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Jul 07th
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The Ticker

Blunting Hunger Pangs

Blunting Hunger Pangs

WATSONVILLE > Friday discussion aims to spread awareness of CalFresh eligibility

Santa Cruz County has been taking advantage of more food assistance programs than ever over the last few years, but Second Harvest Food Bank thinks that public awareness of available resources could use a boost.

This Friday, May 11, Second Harvest Food Bank will hold an event highlighting the CalFresh program (formerly known as food stamps and now federally known as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP). According to a Second Harvest press release, CalFresh is being seriously underutilized.

“Currently, less than 50 percent of eligible Californians are benefiting from this valuable program,” says Second Harvest’s Deborah Yashar in the press release.

Food aid programs in Santa Cruz have been seeing spikes in use over the past several years. In 2003, 32,618 people in Santa Cruz County were served by the Second Harvest Food Bank. By 2010, that number had grown to 52,400.

 

Students benefiting from free or reduced cost school meals have also increased in number—while still below the California average, students receiving these benefits went from 36.4 percent of students to 50.9 percent.

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The Ticker

Fatal Stabbing Information Released

Fatal Stabbing Information Released

SANTA CRUZ > Police have released the identity of the local woman who passed away yesterday, Monday, May 7, due to a brutal stabbing attack. The victim was Shannon Collins, the well-known and beloved co-owner of Camouflage in Downtown Santa Cruz.

Collins, who was 38-years-old, was accosted and repeatedly stabbed on the 300 block of Broadway Street around 11:50 a.m. yesterday. She was pronounced dead on the scene. Police say the suspect, 43-year-old transient Charles Anthony Edwards, hails from San Francisco—where they say he has “an extensive violent criminal history”—and had been in Santa Cruz for about a week. He did not know Collins.    

“After interviews with multiple witnesses, and Mr. Edwards, investigators established that the victim did not know Mr. Edwards,” said a Tuesday SCPD press release. “It appears as though this was a senseless, unprovoked and random attack by Mr. Edwards upon an innocent victim. There is no clear motive.”

Edwards was booked at 9 p.m. Monday and remains in police custody. His photo will be released after the police department has finished conducting photo lineups with witnesses, of which they say there were “a high number.”

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The Ticker

Progress for Project Homeless Connect

Progress for Project Homeless Connect

SANTA CRUZ > Data from the third annual event is in

The variety of offerings at the recent Project Homeless Connect (PHC) included everything from reading glasses and dental screenings to one-on-one assistance and ID cards.

The April 17 event was the third annual installment of PHC—a one-stop shop that crops up once a year to provide a wide range services and support for the growing homeless population in Santa Cruz County.

“Homelessness is a really hot topic in Santa Cruz,” says Samantha Green, research analyst for Watsonville-based nonprofit Applied Survey Research, which organizes the event along with the United Way of Santa Cruz County. Together, the organizations gather 45 service agencies and 450 community volunteers for an eight-hour event that Green says has visibly changed lives.  

 “It’s wonderful to see people who were homeless two years ago who have a home now, who have gained weight, who we can see again, and who can see people who they’ve been helped by,” says Green. “It’s really amazing.”

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CultureBeat

Sunni Side Up

Sunni Side Up

How art can change the world: Renowned poet/activist Sunni Patterson speaks out

Celebrated spoken word artist, poet, and activist Sunni Patterson heads to UC Santa Cruz on Sunday, May 6, to take part in the sixth annual Birth of Word Festival, presented by Rainbow Theater. Prior to her visit, GT caught up with Patterson to discuss her craft, the role of an artist in today’s world, the culture of her hometown, New Orleans, and more.

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The Ticker

Remembering Derby Park

Remembering Derby Park

SANTA CRUZ > Facelift of historic skate park draws local nostalgia, ire, and some hasty negotiations by city officials

The face of one of the first public skate parks in the world is being replaced by four inches of rebar and concrete. Derby Skate Park, which was built in the 1970s, is a landmark of skateboarding history stationed on Santa Cruz’s Westside. Recently, Santa Cruz public officials felt that the timeworn curves and slopes of Derby had become too dangerous to allow.

“Derby Skate Park is undergoing a much needed resurfacing,” says Mauro Garcia, parks superintendent of the City of Santa Cruz. But Garcia noted that the community is, to put it mildly, miffed about the repairs.

“When Zack [Wormhoudt] went to the city to fight for his father’s park, the city told him that the bell had been rung,” says local skater Owen Commons. “[City councilmember] Ryan Coonerty wrote to my brother [and told him] that it was a foregone conclusion.”

 Skaters and community members were angry largely due to what they saw as poor communication by the city regarding the impending repairs. The city has changed tack recently, and has moved to work more closely with the local skating community following the rush of public outrage.

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The Ticker

Cowell Lime Works Botanical Tour

Cowell Lime Works Botanical Tour

SLUG REPORT > Botanical tour of historic district to be given by plant experts and historian

Plant experts Angel Guerzon and Suzanne Schettler and historian Frank Perry will be offering a guided botanical tour of the Cowell Lime Works this Saturday, May 5 on the UC Santa Cruz campus. The leisurely one-mile, two-hour walk will be interspersed with snippets of information from resident experts.

