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Archive for October, 2009

Events for middle school girls and their parents

The Moraga Junior Women’s Club is sponsoring self-defense classes for middle school girls on Nov. 6, 8 and 15. The classes are one hour each and will take place at The Karate & Fitness Place USA in Moraga. For more information or to register for the classes, visit the Moraga Junior Women’s Club website at The last day to register is Thursday, Oct. 29.

The Lamorinda AAUW Sister to Sister Conference Team is sponsoring an event called “How to Raise a Strong, Independent Daughter and Survive-True Confessions of Mothers of Daughters.” The event will be at JM Intermediate School on Wednesday, Nov. 4, from 7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. A panel of moms from the community will be on hand to discuss how they raised their daughters.

Posted on Sunday, October 25th, 2009
Under: Moraga, Schools | No Comments »

Acalanes beats Miramonte; Campolindo also wins

Acalanes proved once again that they are a much improved football team from last year as the Dons knocked off Miramonte, 14-7, in a Friday night DFAL match-up. The game was all tied up at 7-7 until Acalanes quarterbackTyler Caldwell completed a 40-yard touchdown pass to Lucas Levine with only 33 seconds left in the game. Miramonte made a final push to get close, but a last second pass was intercepted by the Dons.

Campolindo got back on track by beating Dublin, 28-21, although the Cougars needed some big plays late to ensure the victory. Quarterback Tommy Stephens scored the game-winning touchdown on a one-yard run with only 1:22 left in the game.

Posted on Saturday, October 24th, 2009
Under: Lafayette, Moraga, Orinda, Schools, Sports | No Comments »

Moraga native set to release first novel

Moraga native Nina LaCour is having a book release party for her first novel tonight. The book release party is at Diesel Bookstore in Oakland.

LaCour’s novel is called “Hold Still” and follows the main character, 16-year-old Caitlin, following the suicide of her best friend. Caitlin finds her friend’s diary and begins to cope with her friend’s difficulties in life and how her other friends cope with the death.

In addition to her career as a writer, LaCour teaches English at Maybeck High School in Berkeley.

LaCour hopes that the book serves as an uplifting story for girls similar to those she teaches.

Posted on Friday, October 23rd, 2009
Under: Moraga | No Comments »

Controlled detonation in Orinda

In case you heard a ‘splosion in Orinda yesterday, here’s why (from the city):

A controlled detonation of explosive materials occurred in the 600 block of Miner Road late this afternoon at 6:30 pm. Orinda Police, MOFD and the Walnut Creek Police Bomb Squad was on scene. The detonation was non hazardous and under the supervision of the police department. The materials, which were old biology samples containing small amounts of crystallized picric acid, had become unstable. The materials were voluntarily turned over to police for destruction. For the safety of the surrounding community, Police officials determined the safest, and most effective method to destroy the materials was to detonate it near its current location so to avoid traveling with it throughout the community. At this time, the matter has been taken care of and there is no threat of harm to the public.

This came up at last night’s quad-agency meeting (story coming later today) during discussion about emergency preparedness and inter-agency communications. City Manager Janet Keeter said the city has a reverse 911 system they wanted to use to let people in the area know what was going on, but the county sheriff’s office felt the incident wasn’t serious enough to activate it.

As the various agencies move forward in talking about this issue, something that is sure to come up — and was alluded to last night — is the balance between trying to inform people and trying to not cause unnecessary panics.

Posted on Friday, October 23rd, 2009
Under: Lamorinda, Moraga, Orinda | No Comments »

We’re #107!

Okay, being 107th in something may not always be worth cheering, but when you’re talking about a list of America’s best sports cities, it’s impressive to see tiny Moraga even make the list.

Sure there are Campolino sports and the aquatic center, but I’m going to exercise a little bias and chalk it up to my alma mater: The Gaels know how to rock McKeon Pavilion.

The top half of the list is pretty heavy with cities with pro teams. Moraga comes after a long line of other college towns like Lubbock, Texas (Texas Tech); State College, Penn. (Penn State); and South Bend, Ind. (Notre Dame). But I’m going to venture to guess most of the 1-106 schools are bigger than St. Mary’s.

