Recent News

Friday, December 13, 2019

Sunday: Volunteer day offers rare chance to visit Hawthorns preserve in Portola Valley

Pitch in to help restore habitat at Hawthorns, a Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District preserve, on Sunday, Dec. 15, and learn about the unique ecosystem at this preserve, which currently can be visited only with a docent.

Friday, 7:23 PM | No comments yet
At the table

"I'm deep in Kurdistan right now," Jamis MacNiven, owner of Buck's in Woodside, wrote back to my late-summer email asking to meet him for a lunch interview. "I have to go play polo now with a dead goat. It's a Kurdistan thing."

Friday, 3:55 PM | No comments yet
Preventing disasters in open space preserves

With nearly 65,000 acres of open space preserves, the Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District carries some of the greatest burden -- and potential -- for preventing wildfires locally.

Friday, 11:49 AM | No comments yet
Woodside council picks Fluet as new mayor

The Woodside Town Council chose council members Ned Fluet and Brian Dombkowski to serve as the new mayor and mayor pro tem, respectively, at its meeting on Tuesday, Dec. 10.

Friday, 11:44 AM | 1 comment
Atherton police host ‘Shop With a Cop’ event for kids in need

Nine local students spent the morning of Dec. 11 on a holiday shopping spree at Target in Redwood City to pick out gifts for a family member or a friend, a toy for themselves, and a necessity like a scarf or socks.

Friday, 11:23 AM | 1 comment
Atherton resident Ellis Joseph Alden, founder of Woodside Hotel Group, dies at 80

Atherton resident Ellis Joseph Alden, an attorney who founded the Woodside Hotel Group and Alden Vineyards, died on Dec. 2 following a brief illness.

Friday, 7:59 AM | 1 comment

Thursday, December 12, 2019

Join us for a discussion

Almanac reporter Kate Bradshaw will be speaking with the League of Women Voters of South San Mateo County about her reporting series, "Uneven Ground," on Saturday, Dec. 14.

Thursday, 3:47 PM | No comments yet
Menlo Park: Rollover accident near Trader Joe's results in DUI arrest

Police arrested a 29-year-old Menlo Park man who allegedly drove a Mercedes into a parked, unoccupied vehicle, causing his car to roll over on Menlo Avenue last night.

Thursday, 10:44 AM | No comments yet
Local nonprofit welcomes new executive director

A local nonprofit led by Menlo Park resident Angie Holman is working to provide Ravenswood City School District students a sense of stability in a district undergoing many changes and facing complex challenges.

Thursday, 9:19 AM | No comments yet
Menlo Park fire district to showcase all-electric engine at open house

The Menlo Park Fire Protection District is looking into its future by checking out a new, all-electric fire engine that promises to cure a lot of ills that plague conventional diesel-powered fire engines.

Thursday, 8:38 AM | 2 comments
BevMo! pays $359K consumer protection settlement

Retail giant BevMo, which has a location in Menlo Park, will pay $359,000 to resolve a consumer protection lawsuit contending that the company sometimes charged customers more than the lowest posted or advertised price for items.

Thursday, 8:05 AM | No comments yet
Alleged Skyline Boulevard killer ordered to Napa State Hospital

Pacifica resident Malik Dosouqi, 26, who has been charged with two murders and five felony counts after he was arrested for a pair of killings on Skyline Boulevard in Woodside in June, was ordered committed to Napa State Hospital.

Thursday, 7:38 AM | No comments yet

Wednesday, December 11, 2019

Seven-digit county emergency dispatch numbers working again

Seven-digit emergency dispatch phone lines in San Mateo County are back in service this afternoon (Dec. 11) after being damaged during construction near the County Center in Redwood City, county officials said.

Wednesday, 2:13 PM | No comments yet
Menlo Park council open to bold new climate goal: carbon neutrality by 2030

Faced with the increasingly real and local threat of climate change, the Menlo Park City Council talked on Tuesday (Dec. 10) about a possible bold new climate goal for the city: to become carbon neutral by 2030.

