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Headline: WWII wedding dresses displayed at library
Story and photos by Alissa Reyes

Every bride’s wedding dress is special in its own way, but the wedding dresses that were on display at Central Park Library are actual pieces of history. On Wednesday, the Santa Clara County Historical and Genealogical Society invited the World War II War Brides Association to display WWII wedding dresses.

A war bride is a woman from another country that married an U.S. solider who was serving in the woman’s country. These young women then left their countries, sometimes with babies in tow, and traveled to America to reunite with their husbands.

The dresses on display were worn by the war brides when they married American soldiers in their own countries. Beverly Sollars, the Wedding Dress Display Chair for the Association and retired nurse, was the keynote speaker for the event. Her Australian mother is a WWII war bride and her wedding dress was on display.

All the dresses were white with only some showing signs of yellowing and aging. The dresses were given to Sollars to store and care for. She takes immaculate care of them. When she receives them, she carefully washes them with Ivory soap in her own bathtub. Once clean, she stores them in breathable, cotton-based garment bags recommended by Smithsonian Museum...

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Gillmor and Nikolai Clarify Allegations

Mayor Lisa Gillmor and candidate for Police Chief Patrick Nikolai requested corrections to our Sept. 7 description of allegations they have made as 'falsifying time cards.'

In an email, Gillmor clarified: "Being directed not to report hours worked at Levi's Stadium and falsifying time cards are two separate things. There is no issue from the time cards or the hours worked. The only issue is which pot of money reimburses the officers for their work."

Nickolai explained in a second email, "I have stated that other Officers have come to me with concerns about possible Measure J violations.  However, I have never described what those concerns were, as I am prohibited by Santa Clara PD Operations Orders."

Neither Mayor Gillmor or Patrick Nikolai used the words “falsifying time cards.”

An Evening with Burning Tale Poetry, Santa Clara Tales, Cemeteries, Local Art and Stories
By Daniel Talamantes

An Evening with Burning Tale Poetry, Santa Clara Tales, Cemeteries, Local Art and Stories

Adjacent to Santa Clara Mission Cemetery is an eclectic art studio called Studio Bongiorno.

Once The California Monument Company, the gallery is owned by local Santa Clara artist, Phil Bongiorno,who has transformed the space into a unique and surreal hub for both the local and traveling artist community...

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City Observer: Sept. 14, 2016
By Carolyn Schuk

Santa Clara City Observer

Santa Clara 11th Safest City in U.S.

Despite the impression created by big news stories and some reality TV shows, crime levels have been steadily dropping over the past twenty years. Santa Clara ranks as the 11th safest city in the U.S., according to the latest report by municipal data collection and analysis company Niche (niche.com). California is also among the safest states in the U.S. with eleven of its cities among the top 25 safest cities nationally,

Niche factors in its analysis both violent crime – such as murder, assault, rape and robbery – and property crime – such as burglary, larceny, and car theft. Per 100,000 people, Santa Clara's annual violent crime amounts to 134 instances and property crimes to 2,708...

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Lawn Party Raises funds for PACE’s autistic programs
Story and photos by: Alissa Reyes

Lawn Party Raises funds for PACE’s autistic programs

The Pacific Autism Center for Education (PACE) held a Lawn Party fundraiser for the community on a sunny Sunday afternoon outside of the Triton Museum of Art.

“The funds raised go towards children and adults with autism,” said Karen Kennan, assistant executive director for PACE.

This was the first time PACE held the event. The funds raised from the event will support PACE’s programs and services that help those with autism. Many of those in attendance were parents and family members of those impacted by autism. However, some supporters aren’t affected by autism at all and just wanted to help out.

PACE runs two children and four adult group homes in Santa Clara County, the PACE School in Santa Clara and the Sunny Days preschool in San Jose. According to Kennan, these locations always need new supplies and even furniture due to wear and tear...

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Getting to know the Santa Clara City Council candidates
The Santa Clara Weekly is running a series of profiles on political candidates in the November election -- this article focuses on city council seat six Suds Jain.
By David Alexander

Getting to know the Santa Clara City Council candidates

Suds Jain wants to represent you on the Santa Clara City Council.

