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Apr 19th
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Mind & Body

The Down Low on Dozing

The Down Low on Dozing

It's National Sleep Awareness Week—ready to improve your sleep habits? 

Do you have difficulty catching some shuteye? If so, you’re not alone. According to the National Institutes of Health, 60 million Americans suffer from sleep disturbances every year. In light of National Sleep Awareness Week, which kicked off on Monday, March 5, we’ve taken the opportunity to look into the most common sleep disorders and unearth some tips for improving bedtime habits.

“There are simple ways to get a restful night’s sleep,” says Nora Distefano, physician and patient services representative at Central Coast Sleep Disorders Center. “Avoid any stimulant, like caffeine, before bedtime. Take a hot bath or shower to promote relaxation. If you’re having trouble sleeping in your bed, get out of bed and into another room.”

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Staycation

Sampling Sacramento

Sampling Sacramento

The state capital turns a skeptic into a satisfied visitor

The Citizen Hotel in Downtown Sacramento is an oasis of charm and style in an otherwise shabby neighborhood. The park directly across the street is, apparently, the most popular place for homeless to sleep, and an entire block to one side of the hotel is boarded up and vacant. Aided by the fact that I visited on a weekend, when the masses of legislators and their staffs are gone, the empty storefronts and sparsely populated streets gave off an eerie, downtrodden vibe.

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The Ticker

Water Talks

Water Talks

SANTA CRUZ > City council approves UCSC water expansion policy

On Tuesday, Feb. 28, the Santa Cruz City Council unanimously passed a water expansion measure for UC Santa Cruz that would enable the university to not have to pay for water conservation measures that would offset water growth demand until they reach a baseline of 206 million gallons a year. This baseline number is based off of the water demand from 1997.

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The Ticker

Spreading the Medicine

While billions of dollars worth of medicine and supplies go unused each year, more Americans are going without prescription drugs because of costs. Sen. Joe Simitian, whose district includes Santa Cruz, recently unveiled a new piece of legislation that would make it easier for surplus prescription drugs and supplies to be redistributed in California. “Instead of throwing out perfectly good medicine, or worse, dumping it into our water supply, this bill will allow us to get it into the hands of people who need it the most,” Simitian said in a Feb. 24 press release. The bill, Senate Bill 1329, expands upon Senate Bill 798, which was also authored by Simitian and which passed in 2005, allowing counties to spearhead redistribution efforts. “At a time when the state and counties are strapped, and many Californians are struggling, this gets drugs that would otherwise be wasted to the people who really need them,” Simitian said. “It’s a clear win-win.” 

CultureBeat

Art for a Cause

Art for a Cause

Varied collective of local artists come together in “Aurora’s Kiss”

A diverse cast of local artists will showcase their respective talents this Saturday night in “Aurora’s Kiss,” a multi-media theatrical production whose proceeds will benefit charitable programs in the area.

The fundraising event will take place at the recently renovated Ristorante Barolo in Aptos, and is billed as an intimate carnival-esque cabaret that will fuse theater, bluegrass, jazz, spoken word, live art, burlesque, bellydance, and a female-driven DJ lineup.

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The Ticker

One Day and Every Day

One Day and Every Day

SANTA CRUZ > Silent auction fundraiser kicks off Project Homeless Connect

“I am not a miracle—I am a product of people’s generosity,” Stephen Nelson told a crowd of about 60 people at the Santa Cruz Museum of Art and History on Thursday, Feb 23.

Nelson, who once homeless and struggled with addiction, came to Santa Cruz almost eight years ago, and today he works with the Homeless Service Center to provide services to people who now face the difficulties he once struggled with.  Nelson spoke to the crowd as part of a charity fundraiser benefitting Project Homeless Connect, a one-day event that aims to provide necessary services to Santa Cruz’s homeless population.

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The Ticker

On the Road

On the Road

APTOS > Afghan orphans stop in Aptos on a nation-wide road trip

Six Afghan orphans, aged 11 to 17, spent a night in Aptos on Thursday, Feb. 23. Their visit was one of many stops on a road trip across the United States sponsored by their orphanage in Kabul. They left for San Francisco today, Friday, Feb. 24, to see the Golden Gate Bridge.

The six kids and their two adult teachers, Nasrin Sultani, an Afghan national, and American Ian Pounds, have been on the road in a 32-foot RV since Jan. 7, starting out in Boston and taking the southern route through New Orleans, Texas and Arizona.  

