A party to die for

SAN LORENZO — A Block Party to Die For will raise funds for the San Lorenzo Pioneer Cemetery.

The party takes place from 4 to 8 p.m. Saturday, July 27, at College and Usher streets. There will be tours of the historic cemetery, carnival games, crafts and food. Live music will be provided by the Bay Area Blues Society Caravan and Leo Oliver and the Blues Knockouts.

The Friends of the San Lorenzo Pioneer Cemetery and the Hayward Area Historical Society are hosting the event, and all proceeds will support preservation of the cemetery.

The cemetery at Hesperian Boulevard and College Street in San Lorenzo recorded its first burial in 1854. East Bay historic figures William Meek and John Lewelling are among the 2,500 buried there.

Tickets are $10, or $5 for children and seniors. They can be bought at the event or in advance at 510-581-0223.


Parks district seeking advisory committee members

HAYWARD — If you love local parks, now is the chance to have your say about them.

The Hayward Area Recreation and Park District is accepting applications for its Citizens Advisory Committee. The committee meets four times a year and reviews park design projects and program, makes recommendations to the district board and works on projects requested by the board.

To qualify, you must live in Hayward, Castro Valley, San Lorenzo, Fairview or the other areas of the unincorporated western part of the county.

Applications can be downloaded from www.haywardrec.org or call 510-881-6704.


Senior Scam Stopper planned for June 21

CASTRO VALLEY –Seniors are often targeted in scams. To help them become more aware of current frauds, Assemblyman Bill Quirk and the Contractors State License Board are holding a free Senior Scam Stopper event Friday, June 21.

Those attending will get information on frauds in home repair, auto repair, telecommunications, identify theft, Medicare and other topics. Seniors are not the only ones who should be aware of potential scams; the free session is open to all.

It takes place from 1 to 3 p.m. at the Kenneth Aitken Senior Center, 17800 Redwood Road, Castro Valley. Call 520-583-8818 for reservation.



Military recruits to be honored

CASTRO VALLEY — New military recruits will be honored at a ceremony June 2 at Castro Valley Center for the Performing Arts.

Congressman Eric Swalwell, D-Dublin, will help hand out certificates to the more than 50 recruits from the Bay Area.

A Soldier’s Medal also will be presented to Staff Sgt. Jason Ramsey of the Alameda Recruiting Center. Ramsey is credited with helping rescue a woman in June 2012 from a car that had gone into the Oakland estuary and was sinking.

The ceremony takes place 1 to 4 p.m. at 19501 Redwood Road. For more information, go to www.smr1.org.


Youth sought for Hayward Youth Commission

HAYWARD — The city is looking for students interested in serving on the Hayward Youth Commission.

Students must be ages 13 to 20 at the time of appointment and live in the city or within the boundaries of the Hayward Unified School District.

Applications are due by 5 p.m. May 16. Interviews will take place May 23.

The commission advises the mayor and City Council, Hayward Area Recreation and Park District and the school district about issues affecting young people. Members also work on projects such as organizing conferences.

Application forms may be found on the city’s website, www.hayward-ca.gov, under city government, boards-commissions-committees. They also can be requested from the city clerk’s office, 777 B St., fourth floor, telephone 510-583-4400.


More cleanups scheduled

Three cleanups are planned for the unincorporated area.

On Saturday, volunteers will gather at Mervin Morris Park, Nielsen and Grant avenues in San Lorenzo, to pick up trash for Earth Day. The event starts at 8:30 a.m., ending with a free barbecue lunch at the park. Preregistration is requested at 510-276-4554. The event is hosted by Supervisor Wilma Chan and the San Lorenzo Village Homeowners Association.

On April 27, Supervisor Nate Miley and Friends of San Lorenzo Creek will join Castro Valley Sanitary District’s Earth Day Cleanup of the Castro Valley BART parking lot and Castro Valley Creek. There will be two staging areas: the CVS parking lot area, 3667 Castro Valley Blvd.; and Miley’s district office, 20993 Redwood Road.

Registration begins at 8:30 a.m. To sign up, go to www.cvsan.org or call 510-537-0757. For questions about parking, contact Anna Gee at 510-537-0757.

