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Facebook expands harassment policy to protect public figures
By David Klepper
Associated Press

Facebook will expand its policies on harassment to remove more harmful content, the company said on Oct. 13 in its latest change following congressional testimony from a whistleblower who faulted the social media giant for not doing enough to stop harmful content.

Under the new, more detailed harassment policy, Facebook will bar content that degrades or sexualizes public figures, including celebrities, elected officials and others in the public eye. Existing policies already prohibit similar content about private individuals.

Another change will add more protections from harassment to government dissidents, journalists and human rights activists around the world. In many nations, social media harassment has been used in efforts to silence journalists and activists.

Lastly, the company based in Menlo Park, California, announced it will ban all coordinated harassment, in which a group of individuals work together to bully another user. That change will apply to all users. “We do not allow bullying and harassment on our platform, but when it does happen, we act,” Antigone Davis, Facebook's head of global safety, wrote in a blog post.

The changes come amid mounting criticism of the company's handling of hate speech, misinformation and negative content. Concerns about harassment range from teenagers bullying each other on Instagram to the coordinated abuse of journalists and dissidents by groups linked to authoritarian governments.

In early October, former Facebook data scientist Frances Haugen told Congress that the company has done too little to address its responsibility for spreading harmful content, and too often chooses profit over its users' best interests. Days later, the company announced that it would introduce new features designed to protect kids, including one encouraging them to take a break from the platform.

Celebrities, even those who profit handsomely off Facebook and Instagram, haven't been shy about criticizing the company. In an interview earlier this year with The Associated Press, singer and actress Selena Gomez said she began pressing tech companies like Facebook to clean up their sites in 2017 after a 12-year-old commented on one of Gomez's Instagram posts: “Go kill yourself.”

“That was my tipping point,” Gomez said. “I couldn't handle what I was seeing.”

— Amanda Seitz in Columbus, Ohio, contributed to this report.

Park It
By Ned MacKay

As autumn sets in, lots of enjoyable seasonal programs are scheduled at Ardenwood Historic Farm in Fremont, East Bay Regional Park District’s window on 19th century rural life.

Ardenwood is a stopover for many fall migratory birds. Naturalist Christina Garcia will lead a bird-watching safari through Ardenwood’s gardens, woods and fields from 8:00 to 9:30 a.m. on Saturday, October 23. For this program, admission to Ardenwood is free of charge, and no registration is required.

Ardenwood’s centerpiece is the Patterson House Museum a restored Queen Anne Victorian farmhouse once home to the estate’s owner, George Patterson, and his family.

Free tours of Patterson House are offered between 11:30 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays, including October 23 and 24, led by docents in 19th century clothing. Ardenwood’s admission fee applies. Reservations aren’t necessary, but check for tour availability at the train station when you enter the park.

Farmers used stilts for some of their chores. You can try walking with stilts yourself during a free program at Ardenwood from noon to 1 p.m. on Saturday, October 23. Again, Ardenwood’s admission fee applies, though parking is free.

Ardenwood is located at 34600 Ardenwood Boulevard, just north of Highway 84. Besides these programs, Ardenwood schedules lots of others that illustrate life on a 19th century farming estate. For information on programs and entrance fees, call
(510) 544-2797.

“Discovery on Demand” is the theme of a free program from 10:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. on both Saturday and Sunday, October 23 and 24, at the visitor center in Coyote Hills Regional Park in Fremont.

Drop in any time during those hours to join in hands-on activities, nature investigations and crafts. Watch a live animal feeding; learn about wildlife habitats and how to protect them. All ages are welcome. Because of COVID-19 restrictions, masks are required and social distancing is obligatory. All ages are welcome. Parents must accompany children.

Coyote Hills’ visitor center is at the end of Patterson Ranch Road off Paseo Padre Parkway. There’s a parking fee of $5 per vehicle. For information, call (510) 544-3220.

A moderate, naturalist-led Saturday stroll through redwoods, chaparral and oak is on the calendar from 10 a.m. to noon on October 23 at Roberts Regional Recreation Area on Skyline Boulevard in Oakland. Meet at the Redwood Bowl.

The hike is free of charge, and registration is not necessary. For information and directions, call (510) 544-3187.

One of a monthly series of nature journaling workshops will be from 11 a.m. to noon on Saturday, October 23 at Sunol Regional Wilderness in southern Alameda County with naturalist Erica Stephens.

A staff member from the park district’s land stewardship department will bring nets and materials to help with an exploration of Alameda Creek. Recommended items for participants include a backpack or bag with the journal, field watercolors or other color medium, folding chair, closed-toe shoes, hat and sunscreen, water and binoculars.

Anyone wishing to enter the creek will have to go through decontamination and cleaning to prevent the spread of aquatic pathogens, and COVID safety measures will be required. The workshop is free of charge and registration is not required. For information, call (510) 544-3249.

Sunol Wilderness is at the end of Geary Road off Calaveras Road about five miles south of I-680 and the town of Sunol. There’s a parking fee of $5 per vehicle. For the workshop, meet at the visitor center.

These are just a few of the activities planned in coming days in the regional parks. For the full calendar, visit www.ebparks.org and click on “Activities.”

By John Grimaldi and David Bruce Smith
October 13 through 25

Hard fought independence
In 1777, America’s Continental Army proved its prowess in the Battle of Saratoga; for the first time, it garnered official recognition as an independent nation. When word got to King Louis XVI of France, he was – suddenly — convinced that the colonials were not just the ragtime revolutionaries he had imagined. They were fierce and formidable.

That summer, British General John Burgoyne marched his 8,000 hardened troops, and joined up with British General Sir William Howe’s throng. They lost the first Battle of Saratoga on September 19 to an army of fresh but determined men under the command of American General Horatio Gates; Benedict Arnold captured victory with his forces in the Second Battle of Saratoga on October 7. Three years later, Arnold committed treason when he offered to turn West Point over to the British in exchange for money and a high-ranking position in the British army.

According to History.com: “By October 13, 20,000 Americans had surrounded the British, and four days later [on October 17] Burgoyne was forced to agree to the first large-scale surrender of British forces in the Revolutionary War.”

For more information, the Grateful American Book Prize recommends “The Ghosts of Saratoga” by David R. Ossont.

Cuban missile crisis
On October 22, 1962, America was positioned to engage in a Third World War with the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics [USSR]. American intelligence had observed the Soviets supplying Cuba with weaponry; because the island-nation was only ninety miles from the U.S., missiles could be lobbed into its cities.

