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High school football update

Campolindo improved to 2-0 on the season with a 41-14 victory over St. Patrick-St. Vincent on Friday night. The Cougars were led by their star quarterback, Tommy Stephens, who passed for 296 yards and four touchdowns.

After injuries to their starting and back-up quarterbacks, Miramonte had to turn to their third-string quarterback, Nick Sheehan, for their game against Eureka. Sheehan played like a starter, racking up 257 passing yards and six touchdowns. Miramonte is 1-1 on the season.

The Acalanes football team had the week off with no game scheduled. The Dons are 1-0 so far this season after a 34-7 victory in their opener against Hercules.

Posted on Monday, September 3rd, 2012
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Janice De Jesus’ book signing in Orinda Saturday, May 19

Janice De Jesus, a frequent contributor to the Sun, will be signing copies of her new book “Omstruck,” about healing emotional pain through yoga and meditation, Saturday, May 19 at Orinda Books. Go down and say hello, and even buy one of her new books!

Posted on Friday, May 18th, 2012
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Gas scare in Lafayette

A gas leak in Lafayette left many residents worried for hours Thursday.

A contractor digging in the 3500 block of Mt. Diablo Boulevard broke the main of a natural gas line Thursday around 11:30 a.m., resulting in a leak until PG&E was able to shut the flow of the gas down.

Several buildings near the leak were evacuated and traffic on Mt. Diablo Boulevard was stopped.

Once the flow of gas was shut down, PG&E crews worked to repair the main.

The buildings were reopened and traffic was allowed through around 3:30 p.m. when PG&E workers deemed the area to be safe and back to normal.

Posted on Friday, February 24th, 2012
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Occupy movement comes to Moraga

A private college in one of the Bay Area’s wealthiest town’s may not be the first location that comes to mind to join the Occupy Wall Street movement, but dozens gathered on the chapel lawn at Saint Mary’s College today to hear speeches from students and professors showing solidarity with protestors in Oakland and across the country.

Billed as a teach-in, the event definitely had the feel of a rally, albeit a relatively laid-back one. Students relaxed in the sun on picnic tables and blankets. Professors of history and politics shared their insights on the occupy movement, but also implored students to enact changes to what they see as an unjust political and economic system.

One staff member told me the event was very appropriate given the college’s traditional emphasis on social justice.

In one interesting moment, one professor took the stage while on a cell phone with another professor who was traveling from the Oakland protests. The professor on stage relayed the other professor’s speech to students and asked them to repeat it line by line. My favorite: “Please think for yourself,” which just reminded me of this.

Several students traveled to Oakland to join the rally in that city. Another teach-in is scheduled for tomorrow.

Posted on Wednesday, November 2nd, 2011
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Your October Quiet Orinda update

Just because Orinda’s leaf blower foes are ready to compromise does not mean the City Council is going to take this issue up again.

The group Quiet Orinda asked the city council earlier this month for a spot on a City Council agenda. City Manager Janet Keeter responded about a week later, saying they need a majority of council members to agree to put it on an agenda — something the group does not have right now.

I checked in with a Brown Act expert last week, who said, unlike K-12 school districts, where constituents have the right to have an item placed on a future meeting agenda, cities (and other boards) have complete discretion over what lands on their agendas.

So Quiet Orinda is in a bind when it comes to getting the council to take up leaf blowers again. They cannot force the City Council to discuss the issue. They can (and have) bring the topic up during the “public comment” section of council meetings, but by law council members are barred from acting on or even discussing anything brought up during public comment.

Several Quiet Orinda members say they didn’t get a fair shake when the council heard this issue last November. The group was given 15 minutes to make a presentation, the council heard hours of public comment then discussed the matter among themselves before deciding to take no action. That’s pretty standard. Certainly, the council could have given Quiet Orinda more than 15 minutes to make its case, or set up a separate leaf blower “workshop” allowing for a more free-flowing exchange of ideas. But from a procedural standpoint, the discussion that November evening was not any different than any other at a City Council meeting.

Bottom line: It looks like leaf blower foes will need to get three City Council members on their side if they want to see any city action on this matter.

Document time. Here’s Quiet Orinda’s letter to the city: Quiet Orinda Oct. 4, 2011 letter. And here’s Keeter’s response: City Manager Oct. 12, 2011 response to Quiet Orinda.

Posted on Monday, October 24th, 2011
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State GOP comes to Lafayette tonight, wants to hear from you

We received the news release kind of at the last minute, but this is looks like a worthy local event and is aimed (primarily) at high schoolers:

State Republicans coming to Lafayette for high school event tonight

LAFAYETTE — The California Republican Party’s “California Speaks Out” Tour comes to the Lafayette Veterans Memorial Building Tuesday night with its first town hall for high school students, part of its interactive town hall series.

The tour is designed to bring tomorrow’s leaders from all political views together to connect with them on a personal level and discuss the issues that affect their lives and their futures.

