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Archive for November, 2010

A wet Tuesday, but a dry Thanksgiving

The rain that started today is guaranteed to continue through the night and all day Tuesday, according to a 100% chance of rain in the forecast. Tuesday won’t just be wet; it’ll be chilly. The high for Tuesday and Wednesday is just 49 degrees, although the chance of rain on Wednesday is currently forecasted at 0%.

The forecast for Thanksgiving Thursday is a high of 53 degrees with no chance of rain.

The rain will stay away just long enough for a dry Thanksgiving though, as there is a slight chance of rain for Friday and rain forecasted all weekend long.

Posted on Monday, November 22nd, 2010
Under: Lamorinda | No Comments »

Campolindo volleyball wins NCS; state cross country qualifiers

The Campolindo girls volleyball team avenged their loss in last year’s NCS Division III quarterfinals to Sir Francis Drake by beating them in last night’s championship game, 25-12, 25-13, 25-19. The Cougars dominated the match from start to finish on their home floor, earning the program’s first NCS title since they won back-to-back titles in 2004 and 2005. The Cougars’ season will continue in the CIF state tournament.

Several local high school teams and individual runners qualified for the CIF Division III State Cross Country Championships. On the boys side, Campolindo’s team, as well as Adler Faulker and Tyler Troxel from Acalanes and Tyler Hanson from Miramonte qualified. The girls teams from Acalanes and Campolindo both qualified for the state event. The Miramonte girls had no qualifying runners.

Posted on Sunday, November 21st, 2010
Under: Lafayette, Moraga, Orinda, Schools, Sports | No Comments »

Fatal accident in Orinda Friday

Craig Hopkins, 49, of Concord, died Friday afternoon when the truck he was driving hit a pole.

According to initial reports from police investigators, Hopkins lost control of his Toyota pickup truck on a wet Fish Ranch Road around 3:50 p.m. Friday. The truck spun out before crashing into a nearby pole and killing Hopkins.

Crews from the Moraga-Orinda Fire District attempted to save Hopkins’ life at the scene, but they were unable to save him.

Hopkins was heading home from the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory toward Highway 24 at the time of the accident.

Police are investigating the accident to see if anything beyond the wet conditions contributed to the accident.

Posted on Saturday, November 20th, 2010
Under: Orinda | 1 Comment »

Miramonte advances; Acalanes and Campolindo lose

Miramonte survived a scare to become the only Lamorinda team to advance in the NCS football playoffs Friday night. The third-seeded Matadors were tied, 3-3, with the number 14 seed, Analy-Sebastopol, into the fourth quarter. A dominant performance by Miramonte’s running quarterback Ross Anderson proved to be enough though, as the Matadors scored two late touchdowns to win, 17-3. The Matadors will host the winner of the Alhambra-San Marin game in the second round.

Ninth-seeded Acalanes fell behind 27-0 at halftime in their game against eighth-seeded San Rafael. The Dons managed 12 second-half points to bring the final score to 27-12, but their season is over.

Campolindo’s season ended as well, as the Cougars were dominated by Cardinal Newman-Santa Rosa, 35-7.

Posted on Friday, November 19th, 2010
Under: Lafayette, Moraga, Orinda, Schools, Sports | No Comments »

Lamorinda week in review

Closure at last in the Orinda council and school board races.

Quiet Orinda is unable to convince the City Council to ban, or even study banning, leaf blowers.

Community groups are loving the Acalanes school district’s sports fields to death.

A dryer fire damages an Orinda home.

The Murray Lane Trail is opening tomorrow.

Orinda Academy teacher wins $10,000 award.

Acalanes High boys and Campolino High girls win NCS water polo titles. Meanwhile, the football teams gear up for the playoffs.

The Gaels pick up a big win against St. John’s, plus a laugher against Point Loma. The women team, however, loses to Cal.