President John F. Kennedy ordered a naval blockade to keep Russian ships from reaching Cuba, and he called Russia’s actions a “clandestine, reckless and provocative threat to world peace.” U.S. forces were then put on a DEFCON 2 watch, the highest military alert reached since World War II.

Nikita Khrushchev, meanwhile, the defiant first secretary of the USSR’s Communist Party, ordered the bulk of his ships carrying the nuclear hardware headed in the direction of Cuba to turn back. But one of them, the tanker, Bucharest, sailed on to confront the U.S. blockade. The aircraft carrier, USS Essex, and the destroyer, USS Gearing were sent to intercept it; as the tanker approached; the crew was ready to sink it, but President Kennedy gave the order to stand down, to deflect the risk a shooting war.

The U.S.S.R. continued its military buildup around Cuba, but eventually they agreed to cease, if America dismantled its missiles in Turkey. The U.S. agreed. This was the beginning — and the end — of the prelude to World War III.

The Grateful American Book Prize recommends “Thirteen Days/Ninety Miles: The Cuban Missile Crisis” by Norman H. Finkelstein.

Letters to remember
Abigail Smith was a feisty, self-taught intellectual — who could also be considered America’s first suffragette. She married John Adams on October 25, 1764. Adams became the country’s second president. The two were Federalists and abolitionists; she was an attentive, devoted wife, but Abigail was no mouse. She spoke her opinions, regardless of the male-centric time during which she lived.

In a variety of letters to her husband, Abigail expressed her thoughts about the role of women in society. When John Adams ascended to the presidency in 1797, she wrote:

“All men would be tyrants if they could” and warned her husband of the consequences of ignoring the wants and needs of women as new laws are enacted. “If particular care and attention is not paid to the Ladies, we are determined to foment a rebellion and will not hold ourselves bound by any laws in which we have no voice, or Representation.”

The Grateful American Book Prize recommends “My Dearest Friend: Letters of Abigail and John Adams” by John Adams, Abigail Adams, and Margaret A. Hogan.

–This feature is courtesy of The Grateful American Book Prize, which is an annual award given to authors who have created outstanding works of historical fiction or nonfiction for seventh to ninth graders.

Industries thriving in the pandemic
By Anne Chan, PhD, MFT

The pandemic has created a significant negative impact on the economy, with millions left unemployed. Entire industries have been affected adversely, with hiring freezes still in effect today. Whenever I check out business news, the outlook seems as gloomy as the sky before a winter storm. But even gloomy clouds have a silver lining. So too the outlook for quite a few jobs and industries. Today’s column will focus on eight industries that have thrived during the pandemic and are projected to grow in the next year. Here they are in no particular order:

The film and sports industries took a hit during the pandemic, but videogaming emerged a clear winner, grossing over $100 billion during 2020. Some experts predict that this growth will slow in 2021, but others predict even more growth. Perhaps an indication of how things will go for the gaming industry is the fact that tech giants like Facebook, Apple, and Google all have plans to be part of this industry.

There seemed to be nonstop hiring from the major delivery companies during the pandemic. The future appears bright for delivery services, given that people are now accustomed to ordering online and are enjoying the convenience of having practically everything delivered right to their doorsteps.

In the early months of the pandemic, some healthcare workers (such as respiratory therapists and nurses) were completely overwhelmed. There was an urgent need for people in these specialties. However, other medical practitioners reported a drop in business as people opted to postpone non-urgent procedures. Things seem to be normalizing somewhat in healthcare.

Years before the pandemic hit, I scheduled my first telehealth appointment and absolutely loved it. It seemed nothing short of a miracle to be able to schedule an appointment with a doctor at the last minute, be seen right on time and spend zero time in a germy waiting room. Many doctors and mental health workers pivoted to telehealth as a result of the pandemic. The future for telehealth looks bright. There are estimates that telehealth has the potential to reach a quarter of a trillion dollars in revenue.

Online shopping
Just a few pre-pandemic Christmases ago, online shopping was on the rise, but most people still preferred to make purchases at stores. This is no longer true, especially in the wake of the pandemic. Online shopping is here to stay and is predicted to grow even more. During the pandemic, online grocery delivery services were heavily in demand, but it remains to be seen if people will continue to use such services long-term. On the other hand, it does appear that online shopping for non-grocery items will continue to stay strong.

Video conferencing
Video conferencing software became an essential service for businesses as well as individuals, so much so that “zoom fatigue” became part of our daily lexicon. But the video conferencing industry is far from fatigued. It has experienced exponential growth in the pandemic and is likely to continue its growth in the future. This is bad news for those who are tired of online meetings, but great news for those who want to work in this sector.

Online education
During the pandemic, every person from the littlest kindergartner to advanced graduate students pivoted to online education. At the same time, people flocked to distance learning sites to upgrade their skills. The convenience and affordability of online education cannot be matched by brick-and-mortar establishments. It is estimated that online education could net over $300 billion dollars this year.

Real estate
At the beginning of the pandemic, it seemed as if people would just hunker down and stay put, thus causing a housing market depression. But then the prolonged period of remote work appeared to create a new phenomenon of moving to another location. A rush of buying and selling of houses ensued. One realtor I talked to said she was completely exhausted attending to customers who were wanting to buy, sell, or refinance. According to the California Association of Realtors, California home sales are still strong, even by pre-pandemic standards. This trend is projected to continue for the residential real estate market.

If you are a job seeker, take a look at these industries and consider getting your foot in the door. Even entry-level applicants could be well-positioned if they landed a job in one of the industries mentioned in this article. I have chosen not to plug companies but encourage you to use due diligence in researching the right company for you in the right sector.

Anne Chan is a career counselor and licensed psychotherapist in Union City. She specializes in helping people find happiness in their careers and lives. You can reach her at annechantcv@gmail.com.
© Anne Chan, 2021

News and notes from around the world
Submitted by The Association of Mature American Citizens

Finders keepers
The vacation Mr. and Mrs. Noreen Wredberg and her husband took in Arkansas paid for itself — big time, said the Association of Mature American Citizens [AMAC]. While there, the California tourists made it a point to visit Crater of Diamonds State Park. “I first saw the park featured on a TV show several years ago. When I realized we weren't too far away, I knew we had to come,” Mrs. Wredberg told reporters after finding the biggest diamond found in the park this year. She and her husband had been strolling through the park for less than an hour when she spotted the gem sparkling in the sunlight — a 4.38 carat yellow diamond, worth about $15,330 or more. The park has a “finders keepers” policy for visitors who find diamonds.

