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It’s the annual herring run in Point Richmond

If you haven’t been to Miller/Knox Regional Shoreline in Point Richmond lately, word is obviously out among the sea gulls that this is the place to be.
The annual herring run is an event not to be missed, but so far this year the buzz (or squawk) is not as great as last year.
A few seal lions were around Saturday and the pelicans came out at sunset, but right now it’s the sea gulls’ show and all we can do is think of Hitchcock.

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West Contra Costa Science Fair award winners

The 55th annual West Contra Costa Science Fair awards ceremony was held Feb. 9 at Contra Costa College in San Pablo.
Of the 186 entrants, 65 middle school and 16 high school students won a total of 88 awards.
The eight West Contra Costa Unified schools participating in the fair were Juan Crespi, Lavonya Dejean, Helms, and Portola Middle Schools, Elizabeth Stewart and Mira Vista K-8 Schools, as well as El Cerrito and Pinole Valley High Schools. There were about 50 judges participating from the Alameda County CA Superior Court, Bayer Pharmaceuticals, Bio-Rad Laboratories, Chevron Corporation, Chevron Oronite, Cisco, Contra Costa College, CSU Northridge, Northwestern University, Synopsys Outreach Foundation, UC Berkeley, UC Extension, USDA Western Regional Research Center, and the West Contra Costa Unified School District. The judges evaluated the projects in the categories of Behavioral, Biological, and Physical Sciences for seventh through twelfth grades.
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Kensington Circus Pub changing hands — end of an era at Colusa Circle?

For more than two decades, the Kensington Circus Pub has been an anchor at Colusa Circle at the “Four Corners” area of Albany, Berkeley, El Cerrito and Kensington.
It’s a favorite for its fish and chips, musical appearances and, — most of all — the fact that you can set your toddler down and enjoy a brew.
We were saddened to see this post on pub’s Facebook fan page late this afternoon:

The Kensington Circus Pub (SF Bay Area, CA)
Yes, folks, it’s official — Graham is indeed selling the pub, which is in escrow now. Although we’d like to hope that the new owner will carry on some of the old traditions, please do stop by some Friday or Saturday soon to wish Graham well (he’s heading back to England) or on any other day of the week to wish James, Winnie, and the rest of us good luck in our upcoming job hunts. We love you guys! It’s been an honor and a pleasure to serve you for the past 25 years, and we will greatly miss seeing you all on a regular basis. Best wishes from all of us!

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El Cerrito (video): Chris Strachwitz and Grammy Award-winner Adam Machado at Down Home Music, December 2010

Here is our video from December 2010 of Arhoolie Records founder Chris Strachwtiz and Grammy Award-winner-to-be Adam Machado at a book release party for the anniversary compilation “Hear Me Howling! Blues, Ballads & Beyond: The Arhoolie 50th Anniversary Box Set” at Down Home Music in El Cerrito in December 2010.
Strachwitz tells how his decision to record a song played by some Berkeley hippies led by Berkeley’s Country Joe McDonald before an anti-war rally in 1965 resulted in the royalties that allowed him to buy the Arhoolie/Down Home building.
So why has it taken more than a year for us to post it? Well, um, obviously because we knew Machado was going to win a Grammy Award for authoring great liner notes for “Hear Me Howling!”
(We also wish we’d had a tripod.)

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El Cerrito police dog dies

Photo by John Stashik of El Cerrito K9 officer King, taken at his swearing in ceremony on Dec. 6, 2010. The police dog, the city's first and a favorite in the department and the community, died Friday.

The El Cerrito Police Department issued this announcement late Saturday afternoon:

Death of Police K-9 King

It is with great sadness that we announce the death of El Cerrito Police K-9 King.

On February 10, 2012 while off-duty, El Cerrito Police K-9 King began showing signs of physical distress. His partner, Officer Joshua Del Prado, took King to the Veterinarian where emergency surgery was performed in an effort to identify the source of King’s illness, and to find a remedy.

Once surgery was performed, it became clear that King had suffered a catastrophic and unavoidable internal malady for which medical care could not repair.

King’s condition was not survivable. With his partner and other members of the El Cerrito Police Department by his side, King died.

Hired in late 2010, King was the first Police K-9 in service in the El Cerrito Police Department. He was purchased after the community and the El Cerrito Police Employees Association raised funds to start the K-9 program; one where interaction with the community was as important as apprehending offenders.

King participated in local safety fairs, and community events. Two of the notable calls where King was the key participant include finding an elderly Alzheimer’s patient who had wandered away from his home and had become lost; it was King who tracked and located the man. King also apprehended a suspect after a vehicle and foot pursuit where it was clear that the suspect had no concern for public safety as evidenced by his flight and hiding from officers. King, instead of a police officer, put himself in harm’s way to remove the man from beneath the vehicle.

No memorial events are planned at this time. We welcome any condolences from our community at the front counter of the Public Safety Building located at 10900 San Pablo Ave. El Cerrito.