The event, free and open to the public, begins at 7 p.m. at the veterans building, 3780 Mt. Diablo Blvd. in Lafayette, and will be hosted by California Republican Party Chairman Tom Del Beccaro, a Lafayette resident, and KSFO-AM morning radio show host Brian Sussman.

Also scheduled to speak are Contra Costa County Supervisor Mary Piepho, UC Berkeley College Republicans President Shawn Lewis and Ivy Allen of the Monte Vista High School Republican Club.

“We’re keeping our promise to engage new communities and give a voice to people who haven’t had the opportunity to connect directly with Republican leaders,” Del Beccaro said in a statement. “Reaching out to high school students through town hall events like this, no matter what their political background, is just the beginning of what we hope will be a lifelong interest in the civic process.”

The event is co-sponsored by the Monte Vista High School Republicans, the UC Berkeley College Republicans, Saint Mary’s College Republicans, the East Bay Young Republicans and the Contra Costa County Republican Party. Though all are welcome, RSVP is required — e-mail to RSVP.

For more information on the California Speaks Out Tour, contact the California Republican Party at 916-448-9496.

Posted on Tuesday, October 11th, 2011
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Weather delays and suspends high school football games

The lightning Friday night led to delays in the games of the three Lamorinda high school football teams and put an end to the Miramonte game.

The weather didn’t stop Campolindo from routing Ygnacio Valley, 49-7, at the Cougars’ home field. The Cougars, who are 2-0, led the game 35-0 at halftime.

The weather delay in the Acalanes game, which lasted an hour, may have helped the Dons, as they were able to come back from a 14-7 deficit heading into the delay to win the game 28-21. The Dons are also 2-0 this season.

Miramonte was leading 21-6 with 2:49 remaining in the second quarter in their game against Kennedy-Richmond. Lightning delayed and eventually suspended the game, as officials deemed it was unsafe. The game will be finished at Miramonte on Monday at 5 :00 p.m. from the spot it stopped.

Posted on Saturday, September 10th, 2011
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A little love for local law enforcement, firefighters

Victor Ivry e-mailed us today to say that Table 24 restaurant in the Theatre Square in Orinda (of which Ivry is co-owner) will show the love to local police and fire departments on Sunday (Sept. 11, of course). Any member of the Orinda, Lafayette or Moraga police or fire departments will be treated to a meal this Sunday to thank them for their service to the community and to honor the memory of those who gave up their lives in the line of duty at the World Trade Centers in New York 10 years ago.
“There are moments in life that have to be remembered and honored,” Ivry said. “When you own a restaurant and have the pleasure of feeding people, you show your appreciation and gratitude through your food.”
Added co-owner Michael Karp, “We hope to see a lot of uniforms in the restaurant on Sunday so we can express our thanks in person.”
The restaurant will be open 9 am – 9 pm Sunday for both brunch and dinner. For working officers and firefighters take out is also available by calling 254-0124.

Posted on Thursday, September 8th, 2011
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CNN visits Lafayette

This segment appeared on CNN this morning highlighting Lafayette, which has the state’s lowest unemployment rate at 4 percent, and Delano, which has the state’s highest at 37 percent. The reporter does mention councilman Don Tatzin, who is retired, has “been out of work for more than three years.” Won’t someone please hire Don Tatzin?

Posted on Thursday, August 11th, 2011
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Saint Mary’s summer teaching seminar this week

It may be real short notice, but Saint Mary’s College offers this seminar for K-12 teachers Thursday at the college. To learn more about it, read here:

Saint Mary’s Summer Institute for teachers Thursday
Contra Costa Times
Posted: 06/22/2011 12:33:45 PM PDT

MORAGA — Saint Mary’s College will hold its second annual Summer Leadership Institute For K-12 Educators Thursday, June 23 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Soda Center on the Moraga college campus.

“Transforming Ourselves & Our Schools: Achieving Results In Difficult Times” is the focus of the academic seminar hosted by the Saint Mary’s Kalmanovitz School of Education. An important aspect will be discussion of how educators can continue to meet the academic needs of California’s K-12 students despite increasing financial restraints.

Discussions will include leaders such as Gordon Jackson, assistant superintendent for California’s Department of Education; motivational speaker Darrell “Coach D” Andrews, author of several books, including “Believing The HYPE-Seven Keys To Motivating Students of Color;” award-winning educator T.C. Roekle, author of “Designing Thriving Schools;” and the recently appointed new Dean of the Kalmanovitz School of Education Phyllis Metcalf-Turner.

The cost is $50 for the general public and $25 for Saint Mary’s students, staff and faculty. The fee includes continental breakfast, lunch and materials. For more information, visit the event website or call 925-631-4700 or contact professors Kathy Perez, 925-631-4506 ( or Rebecca Proehl, 925-631.4994 (

Posted on Wednesday, June 22nd, 2011
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