Drought reveals eerie ghost town
An unusual ghost town suddenly appeared in Utah when a drought caused Rockport Reservoir in Summit County to start drying up, AMAC reported. Photographer Devon Dewey visited the reservoir and used a drone to record a bird’s eye view of the scene. “It was really interesting to be standing at an overlook for the reservoir and to see faint traces of foundations of old homes and a road all below where the water would normally be. The whole area is pretty flat and uniform, so even though the foundations are old and mostly gone, you can still see them clearly.”

Mr. Goxx, the cryptocurrency trader
Most of us might have a hard time understanding the ins and outs of cryptocurrency trading but an investor by the name of Mr. Goxx seems to have an instinct for this 21st century financial trend, though it’s likely he, too, doesn’t know cryptocurrencies from cheese, according to the AMAC. You see, Mr. Goxx is a hamster in Germany and his portfolio during a recent three-month period showed a return of 24% on his investments, according to Markets Insider, an online financial news source. The Website notes that “Mr. Goxx's caretaker built the ‘Goxx Box,’ a crypto-rigged office attached to its larger home that gives the hamster the ability to perform various exercises that then execute specific cryptocurrency trades. The hamster can enter its office whenever it wants to make trades.”

— The Association of Mature American Citizens is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization representing membership in Washington, D.C. and in local congressional districts nationwide. More information is available on its website at www.amac.us.

Former asylum turned into Halloween attraction
By Edward Pevos

WESTLAND, Mich. (AP), Oct. 4 — A closed and abandoned Michigan asylum, already said to be haunted, has been turned into a high-tech, immersive horror-themed Halloween attraction.

Located in Westland, MLive explored Eloise Asylum a few years ago. This property has now been made into two haunted walk-throughs using two of the world's 20 Cold Spark Pyrotechnic Simulators. The attraction will also feature Advanced Projection Mapping Technologies often used at theme parks like Disney World and Universal Studios.

“It took a year of planning to do this and in terms of actual construction to make this happen, we started at the end of March,” Jay Kays, operations manager of Eloise Asylum, told MLive. “It was a super aggressive build schedule.”

The first walk-through attraction takes place on floor one of Building D and is being called Eloise Asylum. The second attraction is in the basement of the same building and is called Sub Level 1.

“We're bringing a theatrical storyline to the attraction,” added Kays. “The first storyline is welcoming you to Eloise, touring the property and seeing the different treatments going on there. Some great, some not so great. As you go the basement, you'll see some of the medical patients from upstairs being used as test subjects for a nuclear experiment.”

Millions of dollars were poured into this project to not only preserve the building, but to make the property into a sustainable business as a haunted attraction for years to come. “This experience is very much cutting-edge and high-tech. … Because of the mapping technology, it's very immersive. It's like a haunted art museum, but we also encapsulate what is a traditional haunt, so prepare to be scared like at a haunted house. We just sprinkled some extra magic into it.” Tickets are priced at $40 each and include access to both haunted attractions. VIP tickets are $65. The horror walk-throughs each last 35 to 40 minutes.

Michigan rocker Alice Cooper was on hand to check out the asylum and for the dedication of Alice Cooper Court, a stretch of road off Michigan Avenue by Eloise.

The haunted attraction will take visitors through Building D, also known as the Kay Beard Building. It's one of just a few buildings remaining out of about 70 on the entire complex. Eloise was founded as a poorhouse in 1839 before it became one of the largest public healthcare facilities in the U.S. At one time, it was once one of the largest hospital complexes in the country, if not the largest.

The first inmate of the asylum was admitted in 1841, Bridget “Biddy” Hughes. She remained there until her death in 1895. Built in 1931, Building D once housed 409 patients. Psychiatric care ended at Eloise in 1979. The general hospital closed in 1984. Most of the complex's 75 buildings were razed by the mid-80s.

Eloise pioneered many treatments for the mentally ill including electroshock therapy, insulin shock therapy, television therapy, recreational, music therapy and occupational therapy.

What are the 10 largest U.S. lottery jackpots ever won?
The Associated Press

Here is a look at the 10 largest U.S. jackpots that have been won and the states where the winning tickets were sold:

1. $1.586 billion, Powerball, Jan. 13, 2016 (three tickets, from California, Florida, Tennessee)
2. $1.537 billion, Mega Millions, Oct. 23, 2018 (one ticket, from South Carolina)
3. $1.05 billion, Mega Millions, Jan. 22, 2021 (one ticket, from Michigan)
4. $768.4 million, Powerball, March 27, 2019 (one ticket, from Wisconsin)
5. $758.7 million, Powerball, Aug. 23, 2017 (one ticket, from Massachusetts)
6. $731.1 million, Powerball, Jan. 20, 2021 (one ticket, from Maryland)
7. $699.8 million, Powerball, Oct. 4, 2021 (one ticket, from California)
8. $687.8 million, Powerball, Oct. 27, 2018 (two tickets, from Iowa and New York)
9. $656 million, Mega Millions, March 30, 2012 (three tickets, from Kansas, Illinois and Maryland)
10. $648 million, Mega Millions, Dec. 17, 2013 (two tickets, from California and Georgia)

Sources: AP archives, www.megamillions.com and www.powerball.com.

Alameda County Fair Brings New Entertainment and Activities
Submitted by Alameda County Fair

There is excitement in the air as Alameda County Fair gets ready to welcome the community back to the Fairgrounds and “Come Together” safely for a revival of good old fashioned family fun.

The Fair, which opens October 22-31 at the Fairgrounds in Pleasanton, has brought back all of the traditional Fair favorites, such as the carnival, rides, Fair foods, and live concerts, but has also introduced several new activities and special features.

The Stella Artois Grandstand will offer thrilling entertainment from Imperial Knights Extreme Medieval Stunt Show, which are new to the Fair and feature a theatrical full contact jousting show. FMX Freestyle Motocross will also take place daily at the Grandstand, wowing crowds with their eye-popping stunts.

Brand new entertainment acts will be featured daily, with nightly concerts from such hit bands as Smash Mouth, Night Ranger, WAR, The Garth Guy, and Journey Revisited. Plus, strolling entertainers like Slim and Curly, Tadpole the Clown, and Roberto the Magnificent will ensure there is fun around every corner.