And on May 4, there will be a cleanup of the San Lorenzo Pioneer Cemetery from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Those joining in are asked to take rakes, gloves and gardening equipment and meet at the corner of College and Usher streets. The cleanup is hosted by the Hayward Area Historical Society and the San Lorenzo Pioneer Cemetery Friends.


Larry and the ducks

HAYWARD — The Hayward Rotary Club, like its counterparts throughout the country, playfully fines its members during its weekly meetings to help raise money for the organization.

Fines are routinely levied for birthdays and vacations. But the club gets creative, customizing fines for targeted individuals.

One of those “lucky” individuals at Monday’s meeting was Larry Lepore, Hayward Area Recreation and Parks District parks superintendent.

Hayward Rotary President Brian Schott noted that Lepore had closed a bathroom at the Duck Pond, aka the San Lorenzo Community Park.

“Where are the poor ducks going to go to the bathroom now?” Schott asked.

“Where they’ve been going for 40 years,” Lepore replied, trying to defend himself by adding that the district had installed portable toilets.

Schott countered that the poor little ducks were not taught how to use them, and fined Lepore $10.

HARD is replacing the old restrooms with ones that meet ADA standards. Lepore said later that the new restrooms could be open as early as this weekend.


Loop meeting Thursday

In case you missed it, Hayward staff members will be holding a meeting Thursday to talk about the loop and the rest of the Route 238 Corridor Improvement project.

It seems everybody has an opinion on the new one-way traffic loop through downtown Hayward that started March 16. My perspective? It seems to work if you’re in the correct lane to get to where you want to go. I’m hoping that with final paving, striping and signs, it will be more clearer.

I have been testing out the loop from different approaches for a week. It is still confusing as to which lane you need to be in, but I think we’ll figure that out. I do hope that Hayward PD has radar guns out on Foothill Boulevard headed north; the tickets from speeders could generate quite a bit of income for the city.

Drivers headed east on A Street seem to be confused when they hit the one-way segment. Some are looping back down B Street and then right to A Street west; others seem to have no idea where to go. I’m pretty sure I would be confused, if not downright lost, if I were not from Hayward and was trying to head east on A Street.

Now, what does this mean to downtown merchants? I’m sure they will express their opinions at Thursday’s meeting, which starts at 9 a.m. in Room 1C at City Hall, 777 B St. Can’t make the meeting? The city’s loop website: haywardloop.org.


Food for thought

CASTRO VALLEY — While many think of St. Patrick’s Day as a time for wearing of the green, the community is invited to be green in eating habits at the same time.

A free screening of the documentary “Forks Over Knives” is planned for this coming Sunday, March 17, at the Castro Valley Library.

The film will focus on how a low-fat, plant-based diet can reduce the risk of heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure and autoimmune diseases while helping the planet.

Snacks will be provided, and a short discussion will follow the film, sponsored by Starr King Unitarian Universalist Church.

The event begins at 1:30 p.m. at the library, 3600 Norbridge Ave., Castro Valley.


Girding for the Hayward traffic loop

The city of Hayward has started its campaign to let people know that some downtown streets will become one-way on March 15.

The city hired someone to put together an explainer that is going in water bills and is online. It contains some interesting statements: “The Loop is easy!” “The Loop is a small change with a BIG new look for Downtown!” “Easy Access to all Downtown Businesses.” Hmmm.

There also is a typo in the insert that was sent out to many water customers and on big signs along Mission Boulevard between A and B and near the main library: It refers to Off the Gird. As gourmet food truck followers know, that should be Off the Grid.

In fairness, a Hayward official said the typo was pointed out by city staff. But apparently not soon enough.

The city also has made a video explaining the loop. It has little colored cars speeding through downtown with cheerful music in the background. The voice-over refers to “the downtown one-way traffic circulation, or the ‘loop’ as it’s more affectionately called.” Gosh, I can’t remember the loop and “affectionately” being used in the same sentence.

Check it out at www.youtube.com/watch?v=09hSr8GlPq4&feature=youtu.be. There’s also a link at http://user.govoutreach.com/hayward/faq.php?cid=14252, but I couldn’t get it to load.

(Sorry, but I have not been able to get links to work on this blog. Working on it.)

Starting March 15, Foothill will be one-way north between its intersection with Jackson Street-Mission Boulevard up to A Street. A will be one-way west between Foothill and Mission, and Mission will be one-way south from A down to the Jackson-Mission-Foothill intersection.