Posted on Friday, November 19th, 2010
Under: election, Lafayette, Lamorinda, Moraga, Orinda, Schools, Sports | 1 Comment »

Murray Lane Trail opening (bring an umbrella)

Lafayette’s City Council, Parks, Trails and Recreation Commission and EBRPD board member John Sutter will be on hand tomorrow for the grand opening of the Murray Lane Trail.

The trail was a target of some neighbors who worried it would bring increased traffic to the area and called it a “trail to nowhere” because it does not yet link up with the Burton Ridge Trail.

The trail does connect to Lafayette Community Park, and grand opening participants will be able to walk the half-mile to Michael Lane and back for a second ribbon cutting in front of the newly renovated Cedar Room. Hot tea and pastries will be served in the Cedar Room.

Those who do not wish to walk the trail can leave after the first ribbon cutting of wait for the walking group to return.

Tomorrow’s forecast calls for rain, so if you plan to participate, bring an umbrella. The grand opening begins at 1 p.m. in the Lafayette Community Center back parking lot.

Posted on Friday, November 19th, 2010
Under: Lafayette | No Comments »

Orinda teacher receives $10,000 award

Jeff Quittman, of the Orinda Academy, was recently named one of three recipients of $10,000 awards from the Warren W. Eukel Teacher Trust. The award recognizes teachers for their work in Contra Costa County schools.

Quittman started teaching at the Orinda Academy 23 years ago and has been teaching the subjects of history, civics and economics ever since.

Quittman and the other two recipients received their awards at a special dinner tonight.

The Warren W. Eukel Teacher Trust was started to remember the work Eukel did during his many years on the Walnut Creek School Board. For more information on the trust, visit

For more information on the Orinda Academy, visit their website at

Posted on Thursday, November 18th, 2010
Under: Orinda, Schools | No Comments »

Miramonte, Acalanes and Campolindo enter NCS football playoffs

All three Lamorinda high school football teams earned spots in the NCS playoffs, although one (Campolindo) barely sneaked in.

Miramonte, the strongest of the Lamorinda teams and DFAL champion, earned the third seed and a first-round home game. They host the number 14 seed, Analy-Sebastopol, Friday night at 7:00 p.m.

Acalanes, the number nine seed, will play at eighth-seeded, San Rafael, at 7:00 p.m. Friday.

Also at 7:00 p.m. on Friday, Campolindo, who earned the 15th seed out of 16 playoff teams, will  play the second seed, Cardinal Newman-Santa Rosa.

None of the Lamorinda teams would face each other until potential semifinal match-ups.

Posted on Wednesday, November 17th, 2010
Under: Lafayette, Moraga, Orinda, Schools, Sports | No Comments »

Leaf blower issue goes international

australiaSpent a few minutes this afternoon talking about the leaf blower issue with a guy who hosts a morning radio show in South Australia and who totally said “G’Day” to me. And since it was already Thursday there, I’m definitely going to tell everyone I visited the future. But anyway, apparently Quiet Orinda‘s efforts are resonating internationally. So, take that, The New Yorker.

There was also no way I was going on Australian radio without mentioning how close Orinda is to Saint Mary’s and its cadre of Aussie hoopsters, but I don’t think the guy followed.

In more important news of the day, my story from last night’s meeting should be updated online shortly. You can find it here.

Posted on Wednesday, November 17th, 2010
Under: Uncategorized | No Comments »

Orinda council rejects leaf blower ban proposal

This will be posted to tomorrow morning and updated later in the afternoon:

ORINDA — The City Council has rejected a proposal from some residents to ban leaf blowers, ending an often-passionate debate about whether the devices are welcome in the city.

Anti-blower group Quiet Orinda, which spent nearly a year researching the issue, argued Tuesday the devices are a major source of noise and air pollution and that other methods of cleaning leaves are just as effective.

But council members said while they appreciated the group’s work, they saw neither a justification nor a desire from the greater community to ban blowers.

A number of residents questioned Quiet Orinda’s claims and told the council a leaf blower ban would be excessive.

Posted on Tuesday, November 16th, 2010
Under: Orinda | No Comments »