Several special features have also been re-imagined and revamped, including Fiesta Hispana: Dia de Los Muertos Celebration which will showcase performances from Mariachi San Francisco, In Lak’ech Danza Azteca and Grupo Folklorico Yolotli Guerrerence.

Whether it is gourmet grilled cheese sandwiches, monster corn dogs, or deep-fried treats, guests will have no problem filling up on all their favorites.

During the 2021 Fair, tickets will be sold by the day and capacity will be limited to enhance safety and guest experience. All guests (ages 2 and up), vaccinated and unvaccinated, are required to wear a mask indoors. When outdoors, face coverings remain optional for all guests.

Admission: (For the safety of our guests, capacity will be limited)
• Adults (13-61) — $18 (Earns $3 Reward)
• Seniors (62+) — $15 (Earns $2 Reward)
• Kids (6-12) — $15 (Earns $2 Reward)
• General Parking – FREE Monday through Friday; $15 Saturday and Sunday
• Unlimited Carnival Wristbands — $30 Advance Purchase, $35 Monday-Thursday, $40 Friday-Sunday, any one day of Fair
• Sky Ride — $6 unlimited rides, any one day of Fair
• Military and Veterans free all day, every day with valid ID

When you buy your tickets online you will earn Rewards with every purchase. These rewards can be used on food and drinks during the Fair and at participating local businesses before, during and after the Fair.

For additional details, including schedules, concert and ticket info, visit the Fair’s website at alamedacountyfair.com.

Alameda County Fair
Friday, Oct 22 – Sunday, Oct 31
Mon – Fri: 3 p.m. – 10 p.m.
Sat – Sun: 10 a.m. – 10 p.m.
Alameda County Fairgrounds
4501 Pleasanton Ave., Pleasanton
(925) 426-7600
Tickets: adult: $18; senior and children: $15
Parking: Mon – Fri: free; Sat – Sun: $15

Spooky tours at local historic homes
Submitted by Marcess Owings
Photos courtesy of Hayward Area Historical Society

Autumn is the season for longer nights and mysterious stories, and nothing is spookier than when the stories are rooted in truth. The Hayward Area Historical Society is bringing nighttime tours back to McConaghy House and Meek Mansion just in time for spooky season. “Beyond the Veil” tours at McConaghy House are available on Friday, October 22 and Saturday, October 23, while tours at Meek Mansion are available on Friday, October 29 and Saturday, October 30.

One part history, one part storytelling and one part thrills, these tours are not your usual haunted house packed with jump scares and flashing lights. A ghostly tour guide will escort brave souls through these reportedly haunted Victorian mansions to hear of tragic tales, death and mourning traditions, spiritualism and divination, and more.

Those who are interested in paranormal investigations at the houses will be happy to hear that there will be a ghost hunt following the Saturday tour for an additional cost. Paranormal docents will take over, and guests will have an opportunity to investigate alongside seasoned ghost hunters.

McConaghy House is a fully-furnished Victorian house museum next to Kennedy Park in Hayward. Meek Mansion is a stately Italianate style house located inside Meek Estate Park in Cherryland. The houses are rarely open at night, so this is an unusual opportunity to experience both houses in near complete darkness.

Tickets are $25 for the tour only, and $75 for the tour and investigation. Tickets must be purchased in advance, as no tickets will be available at the door. Saturday ticket priority will be given to those interested in both the tour and investigation. More information about Beyond the Veil tours is available online at www.haywardareahistory.org or by calling (510) 581-0223.

Beyond the Veil historic home tours

McConaghy House
Friday, Oct 22 & Saturday, Oct 23
7:15 p.m. & 8:30 p.m.
18701 Hesperian Blvd., Hayward

Meek Mansion
Friday, Oct 29 & Saturday, Oct 30
7:15 p.m. & 8:30 p.m.
17365 Boston Rd., Hayward

(510) 581-0223
Tour: $25
Tour & investigation: $75

Tri-City’s church celebrates 135 years
Submitted by Rev. Ed Choa

Irvington Presbyterian Church has been part of the Irvington District neighborhood since the very beginning. The story of its growth is intertwined with the story of the city, including the name of the Irvington District itself.

In its early years, Irvington District was known as “Washington Corners.” There, a small congregation – the beginnings of what is now Irvington Presbyterian Church – gathered each week in a chapel on the campus of Washington College where Timber Creek Terrace now stands. The dedicated congregation was served by college ministers, one of whom was Rev. James McCollough.

In the spring of 1884, the town met for talks about a much-needed name change, as deliveries for Washington Corners were erroneously being sent to the town of Washington. Suggestions were offered, including Rev. McCollough’s contribution – “Irvington,” after the Indiana suburb where he attended seminary. None of the names found favor with the townspeople and no consensus was reached.

Finally, a chance meeting between Rev. McCollough and his friend, an employee of Central Pacific Railroad, led to the printing of a new railroad timetable with “Washington Corners” replaced by “Irvington.” Although townspeople were less than enthused with the name change, deliveries began arriving and the name held.

The same year, Rev. Robert L. McHatton, one of the ministers who served the growing chapel at Washington College, shared his vision of building a church with professor Judge Durham, the eponym of Durham Road. Durham pledged $100 to begin building, and G.M. Walters, a Washington Corners merchant, donated the property on which the church still stands. The building was completed in 1886.

In 1998, the ladies of Irvington Presbyterian Church decided to help the hungry in their community. They rallied other local churches together to provide free breakfasts on the day after Thanksgiving. Tri-City Free Breakfast Program was born. Now in its 23rd year, the program continues to faithfully offer free breakfast on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, staffed completely by volunteers.

In 2020, Irvington Presbyterian Church responded to the COVID-19 pandemic by creating a Saturday Pantry where families in need could drive by and pick up food.

Presently, Irvington Presbyterian Church campus is shared with a community of churches that seek to care for the diverse Tri-City communities. Each week, the churches hold services spanning four languages, including Mandarin, Kerala, Telegu and Spanish.

Irvington Presbyterian Church invites the Tri-City community to celebrate its 135th Anniversary with a celebratory Sunday service on October 24, 2021 at 10 a.m. at 4184 Irvington Ave., Fremont, CA.