And only three cities on the list (as far as I can tell) have fewer people than Moraga: Storrs, Conn., home of the University of Connecticut (20,000 undergrads); Clemson, S.C., home of Clemson University (14,000 undergrads); and Troy, Ala., home of Troy University (21,600 undergrads).

With about 16,000 residents in Moraga and about 2,500 undergrads at St. Mary’s, I’m going to say Moraga being mentioned among other great sports towns is pretty darned impressive (for some others maybe not, depending on how much game-day traffic irks you).

Basketball season starts Nov. 13.

Posted on Thursday, October 22nd, 2009
Under: Moraga | 1 Comment »

Three Lafayette restaurants make it into Michelin Guide

Three Lafayette restaurants earned their way into the highly-coveted pages of the 2010 edition of the Michelin Guide. Metro Lafayette, Artisan Bistro and Chevalier were all honored in one of the premier restaurant guides in the world.

Restaurants are selected for the guide based on a variety of factors including their food, ambiance and service. Michelin has inspectors assigned to different regions where they spend the year canvassing their region’s restaurants looking for the absolute best all-around restaurants.

For more information or to make reservations at the restaurants mentioned, visit their websites:
Metro Lafayette –
Artisan Bistro –
Chevalier –

Posted on Thursday, October 22nd, 2009
Under: Lafayette, Restaurants | No Comments »

Orinda man shot four times in Oakland

A 43-year-old Orinda man was shot four times in Oakland on Sunday. The man was protecting his friend’s medical marijuana when four men attempted to steal the plants. The Orinda man tried to stop them, but he was shot in the arm, shin, thigh and stomach in the process.

Following the shooting, the Orinda man was rushed to the hospital where he was considered to be in serious but stable condition.

A $5,000 reward is being offered for information that leads to the arrests of the suspects in the shooting. The police can be reached by calling 510-238-3426.

The name of the victim has not been released.

Posted on Wednesday, October 21st, 2009
Under: Crime, Orinda | No Comments »

Acalanes on lockdown

Acalanes High School is currently on lockdown as police believe a burglar is hiding somewhere in the area.

According to police, a man was burglarizing a home in the neighborhood bordering Acalanes when residents of the home returned. The man fled the scene.

Police have set up a perimeter in the neighborhood and are actively searching for the burglar. Police dogs have been brought in to help with the search.

The school will remain on lockdown until police are able to apprehend the suspect or until the area has been determined to be clear and safe.

Posted on Tuesday, October 20th, 2009
Under: Crime, Lafayette, Schools | No Comments »

Rotary Club of Moraga earn honors

The Rotary Club of Moraga was recently named the Best Medium Club of the Year for their district. The Rotary Club of Moraga belongs to District 5160, which is made up of 67 different clubs in Northern California. This was the second consecutive year they earned this honor.

Jim Campbell, of the Rotary Club of Moraga, was honored for his work as Governor of the District. Rich Render, the webmaster for the club’s website, received an award for Best Website. The website for the Rotary Club of Moraga can be found by visiting

Vickie Devlin recently became the new president of the Rotary Club of Moraga.

Posted on Monday, October 19th, 2009
Under: Moraga | No Comments »

At least one Vampire Weekend fan in Lafayette

He’ll be happily attending the grand opening of the new Lafayette Library and Learning Center on the evening of Nov. 7, but a small part of Lafayette City Manager Steve Falk may be wishing he was a few blocks away at the Town Hall Theatre. Turns out, Falk is a big Vampire Weekend fan.

Tickets to the indie-rock group’s concert that night sold out within minutes, and count Falk among those left without. And if you’re also among those who won’t be getting into the group’s only Bay Area concert — or if indie-rock isn’t your style — here’s the link to more information about the library gala. The tickets are much more expensive but also much more available.

Vampire Weekend is certainly within the spectrum of music I enjoy, but due to the fact that I primarily listen to KNBR on the radio (home of my Giants and Niners) and not music, I hadn’t heard any of their stuff before this morning. If you’re curious, you can hear the first single of their new album here. It’s not bad.

Posted on Monday, October 19th, 2009
Under: Lafayette | No Comments »