Wednesday, 11:58 AM | 3 comments
Holiday Fund: Offering a free meal in a safe, friendly place

St. Anthony's Padua Dining Room, one of 10 local nonprofits supported by The Almanac's Holiday Fund this year, has been providing a free meal in a safe, friendly place for 45 years.

Wednesday, 8:34 AM | No comments yet
Atherton council puts development tax on hold for further study

A construction and development tax -- or similar types of taxes that town staff says could provide "substantial revenues" -- is on hold in Atherton after being considered last week by the City Council.

Wednesday, 8:16 AM | 7 comments

Tuesday, December 10, 2019

Seven-digit San Mateo County emergency dispatch numbers not working

Seven-digit San Mateo County emergency dispatch phone lines went down Tuesday afternoon (Dec. 10), a sheriff's spokesperson said. The phone lines are still down as of about 5:45 p.m.

Tuesday, 6:00 PM | No comments yet
Today: Wildfire preparedness, open space, housing on council agenda

The Portola Valley Town Council will consider and create priorities around recently released recommendations from an ad hoc wildfire preparedness committee at its Wednesday, Dec. 11, meeting, according to Town Manager Jeremy Dennis.

Tuesday, 5:06 PM | 2 comments
Facebook wants to build on what may be a former indigenous village

Facebook has proposed to redevelop an office park for its planned new Willow Village. But what lies buried beneath may be the remains of a centuries-old Native American community.

Tuesday, 3:36 PM | 4 comments
Menlo Park: Survey out to learn how people commute

The city of Menlo Park is looking for employers and employees to respond to a survey put out by consultants it's working with to learn more about how people commute to and from the city.

Tuesday, 9:53 AM | 1 comment
Menlo Park district assistant to superintendent resigns

Menlo Park City School District Superintendent Erik Burmeister's executive assistant left the district last week to take a position in the East Bay working for a former top leader in the district.

Tuesday, 9:42 AM | No comments yet
How to protect your home against wildfire

Property owners play a vital role in preventing the spread of wildfires, particularly to their homes, according to Palo Alto Fire Chief Geoffrey Blackshire.

Tuesday, 7:58 AM | No comments yet

Monday, December 9, 2019

Portola Valley commission incumbents reappointed to new terms

The Portola Valley Town Council on Nov. 13 chose incumbent commissioners Judith Hasko and Nicolas Targ to serve new four-year terms on the Planning Commission.

Monday, 7:18 PM | 4 comments
MayView clinics to merge with Ravenswood, ending 47 years of operation

The MayView network of north Santa Clara County clinics serving low-income families will be under new management next year, owned and operated by the San Mateo County-based nonprofit Ravenswood Family Health Center.

Monday, 2:32 PM | No comments yet
Holiday Fund: LifeMoves is a haven of support for displaced families

LifeMoves, one of 10 local nonprofits that will benefit from The Almanac's Holiday Fund this year, provides interim housing and supportive services for homeless families and individuals.

Monday, 11:00 AM | No comments yet
Portola Valley school district to host wildfire preparedness event

The Portola Valley School District and Woodside Fire Protection District will host an educational event on Tuesday, Dec. 10, to help community members prepare for wildfire threats.

Monday, 7:13 AM | No comments yet

Sunday, December 8, 2019

Midpeninsula home sales for the week of Dec. 2

A complete list of home sales on the Midpeninsula, where Atherton recorded the highest sale at $14 million for a six-bedroom midcentury home.

Sunday, 4:12 PM | No comments yet

Saturday, December 7, 2019

County seeks donations, volunteers for holiday toy drive

People looking for a way to support kids in need may consider donating toys or gift cards to the Children's Fund of San Mateo County, which is hosting a toy drive this holiday season.