Irvington Presbyterian Church anniversary service
Sunday, Oct 24
10 a.m.
4184 Irvington Ave., Fremont
(510) 657-3133

Running Dead 5K Fun Run Trunk or Treat
Submitted by Robert Magbanua

Union City Community & Recreation Services has back-to-back Halloween events on Sunday October 24. Bring your family and get active with our “5K Fun Run and Zombie Challenge,” where you will race towards the finish while dodging zombies trying to capture your flags along the trail. Survive the zombie apocalypse with at least one flag on your hip, and you will be entered into a raffle to win a cool prize! Award medals are given to the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place winners of each category. All proceeds from this challenge will benefit the American Diabetes Association.

Following the race is an afternoon of ghoulish games and spooky holiday fun at our Trunk-or-Treat, a perfect way to celebrate Halloween early with your young ones. Two separate costume contests will be held; one post-race, and the other during the Trunk-or-treat. All youth 5K Fun Run registrants have access to the Trunk-or-Treat portion of this event. Families also have the option to register for Trunk-or-Treat only. Simply select that option when registering.

Grab your costumes, and register today! Visit www.unioncity.org/reg and search “Running Dead” to register for the 5k Fun Run, Trunk-or-Treat, or both. For more information, call
(510) 675-5600.

Running Dead 5K Fun Run Trunk or Treat
Sunday, Oct 24
8 a.m. Race Check-in
9 a.m. Race Starts
10:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.: Carnival & Trunk or Treat
Civic Center/City Hall
34009 Alvarado-Niles Rd., Union City
(510) 675-5600

Alameda County Water District Board
October 14 2021

• 2021 WaterSense Award Recognition.

Consent calendar:
• Approval of minutes from the September 9 board meeting and the September 23 special board meeting.
• Ratification of payment of audited demands dated September 3, September 10, September 17 and September 24, 2021.
• Resolution finding the Washington Booster Station Flowmeter Project is exempt from California Environmental Quality Act, and approving the project.
• Resolution adopting a mitigated negative declaration and mitigation monitoring and reporting program, and approving the Curtner Road booster station upgrade project.

Action items:
• Authorization of an eight-year agreement for a leak detection and monitoring system with Mueller Water Products Inc./Echologics, LLC for an amount not to exceed $1,051,500.
• Authorization of agreement for meter shop upgrades and support services. Motion adopted.
• Award a contract for the Niles Cone Groundwater Basin Extraction Well Site Evaluation Project.
• Resolution making findings from Assembly Bill 361 that the proclaimed state of emergency continues to impact the ability to meet safely in person and allowing public meetings held virtually to continue.

Aziz Akbari Aye
James Gunther Aye
Judy Huang Aye
Paul Sethy Aye
John Weed Aye

New law raises standards on assigned debt collectors
Submitted by Jeff Barbosa
October 4, 2021

California Governor Gavin Newsom has signed legislation by Senator Bob Wieckowski (D-Fremont) to require assigned debt collectors to provide more information to consumers and to show that they have authority to collect the debt.

The measure, SB 531, was approved with bipartisan backing in the Legislature on September 1 and approved by the governor on October 4. It is supported by legal service providers across the state.

“With his signature today, Governor Newsom strengthens protections for Californians struggling with debt and brings more transparency into the assigned debt collection process,” said Wieckowski, a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee. “I authored SB 531 because for too long we failed to properly shield consumers from abuses that this bill will end. Now consumers can demand more information and be more certain that they actually owe the debt and the collector has proper authority to collect it. Instead of being leery about dealing with some firm they do not recognize, they can respond with certainty when they are contacted.”

The Legislature enacted the Fair Debt Buying Practices Act in 2013 after receiving numerous complaints about collections against the wrong person, targeting debt that had already been paid and repeated attempts to collect incorrect debt amounts. The Act requires debt buyers who have debt sold to them to have proof of their ownership and allows consumers to request that proof. The law also requires disclosure of how much debt is owed, any fees or interests due and the date of the last payment. SB 531 now applies those higher standards to collectors who are working with assigned debt.

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau found that one of the top nationwide complaints it received from consumers were collectors attempting to collect on debt that was not owed. It was also a top complaint among California consumers.

The California Low Income Consumer Coalition (CLICC) is one of the organizations supporting the new law. “Too often, consumers hear from debt collectors they have never heard of,” said CLICC Executive Director Ted Mermin. “Unsurprisingly, people often don’t respond to these strangers who are telling them to send money. This bill will give consumers information they need, in time for them to get an attorney or prepare to defend themselves. It’s an important step forward.”

The bill is also supported by the Public Law Center, Center for Responsible Lending, Neighborhood Legal Services of Los Angeles County and the Western Center on Law and Poverty.

Wieckowski represents the 10th District in the State Senate, which includes southern Alameda County and parts of Santa Clara County. Constituents who need information or assistance on state issues can call the senator’s district office at (510) 794-3900 or send an email to https://sd10.senate.ca.gov/contact/email.

Fremont City Council
October 5, 2021

Consent Calendar:
• Award contract for California Nursery Adobe Restroom Renovation Project to Streamline Builders for $193,200.

Ceremonial Items:
• Proclaim October 5, 2021 as National Energy Efficiency Day.
• Resolution in support of Afghan refugees and people of Afghanistan.

Public Communications:
• Support of bike lane on Paseo Padre Pkwy.
• Compensation for staff and council; effect on decision-making.
• Alameda County redistricting efforts; next hearing October 12 (on Zoom).

Scheduled Items:
• Public Hearing to consider appeal of Historical Architectural Review Board upholding staff determination of eligibility and insufficient evidence to support demolition of potential Historic Register resource at 40871 High Street. Appeal approved 6-1 (Nay: Shao)

Mayor Lily Mei Aye
Vice Mayor Yang Shao, District 4 Aye, 1 Nay
Teresa Keng District 1 Aye
Rick Jones District 2 Aye
Jenny Kassan District 3 Aye
Raj Salwan District 5 Aye
Teresa Cox District 6 Aye

Fremont City Council
October 12, 2021


Consent Calendar:
• Award construction contract in the amount of $6,172,198.18 for traffic signal modernization. (Salwan, recuse)
• Approve second service agreement amendment with Ascent Environmental, Inc. for completion of Climate Action Plan update at $39,730.
• Authorize budget appropriation in the amount of $563,844 for Police Department generator replacement.
• Award contract to Guerra Construction Group in the amount of $269,956 for Boathouse Lift Station replacement project.
• Support 2022 State Transportation Improvement Program for the I-880/Decoto Road Interchange Modernization Project.
• Accept Measure B Safe Routes to School Mini-Grant funds in the amount of $267,000 for Fremont Boulevard and Country Drive Intersection Improvement Project.

