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May 06th
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Literature

A&E - Literature

Boardwalk Odyssey

Boardwalk Odyssey

Editor’s note: Stephen Kessler is the author, most recently of “Scratch Pegasus” (poems, Swan Scythe Press) and “Poems of Consummation” by Vicente Aleixandre (translation, Black Widow Press). He lives in Santa Cruz and is the editor of “The Redwood Coast Review.” "Boardwalk Odyssey" is from a work in progress.

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A&E - Literature

Owning up to History

Owning up to History

Novelist weaves local history and fiction as a vehicle for finding truth in ‘The Curse of Santa Cruz’

Stephanie Michel's new novel opens with a character encountering thousands of frenzied birds descending upon Santa Cruz—a depiction of an actual event which took place in 1961. The Santa Cruz Sentinel reported on the occurrence, which later became the basis for Alfred Hitchcock's 1963 horror film, The Birds. That grizzly scene serves as the precursor to many historic events woven into Michel’s novel, “The Curse of Santa Cruz.”

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A&E - Literature

In Their Shoes

In Their Shoes

Local author Wei Wei releases new memoir, ‘Tracing Our Footsteps: Fifteen Tales of Hope, Struggle, and Triumph’

Wei Wei emigrated from China to the United States more than 30 years ago as an international student. Now she is a Fellow of the Special Libraries Association and the former Engineering Librarian at UC Santa Cruz, but she admits that, due to cultural differences, it took her almost 30 years to feel like the U.S., and particularly the West Coast, was home.

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A&E - Literature

Sky-high Ambition

Sky-high Ambition

Ben Lomond author gives prolific inventor, John J. Montgomery, the long-overdue credit he deserves

Few Santa Cruzans know that some of the breakthrough experiments in aviation history occurred right in their own backyard. When humankind began to believe in the seemingly impossible notion of controlled flight in the early 1900s, the Wright brothers held the spotlight for their powered aerial flights in Kitty Hawk, N.C. Meanwhile, another man’s breakthrough inventions took to the skies above Aptos.

“Aptos was the Kitty Hawk of the West,” says Craig Harwood. The Ben Lomond resident recently co-authored the book “Quest for Flight,” which tells the tale of a prolific inventor named John J. Montgomery, whose breakthroughs in human-controlled air flight—many of which took place in the Santa Cruz region—fueled the legacy of American aviation. “It was this significant transition from idea and model to being fully demonstrated in a controlled flight hundreds of feet above the earth,” he explains.

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A&E - Literature

The Power of Conversation

The Power of Conversation

Local author Cecile Andrews emphasizes importance of community engagement in newest book

Cecile Andrews, author of the new book “Living Room Revolution: A Handbook for Conversation, Community and the Common Good,” probably wouldn’t get along too well with Larry David’s character from HBO’s Curb Your Enthusiasm, known for hiding his face and avoiding communication with anyone he runs into on the street. Andrews is a longstanding part-time Santa Cruz (part-time Seattle) resident who says something that’s struck her about this town over the years is people's willingness to participate in a practice she’s dubbed the “Stop and Chat”—which is exactly what it sounds like.

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Mountain Mystic

When Cora Evans died in Boulder Creek in 1957, her thousands of pages of religious writings hadn’t yet been published. More than a half a century later, Evans’ fiery visions and spiritual devotion have inspired a crusade within Catholicism to make her the Santa Cruz Mountains’ first saint

 

Wesak (Water) Taurus Solar Festival, Buddha Blesses the Earth

A most important celebration occurs Sunday, May 3—the Wesak Taurus Buddha Solar Festival/full moon. At the moment of the full moon the Buddha’s presence enters the Earth plane for eight minutes. He brings the Will-to-Good from the Father, which, when reaching humanity becomes goodwill (Mother Principle). Held yearly in a valley hidden deep within the Himalayas, the Wesak festival is prepared for for months in advance (beginning at Winter Solstice). On festival day, amidst pilgrims, disciples and Holy Ones gathered in the valley, the Buddha is invoked through movement, symbols and mantrams. At the moment of the full moon, hearing the words, “We are ready, Buddha, come,” the Lord of Illumination (brother of the Christ) appears in the clouds above the altar to emanate forth the will and purpose of God to earth. The blessing of the father is then held in safekeeping for distribution at the June full moon Goodwill Festival. The day of Wesak (May 3, 8:42 p.m. West Coast) all disciples (east and west) place crystal vessels filled with pure water outside (in gardens, on rooftops, porches and steps) under the heavens. As the Buddha blesses the world, all waters, including waters within our bodies, are blessed. The Buddha is accompanied by the Forces of Enlightenment to illuminate humanity’s minds. Humanity then begins to express new constructive, productive and beneficial ways of the Art of Livingness. Wesak covers five days—two days (before) of dedicated preparation, the actual festival “Day of Safeguarding,” and two days (after) distributing goodwill (the NGWS to humanity). Join us in the Valley by reciting the Great Invocation, mantra of direction for humanity.

 

The New Tech Nexus

Community leaders in science and technology unite to form web-based networking program

 

Film, Times & Events: Week of May 1

Santa Cruz area movie theaters >
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Latest Comments

 

Hole in the Wall

Popular Aptos spot opens for dinner

 

How do you connect with the natural world?

My connection to the natural world is through my art. I totally feel it there very physically in nature and even right here on the street. Jonathan Rosen, Felton, Pastor

 

Hess Collection Winery

My friend Emma from London came to visit for a few days in early March, so I took her wine tasting in the Santa Cruz Mountains—a rare treat for her, as there aren’t too many vineyards in the middle of London. Her visit reminded me how fortunate we are to live in this paradise of ultra-fresh produce, with grapes growing in wild profusion.

 

Springtime Walkabout

May Day Flower Festival, free tours of the UCSC Farm, and a nondairy chocolate indulgence