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CultureBeat

Squeaky Clean Santa Cruz

Squeaky Clean Santa Cruz

SANTA CRUZ > Local cleaning service and resident featured on 'Hoarders'

When the phone rang at Sunrise Cleaning Service on Market Street, owner Tracy Taylor thought it was just another prospective client. But the longtime Santa Cruz resident was in for a surprise: the woman on the other end of the phone worked for the cable network A&E, and she wanted to enlist Taylor’s help for an upcoming episode of the popular television series “Hoarders.”

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Mind & Body

Aptos Village Skin and Body Care

Aptos Village Skin and Body Care

Variety of services and professional etiquette help make this place a haven

We lead busy lives. And while we might already know that it’s best to find the right balance between work and play, we often overlook another important aspect to creating harmony between the mind and body: nurturing. As in, taking care of your skin and body in ways that go beyond basic maintenance. I’m talking about really taking care of yourself.

That’s where Patty Yarr comes in. As a licensed esthetician for 22 years, Yarr has absorbed a great deal of knowledge about skin and body health. During the last 10 years, she’s been at the helm of Aptos Village Skin and Body Care, a unique sanctuary nestled in the most picturesque part of Aptos. Many things shine here but mostly, it’s Yarr’s commitment to great customer care and offering an impressive line of skin care products—it’s one of the reasons she hit our radar in our annual health issue. (See GT’s 2/23 cover story.)

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CultureBeat

Unspoken Truths

Unspoken Truths

UCSC’s African-American Theater Arts Troupe presents meaty play about women in the war-torn Congo

In the 2009 Pulitzer Prize-winning play “Ruined,” by Lynn Nottage, Mama Nadi runs a whorehouse deep in the heart of a modern day, civil war-torn Congo. There, young women depend on Mama Nadi for more than just a job—in the fractured country where gunfire rattles the air and rape is common practice, Mama represents a chance for survival.

The story—reproduced Feb. 24-26 by the UC Santa Cruz African-American Theater Arts Troupe at Second Stage Theater—is a frank and frightening, but ultimately hopeful, portrayal of the gut-wrenching atrocities occurring in the Congo, and the incredible resilience of the women who endure it.

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Cardinal Grand Cross in the Sky

Following Holy Week (passion, death and burial of the Pisces World Teacher) and Easter Sunday (Resurrection Festival), from April 19 to the 23, the long-awaited and discussed Cardinal Cross of Change appears in the sky, composed of Cardinal signs Aries, Libra, Cancer, and Capricorn, with planets (13-14 degrees) Uranus (in Aries), Jupiter (in Cancer), Mars (in Libra) and Pluto (in Capricorn), an actual geometrical square or cross configuration. Cardinal signs mark the seasons of change, initiating new realities.

 

Sugar: The New Tobacco?

Proposed bill would require warning labels on sugary drinks Will soda and other saccharine libations soon come with a health warning? They will if it’s up to our state senator, Bill Monning (D-Carmel). On Feb. 27, Monning proposed first-of-its-kind legislation that would require a consumer warning label be placed on sugar-sweetened beverages sold in California. SB 1000, also known as the Sugar-Sweetened Beverages Safety Warning Act, was proposed to provide vital information to consumers about the harmful effects of consuming sugary drinks, such as sodas, sports drinks, energy drinks, and sweetened teas.

 

Film, Times & Events: Week of April 17

Santa Cruz area movie theaters >

 

Growing Hope

Campos Seguros combats sexual assault in the Watsonville farmworker community Farm work was a way of life for Rocio Camargo, who grew up in Watsonville as the daughter of Mexican immigrants. Her parents met while working the fields 30 years ago, and her father went on to run Fuentes Berry Farms.
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Foodie File: Red Apple Cafe

Breakfast takes center stage at Gracia Krakauer's Red Apple Cafe Before they moved to Aptos, Gracia and her husband Dan Krakauer would visit friends in Santa Cruz County and eat at the Red Apple Café all the time. Then they moved up here from Santa Monica five years ago, and bought the Aptos location (there’s a separate one in Watsonville) from the family who owned it for two decades.

 

How would you feel about a tech industry boom in Santa Cruz?

I feel like it would ruin the small old-town feeling of Santa Cruz. It wouldn’t be the same Surf City kind of vacation town that it is. Antoinette BennettSanta Cruz | Construction Management

 

Trout Gulch Vineyards

Cinsault 2012—la grande plage diurne The most popular wines on store shelves are those most generally known and available—Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, which are all superb for sure. But when you come across a more unusual varietal, like Trout Gulch Vineyards’ Cinsault ($18), it opens up a whole new world.

 

Waddell Creek, Al Fresco

Route One Summer Farm Dinner You’ve been buying their insanely fresh produce for years now at farmers’ markets. Right? So now why not become more familiar with the gorgeous Waddell Creek farmlands of Route One Farms?