Ceremonial Items:
• Proclaim October as Children’s Environmental Health Month.
• Proclaim October 2021 as Domestic Violence Awareness Month.
• Present Platinum Level Beacon Vanguard Award and Leadership & Innovation Award to City of Fremont from Institute for Local Government.

Scheduled Items:
• Public Hearing: Affordable Housing Ordinance update. Single Family & Townhomes maximum fee at $44/square ft in a two-step implementation. PASSED 5-2 (Nay: Shao, Kassan)

Other Business:
• Presentation by California State Senator Bob Wieckowski (District 10)

Mayor Lily Mei Aye
Vice Mayor Yang Shao, District 4 Aye, 1 Nay
Teresa Keng District 1 Aye
Rick Jones District 2 Aye
Jenny Kassan District 3 Aye, 1 Nay
Raj Salwan District 5 Aye, 1 recusal
Teresa Cox District 6 Aye

Hayward Unified begins COVID-19 vaccine clinics on campuses
Submitted by Hayward Unified School District

On Thursday, October 14, Hayward Unified School District (HUSD) will launch the first of several COVID-19 vaccine clinics on its secondary school campuses ahead of its student vaccine mandate deadline. The goal is to promote the safety and effectiveness of vaccines while making them accessible to families at their schools.

Hayward Unified School District (HUSD) Board of Trustees voted at their September 22 meeting to require vaccines for students 12 and older with the goal of preventing the transmission of COVID-19 in schools. Students will need to show proof of vaccination by December 17, 2021.

Upon authorization of the vaccine for other age groups, the student vaccine mandate will apply to all eligible children within that age range. The resolution passed by the board includes a provision that exempts students from receiving the vaccine as allowed by California law. Students unable to produce proof of vaccination by the deadline date will submit to weekly COVID-19 testing, which the district also offers on its school campuses.

For more information: https://www.husd.us/vaccine
Insight into Local Government – Learning about Public Office
Submitted by LWVEA

The League of Women Voters of Eden Area (LWVEA) invites you to three-part series of workshops to gain insight into how local government operates, how local officials make decisions and serve on local boards or offices, and what it takes to run for local elected office. These educational workshops will provide insight into the following topics:

• Local elected officials describe their office, its function, and opinions about serving
• Primary function of local elected officials
• Where does funding come from?
• Critical factors to consider before you file
• How to file to run for office
• How to set up and run an election campaign

The first two sessions will feature local elected officials describing their offices, how the office functions, and their opinions about serving. The third session is for individuals interested in learning more about running for local office.

Session One
Wednesday, Oct 20
7 p.m. – 8 p.m.
Panelist Rick Hatcher, HARD Board Member
Join Zoom Meeting

Session Two
Wednesday, Nov 17
7 p.m. – 8 p.m.
Panelist Barbara Halliday, City of Hayward Mayor
Register in advance for this meeting:

Session Three
Wednesday, Dec 15
7:00 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.
Register in advance for this meeting:

Local city names new City Manager
Submitted by Geneva Bosques

Karena Shackelford has been selected as the City of Fremont’s newest City Manager replacing Mark Danaj who resigned September 30. Shackelford was selected by Fremont City Council during a special closed session meeting on Tuesday, October 12.

“It’s an honor and privilege to announce the selection of Karena Shackelford as Fremont’s next city manager,” said Mayor Lily Mei. “Karena is a dynamic leader in our city organization with a proven track record of leading complex projects, effectively implementing the council’s policy direction, and building positive relationships throughout the organization and community. When we began discussions to select Fremont’s next leader, the council was decisive and unanimous in recommending Karena and we all believe she is the right choice at the right time.”

Shackelford has more than 20 years of experience in local government, starting her career with City of San Jose. She joined the City of Fremont in 2006 and served in numerous capacities before becoming Assistant City Manager three years ago. During that time, she helped to manage day-to-day operations, while specifically overseeing Public Works, Community Services, and Information Technology Services departments.

A Fremont native
“I am so proud and honored to assume this important responsibility for my hometown and the city where I’ve spent the majority of my career,” Shackelford said. “I want to thank the City Council for their trust in me and for their leadership as we continue to ensure Fremont is seen as a model city in fostering innovation and addressing issues that our community cares about. As City Manager, I will champion Fremont’s strong tradition of fiscal sustainability, safety and excellent customer service.” She is the city’s ninth City Manager during its 65-year-history.

Shackelford has a bachelor of science degree in Business Administration from San Jose State University, a master’s degree in Business Administration from Saint Mary’s College, and is a member of the International City/County Management Association.

City Council will formally consider approval of an employment contract for Shackelford at its regularly scheduled meeting at 7:00 p.m. October 19.

Ohlone College Board of Trustees
October 13, 2021

Ceremonial items:
• Trustee Elisa Martinez swearing-in.
• Proclamation of Domestic Violence Awareness Month.
• Proclamation of Filipino American Heritage Month.
• Proclamation of National Disabilities Awareness Month.

Consent Agenda:
• Approval September 2021 payroll warrants.
• Approval various personnel actions.
• Removal Ohlone College Emergency Declaration.
• Approval memorandum of understanding between Ohlone Community College District and the California School Employees Association and the Service Employees International Union on COVID-19 related working conditions.
• Approval of the tentative agreement between United Faculty of Ohlone and Ohlone Community College District on contract duration: July 1, 2020 — June 30, 2023; contract period: July 1, 2021-June 30, 2022.
• California Community College Trustees board report.
• Associated Students Ohlone College 2021-2022 budget.
• Reviewed purchased orders.
• Measure G Project 6105 — Academic Core Buildings Emergency Responder Radio System, Contra Costa • Electric and EMCOR Co., Notice of Completion.
• Measure G Project 6114, Building 5 Renovation, D.L. Falk Construction, Inc, unilateral change order.
• Measure G Project 6114, Building 5 Renovation Trash Enclosure Innovate Concrete, Inc., agreement for construction services.
• Measure G Project 6114, Building 5 Renovation, LPAS Architecture + Design, amendment for architectural services.
• Resolution to consider proposals for joint occupancy lease to operate food and beverage services.
• Ratification of contracts.

• Pursuit of a student housing grant application through the Higher Education Student Housing and Capacity Expansion Grant Programs. Motion adopted.