Saturday, 9:59 AM | No comments yet

Friday, December 6, 2019

Atherton celebrates holidays with first annual lighting ceremony

Atherton's Dec. 5 "tree lighting" ceremony was unique not only because the town hadn't hosted such an event before, but also because there was no tree to light up. But that didn't stop residents from gathering for the holiday fete.

Friday, 5:19 PM | No comments yet
Empty Amazon boxes addressed to Menlo Park residents found in San Jose

Dozens of empty Amazon shipping boxes, many of which were addressed to Menlo Park residents, have been found in a creek in East San Jose, according to San Jose Police Department spokeswoman Gina Tepoorten.

Friday, 2:24 PM | 2 comments
Spell of wet, windy weather expected through the weekend

More wet and windy weather is on its way to the Bay Area starting Friday and continuing into the weekend, according to the National Weather Service.

Friday, 11:50 AM | No comments yet
How a Menlo Park baseball coach is teaching teens about tech-life balance

Menlo Park native David Klein has spent the last decade helping young athletes succeed in baseball. Now he's taking on a more complex challenge: helping teens disconnect from their devices and find tech-life balance.

Friday, 8:33 AM | No comments yet
Holiday cheer: Local traditions continue

Locals are in luck with so many popular holiday happenings back on the calendar this year.

Friday, 8:09 AM | No comments yet

Thursday, December 5, 2019

Canada Road open again after hazardous materials incident

Canada Road was reopened between Edgewood Road and state Route 92 at about 5:30 p.m. Thursday, after being closed from 3:30 p.m. because of a hazardous materials problem, according to the San Mateo County Sheriff's Office.

Thursday, 4:31 PM | No comments yet
Planning Commission looks at zoning compliance for Neely Wine tasting room

Portola Valley's Planning Commission discussed compliance with general plan and zoning law requirements of a conditional use permit application for wine tasting, onsite wine sales and an event space at Neely Wine, but took no action.

Thursday, 4:20 PM | No comments yet
New Menlo Park fire station receives design award

Menlo Park's Fire Station 6, which incorporates an innovative yet historically based design, has received a 2019 National Firehouse Fire Station Design Award sponsored by Firehouse magazine.

Thursday, 2:40 PM | 2 comments
Atherton: tree lighting ceremony tonight

The town of Atherton will celebrate the holidays with a tree and water tower lighting ceremony on Dec. 5 in Holbrook-Palmer Park.

Thursday, 12:35 PM | No comments yet
Holiday Fund: Upward Scholars offers support and hope

Upward Scholars, one of 10 local nonprofits supported by The Almanac's Holiday Fund this year, helps students achieve their dreams for a better future.

Thursday, 10:02 AM | No comments yet
Holiday tree lighting kicks off weekend of seasonal festivities

Across Menlo Park, the holiday season will kick into full gear with a busy schedule of seasonal festivities scheduled this weekend.

Thursday, 9:58 AM | 1 comment
Stanford law professor testifies to Trump's 'abuse of power' in House Judiciary Committee

Stanford Law School professor Pamela Karlan was one of three legal scholars who told the House Judiciary Committee on Wednesday that President Donald Trump has committed impeachable offenses.

Thursday, 9:37 AM | 6 comments
Menlo Park city attorney announces plans to retire early next year

After a career spanning 41 years with the city of Menlo Park, City Attorney Bill McClure has announced plans to retire sometime in the first quarter of 2020.

Thursday, 9:24 AM | 1 comment
Ravenswood leadership proposes closing Brentwood, Willow Oaks elementary schools

The Ravenswood City School District has proposed closing two of its schools next fall: Brentwood Academy in East Palo Alto and Willow Oaks Elementary in Menlo Park. The plan calls for Willow Oaks students moving to Belle Haven School.

Thursday, 8:05 AM | 1 comment

Wednesday, December 4, 2019

Alleged serial killer pleads not guilty in 1973 murder case

A former Stanford hospital medical technician pleaded not guilty on Monday morning for the 1973 murder of a 21-year-old Stanford University graduate.

