Plus Letters To the Editor
This week marks the 24th anniversary of the Loma Prieta Earthquake. And next year makes it a quarter of a century, which is hard to believe. In the aftermath, as most people already know, locals rallied together and helped breathe new life into Downtown Santa Cruz, which was pummeled. I’ve always found it interesting how strong the community spirit can be, and, certainly back in 1989, it was at an all-time high. From time to time, that unique emotional breath is truly present—particularly this year, when locals came out in support of the families of Santa Cruz police officers Sgt. Loran "Butch" Baker and detective Elizabeth Butler, who were killed in the line of duty; and last year, when Santa Cruz business owner Shannon Collins was murdered. It might be good to keep all this in mind—how strong we actually are as a community—in the coming weeks, especially as we head toward the end of another year, and another opportunity to look ahead and ponder just how we would like to see Santa Cruz County—and its polticos—evolve in 2014.
In In the meantime, in the here and now, it’s time to “glow with the flow,” as it were. If there’s one thing Cruzans seem to really like, it’s a festival worthy of our time. And the Santa Cruz GLOW Festival is certainly worthy of that. GT Staff Writer Joel Hersch illuminates us on GLOW this week—so take note of his feature on the fest, which comes to life once again this week in Downtown Santa Cruz. See you there.
Elsewhere, it’s the final weekend of Open Studios, so feel encouraged to dip into the creative lairs of the many local artists in the county whose work is on display for the annual event.
What’s left? Well, GT continues to evolve and grow. Take note of some festive changes—in print, online and on GTv—in the coming months and help us keep the community voice as strong as ever.
Enjoy the issue.
More soon. (There’s always “more” ...)
Greg Archer | Editor-in-Chief
Syria and Other Madness
Thanks for the story on the Syrian woman trying to find refuge (GT 10/3). Not sure how much more of this madness any of us can take. The U.S. should stay out of it, and, really, tend to the messes they have made here—the governement shutdown and all that. Talk about a tragedy.
Jack Davidson | Soquel
That Safeway Dilemma
The proposed new Aptos Safeway mega-store changes [and] degrades the character of the entire Aptos community. The proposed project doubles the store’s size—to two stories high, more than 60,000 square feet (to sell new clothing lines) and a large rooftop parking lot marking a 45-foot high behemoth as seen from Soquel Drive and the Hwy 1 scenic corridor. And it’s more than doubling the gas station to 18 pumps (traffic is already a mess with cars piling up to get into the current eight-pump version). The proposed new traffic light on Soquel Drive will put six traffic lights between Trout Gulch Road and State Park Drive.
This chokes downtown Aptos unmercifully and dramatically changes the character of our small unincorporated village into an ugly Capitola-style center.
Not only will most of the current small businesses be driven out as bulldozers raze the whole Rancho [Del Mar] Shopping Center, but their replacements are sure to be mostly national chains.
Save Aptos—Save Small Locally Owned Businesses. Stop the Safeway mega-store from destroying our cherished character. Giant mega-corporations (like Wal-Mart) try to do such things to small communities and generally get away with it because counties want bigger tax bases and approve them.
Safeway did not meet with community leaders to get input into the impact such a dramatic development would bring, but cynically just laid out its plans to the Aptos community at large in a series of open meetings where the vast majority opposed its plans, to no avail.
One could say that since Safeway Corporate owns the Rancho Del Mar Shopping Center, it can do as it pleases as long as it gets approval from the county Planning Commission. Please join me in saying “no you can’t” destroy a community's character just to satisfy corporate stockholders waiting for better returns on their investment.
Sign the petition at change.org. Search for "Santa Cruz Supervisors" and click on "Reject Aptos Safeway Mega-Expansion." Let the supes know just how you feel.
Alan Saxon | Aptos
On ‘Gravity’ ...
Let it be entered into the permanent record, as Lisa Jensen mentioned elsewhere, this is her first four-star movie in two years. And she saw it in 2D. Friends, I am here to testify: I saw this thing at an IMAX theater in 3D and people seated next to me were honestly concerned for my well-being. I have never seen a movie with more believable tension, and the long, long shots in apparent zero gravity were as technically astonishing as they were prone to causing mild motion sickness (but only in the first few minutes of the film, just as Sandra Bullock's character was experiencing).
On 'The Napolitano Complex' ...
Highly thought out, well researched, and well said. This article lays out real scenarios, cuts through irrelevant claims and makes points that are strong on both sides. It's the best gosh darn thing written on Napolitano to date.
President, UC Merced
Teens Tackle Homelessness
After reading Todd Strasser’s novel “Can’t Get There From Here”—which tells the story of a surrogate family of homeless teens living on the streets of New York—Harbor High School 10th grader Molly Schrank was inspired to adapt it for the stage. After getting permission from Strasser, Schrank wrote the script, recruited local teens, and enlisted the support of the theater community. After a year of hard work, the play makes its debut Oct. 19-20 at Louden Nelson Community Center, with proceeds benefitting the Rebele Family Shelter. Visit cantgettherefromheresantacruz.eventbrite.com.
“Be miserable. Or motivate yourself. Whatever has to be done, it's always your choice.”
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