• Richard Watters, Chair Aye
• Suzanne Lee Chan, Vice Chair Absent
• Greg Bonaccorsi Aye
• Lance Kwan Aye
• Jan Giovannini-Hill Absent
• Elisa Martinez Aye
• Dr. Rakesh Sharma Aye
• Kevin Hamilton, Student Member Aye

State of the City Address
Submitted by City of Union City

The City of Union City is hosting the 2021 State of the City address delivered by Mayor Carol Dutra-Vernaci on Tuesday, October 19 at 6:30pm. Due to the pandemic, the event will be streamed virtually on the City's Zoom teleconferencing platform and on Facebook Live.

In the Mayor's address, she will look back on the City's past accomplishments and challenges, and introduce the City Council's priorities moving forward. There will be opportunities for viewers to ask questions in a live Q&A segment.

Union City State of The City Address
Tuesday, October 19
6:30 p.m.
Passcode: 50QA.d5.
Dial (for higher quality, dial a number based on your current location):
US: (213) 338-8477 or (408) 638-0968 or (301) 715-8592 or (646) 518-9805
Webinar ID: 826 0058 5400
Passcode: 47864478
Dear Friend,

It is with great honor that I invite you to my State of the 10th Senate District Address and Awards Ceremony on Thursday, October 28th. If you've attended in the past, you know that this event is a district tradition that our community looks forward to attending every year. With ongoing concerns related to the COVID-19 pandemic, we will once again be doing this event in a virtual format.

In addition to my annual report on our accomplishments in Sacramento this session, we will recognize Local Hero Award winners selected from throughout the 10th Senate District. We hope you are able to join us for this very special evening.

If you have any questions, please e-mail me at Senator.Wieckowski@senate.ca.gov
It is an honor and a privilege to represent you in the Senate.

Bob Wieckowski
Senator, 10th District

Senator Bob Wieckowski's
State of the 10th Senate District Address and Awards Ceremony
Thursday, October 28th, 2021
6 p.m. – 7 p.m.
Register for Zoom Link: https://bit.ly/2YRHa6H

Enjoy the beauty and science behind fall color
By Melinda Myers
Photo credit: Melinda Myers, LLC

The brilliant fall color in our landscapes is a magical transformation that happens each year. And the science behind it is just as intriguing.

Each fall as the days shorten, our deciduous trees and shrubs begin this transformation. The plants produce less of the chlorophyll that gives leaves their normal green color. The existing chlorophyll starts breaking down, revealing the underlying pigments of yellow, red or orange.

The carotenoid and xanthophyll pigments assist chlorophyll in capturing light and producing sugar during the growing season. Beta-carotene contributes to the orange and orange-yellow fall color. Lutein is the most prominent xanthophyll pigment producing bright yellow fall color. There are over 80 different pigments in these two categories contributing to the variations in fall color.

Tanins in leaves contribute to golden and brown fall colors. These are thought to discourage animals and insect pests from feeding on leaves and help defend plants against disease organisms. At the same time, these plants begin to create an abscission layer between the leaf and stem. This barrier prevents sugars produced in the leaves from moving down into the roots for storage.

Purple and red fall color, from anthocyanin foliar pigments, is produced when sugars build up and are trapped in the leaves. This results in brilliant red and purplish-red fall color. Some of these pigments are present during the growing season and can be seen in new growth and mature leaves of some plants. These add color to the garden, help protect plant cells from high light damage, and may discourage animals and insects from dining on plants.

Warm, sunny days followed by cool nights without a hard frost mean more sugar and better red, orange, and purple fall color. Sufficient soil moisture helps keep the leaf color bright for a longer period of time. Leaf color fades, turns brown and leaves drop from the tree more quickly during dry fall weather.

Fall foliage is not restricted to deciduous trees and shrubs. The leaves of many of our favorite perennials also turn brilliant colors in the fall.

Solomon’s seal and hosta leaves turn a beautiful yellow, echoing the fall flowers of witch hazel and yellow leaves of ginkgo and quaking aspen. The delicate heart-shaped leaves of barrenwort, botanically known as Epimedium, turn red in fall. Some of the leaves drop in fall like with most trees and shrubs. Others will persist through winter and drop as new leaves and flowers appear in spring.

Perennial geranium and Bergenia leaves turn reddish-purple in fall. Both will persist, adding color to winter and early spring gardens. Brighten up the fall landscape with the fine texture and amber-gold fall foliage of Angelina sedum and willow amsonia. The fluffy white seed heads of our native little bluestem complement the coppery-red fall color that persists throughout winter.

Genetics determine the color each plant tends to produce in fall, while weather and the plant’s health influence if and how intensely color will be expressed. Consider fall color when adding plants to the landscape. Then provide proper care to keep them healthy and looking their best throughout the year.

Melinda Myers is the author of over 20 gardening books, including The Midwest Gardener’s Handbook and Small Space Gardening. She hosts The Great Courses “How to Grow Anything” DVD series and the nationally-syndicated Melinda’s Garden Moment TV & radio program. Myers is a columnist and contributing editor for Birds & Blooms magazine. Her web site is www.MelindaMyers.com.



Yoga in Hindi
11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
Focus on your body’s natural tendency toward health and self-healing. Bring a mat
Age Well Center South Fremont
47111 Mission Falls Ct., Fremont

Writing Personal Narratives-Immigrant Experience
10:00 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.
Write confidently about your life experiences
Via Zoom

First Presbyterian Church of Newark Youth Group
7 p.m.
Youth and young adults, students welcome
Contact: brian@newarkpress.org

Heartfulness Meditation
10 a.m. – 11 a.m.
Bring your own mat/cushion to class
Age Well Center South Fremont
47111 Mission Falls Ct., Fremont

San Lorenzo Street Eats
5 p.m. – 9 p.m.
Food trucks
500 Via Mercado, San Lorenzo

Ballroom Line Dancing Class
9 a.m.- 10 a.m.
Meet new people, develop confidence
Age Well Center South Fremont
47111 Mission Falls Ct., Fremont

Virtual Telescope Viewing R
9:00 p.m. – 10:30 p.m.
Free on Facebook Live
Join resident astronomers live from Chabot’s observation deck

Comedy Shows R$
8 p.m. – 9 p.m.
Improv by Made Up Theatre’s comedy troupe – Live and Online!
Proof of vaccination or negative Covid test required for entry
4000 Bay St., Suite B, Fremont
(510) 573-3633


Southern Alameda County Buddhist Church Family Service
10 a.m.
For link, call (510) 471-2581

First Presbyterian Church of Newark Worship Services
9:30 a.m.; Worship Service In-Person or Online
35450 Newark Blvd., Newark

St. Anne’s Episcopal Church Service
10 a.m.
In person or via Zoom
2791 Driscoll Rd., Fremont

Mondays & Wednesdays, September 20 – November 8
Become a Trained Music Volunteer
9:30 a.m. – 11:45 a.m.
Support the Music for Minors II by helping students

Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays, October 18 – 29
Drive thru COVID-19 Testing R
9:00 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.
Appointments only. Please wear a mask
Fremont Central Park Sports Complex
1110 Stevenson Blvd.