Jain is in his first term on the Santa Clara Planning Commission, which expires in June 2019. He sought the appointment to the council back in March when Lisa Gillmor filled the mayor’s seat, an appointment the council ended up giving to his opponent Kathy Watanabe. He holds a Master’s degree in electrical engineering from Massachusetts Institute of Technology...

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This Week's Letter

Your City Observer on Aug 31 belittled neighbor's concerns about 410 Lafayette Way. The City Code includes a clear, non-discriminatory prohibition of boarding houses in R1 neighborhoods which should protect homeowners from encroachment by developments that would reduce house values and quality of life. There is no mention of students in the ordinance. The city staff chooses not to enforce this ordinance and neither they nor any city council in the last 60 years has acted on any alternative that they would be willing to enforce. Once established the city does nothing about boarding houses. Thus, the only non-litigious recourse for homeowners to protect their property is to bring such anticipated cases before the city council. Once again, Councilmember O’Neill and others have voted to protect the rights of non-resident developers to violate our city ordinance at the expense of resident's rights to protection under the ordinance.

Hudson Washburn

Getting to know the Santa Clara City Council candidates
The Santa Clara Weekly is running a series of profiles on political candidates in the November election -- this article focuses on city council seat seven incumbent Teresa O'Neill.
By David Alexander

Getting to know the Santa Clara City Council candidates

Teresa O’Neill wants to represent you on the Santa Clara City Council.

O’Neill is seeking re-election after winning her race in 2012. She is a Stanford graduate who worked for the Hewlett-Packard Company. She served two terms on the Santa Clara Unified school board, the planning commission as well as the city’s general plan steering committee.

“I believe I have made a combination of having had a lot of experience, yet I feel like I have worked hard to be accessible,” she said. “I have a broad perspective on the issues in the community.”

If elected to a second term, O’Neill said she would like to improve how government works, preserve city’s environment and ensure the city has “financial stability.” She said she has “worked hard to educate [herself] on the issues,” which has “built a strong bond” with the community.

While on the council, O’Neill said she has worked hard to keep her finger on the pulse of the community. A good public official has to be open to differing ideas, she added...

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Silicon Valley Power Recognized for its Santa Clara Green Power Program
Story by Cynthia Cheng and Photos by Silicon Valley Power

Silicon Valley Power Recognized for its Santa Clara Green Power Program

When subscribers to Santa Clara Green Power turn on their light switch, television, microwave or laptop, their electricity comes from the wind and sun,  outdoor elements which happen to be sources of renewable energy. Back in May, Silicon Valley Power’s Santa Clara Green Power program was recognized again by the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) as one of the Top 10 green power programs in America.

“Since the inception of Santa Clara Green Power 10 years ago, we have made the National Renewable Energy Laboratory’s Top 10 list for 10 years in a row,” says Larry Owens, Silicon Valley Power’s manager of customer services.

The NREL noted the following details about Silicon Valley Power specific to 2015:  8 percent of Silicon Valley Power customers have participated in Santa Clara Green Power. Silicon Valley Power delivered over 40 percent of its power from carbon-free sources. Silicon Valley Power sold 179,621 megawatt hours of electricity, putting the city department on par with the nation’s largest electric utilities...

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Washington Open Elementary School Remembers 9/11 at Flag Ceremony
By Cynthia Cheng

Washington Open Elementary School Remembers 9/11 at Flag Ceremony

On Monday, Sept. 12, students at Washington Open Elementary School came to school dressed in red, white and blue. It was the day after Sept. 11 and 15 years after America was attacked by al-Qaeda, a terrorist group. Early in the morning, teachers brought their students outside to the school’s flag pole. Fifth grade student Ioan Har facilitated the raising of the United States and California flags among his fellow Cub Scouts in Pack 32 and the Girl Scout Brownies in Troop 61378. Har also led the school community in reciting the Pledge of Allegiance. Remembering 9/11 with a flag raising ceremony will be a new tradition at this school.

“It’s important for everybody to remember 9/11,” says Barbara Berman, principal of Washington Open Elementary School. “People have different philosophies about the American flag and I think it’s important for people to remember that for whatever country you are in, you need to honor that country’s flag. [At the flag ceremony], we’re not going to talk so much about the history of 9/11 as it’s up to the parents to talk to their children about it. In the upper grades, the teachers might talk about it but not in kindergarten or first grade...”

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