never forget how you made them feel.
By Chandrama Anderson | 0 comments | 889 views

Anglo Menlo Park
By Paul Bendix | 0 comments | 585 views

Council election, and then some.
By Stuart Soffer | 1 comment | 365 views