Community - May 11, 2011

Around Town: PVs hold 'Western Bonanza' May 21

by Jane Knoerle

The Peninsula Volunteers, known for their spectacular parties, are heading west for "Horsin' Around," a benefit to be held Saturday, May 21, at the National Center for Equine Facilitated Therapy, 880 Runnymede Road in Woodside.

Along with dancing, drinking, and dining, there will be casino events and a special appearance by Krandel Lee Newton of Dallas, who is known as the original "Butt Sketcher." Since 1987, the artist has specialized in drawing folks from a rear view. There are now several "Butt Sketchers" in Dallas and, altogether, they have created 400,000 sketches, appearing at conventions, trade shows, even weddings, according to the "Butt Sketchers" website. The black and white sketches are created in about three minutes, says the site.

Mr. Newton is being flown in from Texas by Joe and Nancy Greenbach of Atherton. Ms. Greenbach, a past president of the PVs, hails from Dallas.

"Horsin Around" starts at 4 p.m. with cocktails and appetizers, and then proceeds to music by the Dick Green Band, line dancing, gaming and performances by the San Mateo County Horsemen's Association Senior Color Guard, the Pacific Coast Vaulting Club, and trick roper Chryle Bacon.

After dinner, Frank Bizzarro will led the Fund-A-Need charity auction.

Co-chairs Kimber Sturm and Terri Carville urge guests to dress casually in jeans, sundresses, or as a famous western character. Tickets are $175 and may be purchased by calling Cathy Duhring of Peninsula Volunteers at 326-0665, ext. 238.

Peninsula Volunteers is a pioneer in senior services and the first volunteer organization in the United States to receive a HUD grant to build low-income senior housing.

Summer concert in Portola Valley

The first Portola Valley summer concert of the season will be held at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, May 12, with music by the six-piece band, A Thousand Lovers.

Residents should arrive early to find a picnic spot on the grass adjacent to the library at the Town Center, 765 Portola Road in Portola Valley.

The free concert is sponsored by the Portola Valley Cultural Arts Committee and the town of Portola Valley.

Relay for Life in Menlo Park

The Menlo Park Relay for Life for the American Cancer Society kicks off at 10 a.m. Saturday, May 14, at Burgess Park in Menlo Park. The relay begins with the official Survivors Lap, then the rest of the participants join in.

A luminaria ceremony, remembering those lost to cancer, will be held at 8 p.m. that evening at Burgess Park. The luminaria candles are $10 each.

Information about making a luminaria donation or walking in the Survivors Lap is available by calling 477-8879.

Woodside High dance show

Woodside High School's Dance Team, coached by Kim Harvath, will present "Le Cirque," a carnival-themed show, at 8 p.m. Saturday, May 14, and 3 p.m. Sunday, May 15, in Woodside High's Performing Arts Center, 199 Churchill Ave.

Through dance, "Le Cirque" tells the story of a controlling ringmaster and his performers as they try to escape from him and his circus. Tickets are $15 for adults, $10 for students and children.

Visit and enter "dance team" in search box for ticket information.

The Woodside High School Dance Team won last year's High School Dance-Off.

Mystery author at library

Janet Dawson will discuss her latest novel, "Bit Player," at a meeting of the Mystery Readers Group at 7:15 p.m. Wednesday, May 18, in the downstairs meeting room of the Menlo Park Public Library.

"Bit Player," published by Perserverance Press, is Ms. Dawson's latest P.I. Jeri Howard mystery. In flashbacks, it deals with the lives of young "bit players" in 1940s' Hollywood and with the collectors of movie memorabilia in the Bay Area.

Ms. Dawson is the author of 10 Jeri Howard mysteries.

Family Day at Hidden Villa

Visitors may try barn dancing, ride a pony, or make a cornhusk doll an "Duveneck Day" to be held from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, May 21, at Hidden Villa, 26870 Moody Road, in Los Altos Hills.

There will also be gunny sack races, crafts, live music by the County Line Pickers, and a barbecue lunch for purchase. Cost is $10 per person.

Visit for more information.

Conference on aging at Little House

Dr. Walter Bortz of Portola Valley will be one of five speakers at the third annual Vital Aging Conference to be held Sunday, May 22, at Little House, 800 Middle Ave., in Menlo Park.

Dr. Bortz will speak about his new book, "Next Medicine: The Science and Civics of Health."

Dr. Eric Shapira, who practiced dentistry in Half Moon Bay for more than 30 years, will be the keynote speaker. He is an educator and author of "A New Wrinkle: What I Learned from Older People Who Never Acted Their Age."

Also speaking are Dr. Moira Fordyce, a geriatrician; Kathy Berra, a specialist in cardiovascular medicine; and chef Laura Stec, who will speak about "Feeding the Mind and Soul."

The public is invited to the conference. There is a $5 fee for those who pre-register; $10 at the door. The conference begins at 10 a.m. The Little House Cafe will be open for lunch, serving a fixed-price meal for $9. To pre-register, call 326-2025.

Collectible book sale at Menlo library

A first edition of Bret Harte's "In a Hallow of the Hills," published in 1895, will be among the featured items in a collectible and special book sale, sponsored by Friends of the Menlo Park Library, to be held from noon to 4 p.m. Sunday, May 22, at the library on Alma Street.

The sale includes books of many categories, including art, biography, history, mystery, science, children's, and more. "Book lovers will find treasures at reasonable prices, with some items as low as $3," says Michelle Burnham of the Menlo Park Library.

The sale will be held in the library's downstairs meeting room. The library is located at 800 Alma St. in Menlo Park.

Talk: Learning from failure

Looking for lessons in failure has a long history and scientist Donald Shockey will discuss this topic in the context of recent notable failures of manmade structures. This Cafe Scientifique talk for May begins at 6 p.m. Tuesday, May 10, at SRI International headquarters at Middlefield Road and Ringwood Avenue in Menlo Park.

Mr. Shockey, who is the director of the Center for Fracture Physics at SRI, will discuss projects at SRI concerned with an understanding of structural failure and how it plays into the design of better structures. His examples will range from medical devices to components for space missions.

Go to for directions, information on parking, and other details.


There are no comments yet for this post

Post a comment

Posting an item on Town Square is simple and requires no registration. Just complete this form and hit "submit" and your topic will appear online. Please be respectful and truthful in your postings so Town Square will continue to be a thoughtful gathering place for sharing community information and opinion. All postings are subject to our TERMS OF USE, and may be deleted if deemed inappropriate by our staff.

We prefer that you use your real name, but you may use any "member" name you wish.

Name: *

Select your neighborhood or school community: * Not sure?

Choose a category: *

Since this is the first comment on this story a new topic will also be started in Town Square! Please choose a category that best describes this story.

Comment: *

Verification code: *
Enter the verification code exactly as shown, using capital and lowercase letters, in the multi-colored box.

*Required Fields