Wednesday, 4:59 PM | No comments yet
Earthquake safety retrofit planned for I-280 bridges at Sand Hill, Alpine

The California Department of Transportation, or Caltrans, is planning to improve seismic safety at four key local highway bridges.

Wednesday, 11:54 AM | No comments yet
Menlo Park: New playground invites kids of all abilities to romp

After nearly five months of closure, the playground at Nealon Park is back and better than ever.

Wednesday, 11:33 AM | 7 comments
Atherton City Council to explore development tax

A possible construction and development tax will be discussed during the Atherton City Council's Wednesday afternoon, Dec. 4, meeting. Such a tax could have generated from about $800,000 to $2.5 million in past years, staff reports.

Wednesday, 9:08 AM | 9 comments

Tuesday, December 3, 2019

New survey detects rapid growth in sudden oak tree death syndrome

A survey of the spread of sudden oak death (SOD) statewide found that oak trees surveyed in Peninsula towns between Redwood City and Los Altos Hills have a 21.6% infection rate, with significant new outbreaks reported.

Tuesday, 5:47 PM | 1 comment
Portola Valley: Neely tasting room on Dec. 4 Planning Commission agenda

The Portola Valley Planning Commission will hold a third hearing on Wednesday, Dec. 4, on a revised application from Neely Wine for a conditional use permit to allow a wine tasting room and event space on its 230-acre property.

Tuesday, 4:27 PM | No comments yet
Menlo Park's office space growth exceeds that of similar small cities in state

A new report finds Menlo Park ranks fifth among small California cities for the amount of office space built in the last five years. A closer look reveals just how much space in the city is devoted to office space per capita.

Tuesday, 11:47 AM | 18 comments
Holiday Fund: Finding help, and giving it back

The Ecumenical Hunger Program, one of 10 local nonprofits that will benefit from The Almanac's Holiday Fund this year, does much more than satisfy the community's need for food, Executive Director Lesia Preston emphasizes.

Tuesday, 10:36 AM | No comments yet
Water billing vendor shutters, leaving city scrambling

FATHOM, the water billing contractor that Menlo Park Municipal Water has worked with for the past nine years to read water meters, bill customers and provide customer service, abruptly went out of business at the end of November.

Tuesday, 10:28 AM | No comments yet
In the age of 'fake news,' Stanford study finds high schoolers unskilled at assessing online information

Many high school students are unable to assess the credibility of online information, a new Stanford study has found. This poses a threat to "the vitality of American democracy," the researchers said.

Tuesday, 7:15 AM | 11 comments

Monday, December 2, 2019

Bill Gates to award $10 million to local Alzheimer's group

Part the Cloud founder Mikey Hoag of Atherton is "thrilled" and "energized" to announce a new partnership with philanthropist Bill Gates to help fight Alzheimer's disease.

Monday, 4:02 PM | No comments yet
Portola Valley school district shares new classroom designs

Parents, community members and administrators gathered at Ormondale School last month to view mock-ups of schematic design plans for changes to the Portola Valley School District's two schools.

Monday, 11:30 AM | 1 comment
High levels of probable carcinogen reported at Menlo Park restaurant

A building housing a Japanese restaurant and, formerly, a dry cleaning business in Menlo Park has been found to have elevated levels of a substance often used at dry cleaning facilities and a probable cancer-causing chemical.

Monday, 7:05 AM | 6 comments

Sunday, December 1, 2019

Home sales for the week of Nov. 25

A complete list of home sales on the Midpeninsula, where Atherton recorded the highest sale at $21,750,000 for a 6-bedroom house built in 2015 with a home theater, dining terrace and formal entry.

Sunday, 8:06 AM | No comments yet

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The holidays are here!

From live music to a visit with Santa, here's a look at some local holiday activities to help you get into the spirit of the season.