“We’ll be examining the district's garden plants and native vegetation, and learning what they tell us about the historical development of the site,” Perry says.

 

According to Perry, the lime works supplied lime for the building of San Francisco on the heels of the Gold Rush. Facts like these will be par for the course, along with others like “How big does a Monterey Cypress grow in 145 years?” (This answer, and others, will be provided on the tour.)

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The Ticker

A Step in Cancer Research

A Step in Cancer Research

SLUG REPORT >  New database built at UCSC allows for massive data storage, allowing for leap in cancer research

A large-scale data repository has just been built at UC Santa Cruz, bringing cancer researchers one step closer to a truly comprehensive biomedical cancer research database.

Funded by the National Cancer Institute, UCSC’s new Cancer Genomics Hub will allow researchers to manage and analyze the large quantities of gathered data necessary for precision treatment of cancer. UCSC bioinformatics expert David Haussler’s team established the hub, which is in an initial “beta” release.

 

“By providing researchers with comprehensive catalogs of the key genomic changes in many types of cancer, these efforts will support the development of more effective ways to diagnose and treat cancer,” Haussler said in a UCSC press release.

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CultureBeat

Around Town Photos

Around Town Photos

A Dance Flash Mob, organized by Zumba instructors Angell Estrada and Jillian Chesley, excited the crowd at the Downtown Farmers Market at 4 p.m. on Wednesday, April 25.

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CultureBeat

Fool’s Gold

Fool’s Gold

Cabrillo College Theatre Arts Department taps zeitgeist with revised opera classic

Though it is tempting to compare the comedy of “The Mikada”—Kathryn Adkins’ lissome, literate, lavishly daffy redesign of W.S. Gilbert and Arthur Sullivan’s “The Mikado”—to that of Stephen Colbert and Jon Stewart, it would be a stretch of both the truth and the production’s very intention to do so.

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The Ticker

Santa Cruz Takes the Veg Pledge

Santa Cruz Takes the Veg Pledge

SANTA CRUZ > County supervisors issue proclamation declaring it 'VegWeek'

The Washington, D.C.-based nonprofit Compassion Over Killing has designated April 23 through 29 as national “VegWeek,” and Santa Cruz County is taking up the cause.

VegWeek is an annual event aimed at raising awareness about the purported benefits of vegetarianism by urging supporters to give up meat for one week. The Santa Cruz County Board of Supervisors showed support for the effort by issuing a proclamation officially declaring this week VegWeek in the county.

 

The proclamation was signed on Thursday, April 19 by Board of Supervisors Chair John Leopold, who caught wind of the VegWeek campaign after speaking with one of his constituents. In the proclamation, Leopold encourages county residents “to participate by choosing vegetarian foods as a way to protect their health, the planet and animals.” The proclamation also acknowledges that a vegetarian diet can decrease the risk of “heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, obesity and various cancers.”

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The Boards Are Back in Town

More than a century after a famed trio of Hawaiian princes first surfed in Santa Cruz, their redwood olo surfboards are returning to the Museum of Art & History

 

We Hold These Truths to Be Self-Evident

Saturday, July 4, is the 239th birthday of the United States, commemorating the signing of the Declaration of Independence (the U.S. astrology chart has Aquarius moon—freedom for its people, by its people). Cancer, a liberating and initiating sign, is the “gate” where Spirit enters matter. Cancer receives and distributes Ray 3 (Divine Intelligence) and Ray 7 (new rules, new rhythms, new free nation under God). Cancer represents an intelligent freethinking humanity that can and must create right economics for the world. This means a policy of sharing, an opportunity for the U.S. when Venus (money, resources, possessions, etc.) retrogrades July and August in Leo (the heart of the matter). The United States has a unique spiritual task for the world: to lead humanity within and toward the light, accomplished by its people who must first awaken to this task, learn discrimination and be directed by the soul to assume the Herculean task of spiritual world leadership. Let us review the first words of our Constitution: “We the People of the United States, in order to form a more perfect Union, establish justice, ensure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity, do ordain and establish this constitution for the United States of America.” Let us form that union together. The following is a review of the spiritual tasks for each sign. Read all the signs. They all apply to everyone.  

 

The New Tech Nexus

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

 

Film, Times & Events: Week of July 3

Santa Cruz area movie theaters >
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Lunch is Packed

Picnic basket lunches from Your Place, plus smoked chili peppers, and new owners at Camellia Tea House

 

What would you like the Supreme Court to rule on next?

Raising the minimum wage so that those that are in poverty now can have a higher standard of life. Greanna Smith, Soquel, Nanny

 

Bruzzone Family Vineyards

Bruzzone Family Vineyards is a small operation run by Berna and John Bruzzone. Starting out a few years ago making only Chardonnay, they eventually planted Pinot Noir on their extensive property and now make this varietal as well.

 

Ty’s Eatery

Pop-up hooks up with Santa Cruz Food Lounge for healthy comfort food