Tuesday – Sunday, October 9 – February 13
Color into Line: Pastels from the Renaissance to the Present
9:30 a.m. – 5:15 p.m.
More than 80 works spanning five centuries
Legion of Honor
100 34th Ave., San Francisco

Tuesdays, October 19 – November 9
Fiber Arts
9:00 a.m. – 10:30 a.m.
Learn how to create knitted art
Age Well Center Lake Elizabeth
40086 Paseo Padre Pkwy., Fremont

Wednesdays, October 6 – October 27 R
HPD Virtual Community Academy
6:00 p.m. – 8:15 p.m.
Learn about Hayward police department
18+ years
(510) 293-5051

Wednesdays, October 20 -December 15
Insight into Local Government R
7 p.m. – 8 p.m.
League of Women Voters invite you to a 3-part series
Session 1 – 10/20: panelist Rick Hatcher, HARD Board Member
Via Zoom: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/84373704437
Session 2 – 11/17: panelist Barbara Halliday, City of Hayward Mayor
Via Zoom: https://bit.ly/3FGUknD
Session 3 – 12/15: more info on running for office
Via Zoom: https://bit.ly/3AFDu4X

Second Thursdays, September 9 – June 9
Cafe Dad
6:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.
Hayward Unified School District program for fathers to support each other and obtain resources
Virtual meetings via Zoom
For more information contact: ep101@husd.k12.ca.us

Thursday, March 18 – Sunday November 7
Immersive Van Gogh
9 a.m. – 11 p.m. (times vary)
Walk-in exhibit with digital projections and music
SVN West San Francisco
10 South Van Ness Ave., San Francisco
Tickets: $24.99 – $39.99

Friday, October 1 – Sunday, October 31
Bay Day Challenge R
Explore 25 miles of SF Bay Trails, or choose 5 activities
Sign up online, complete remotely


Friday, October 22 – Sunday, October 31
Alameda County Fair
M-F: 10 a.m. – 10 p.m.
Sa-Su: 3 p.m. – 10 p.m.
Tickets sold by the day
4501 Pleasanton Ave., Pleasanton

Friday, October 22 – Sunday, October 31
Concerts at the Alameda County Fair $
8 p.m.
10/22: Kalimba: The Spirit of Earth Wind & Fire
10/23: Night Ranger
10/24: The Garth Guy: The Ultimate Garth Brooks Tribute Show
10/25: The Boys of Summer: Music of the Eagles
10/26: Lenny Williams
10/27: Smash Mouth
10/28: Rose Royce
10/29: WAR
10/30: Exposé
10/31: Journey Revisited
Tickets: https://bit.ly/3oG60Rl
Lucky Amphitheater
4501 Pleasanton Ave., Pleasanton

Second Saturdays, July – December
Talkin’ Dirt
11/13, 12/11
9 a.m. – 10 a.m.
Free webinar on gardening, hosted by LEAF
Via Zoom

Saturdays, October 2 – 23
New Ice Age Fossils Fundraiser $R
1 p.m. – 4 p.m.
Fossils found only a few feet under San Francisco Bay mud help us understand the evolution of the horse.
Children’s Natural History Museum
4074 Eggers Dr., Fremont
(510) 790-6284

Sunday, September 20 – Thursday, November 18
Affection for Chinese Calligraphy and Paintings
Monday – Friday: 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Calligraphy work from the Oriental Art Association
John O’Lague Galleria, Hayward City Hall
777 B St., Hayward
(510) 538-2787

Sundays, September 26 – December 5
Reflections of Light
12 Noon – 3 p.m.
Grand Opening for Public
Sunday, September 26
Artists use various media to portray reflected and refracted light
Dove Gallery, Park Victoria Church back lot
875 S. Park Victoria Dr., Milpitas


Tuesday, October 19
Union City State of the City Address
6:30 p.m.
Mayor looks back on past accomplishments and challenges, introduces future priorities
http://stateofthecity.union city.org
Passcode 50QA.d5

Tuesday, October 19
Fiesta Fundraiser $
4:00 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.
Food, drinks, games, DJ and dancing, raffles, tequila tasting
Coldwell Banker Realty
21060 Redwood Rd., #100, Castro Valley

Wednesday, October 20
Naturalization Information – How to Become a U.S. Citizen
5 p.m. – 6 p.m.
Free virtual information session by the USCIS
Webex Link: https://bit.ly/2YzP6cx
Meeting number (access code): 2761 341 3493
Meeting password: pbY39sBgBg$5

Wednesday, October 20
Free COVID-19 Vaccine and Testing
10:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.
Appointments and drop-ins welcome
For appointments: https://bit.ly/3FM9sQJ
Fremont Family Resource Center
39155 Liberty St.

Thursday, October 21
Fremont State of the City Address R
12 noon – 1 p.m.
Mayor Lily Mei on the city’s COVID-19 recovery efforts and other accomplishments
Via Zoom: https://bit.ly/30xH70n

Thursday, October 21
Immigration Options for Victims of Crimes
4:00 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.
Free virtual information session by the USCIS
Webex Link: https://bit.ly/3Dkr04e
Meeting number (access code): 2764 554 8204
Meeting password: fVKa7C3GkF9*

Thursday, October 21
Hayward Nonprofit Alliance
10 a.m.
Members share strategies to approach donors
Via Zoom: https://bit.ly/3oLDpKz
Meeting ID: 815 4042 4088
Passcode: 659643

Thursday, October 21
Pop-Up COVID-19 Clinic
9 a.m. – 1 p.m.
Receive a free COVID-19 vaccine and Zoo Pass
Oakland Zoo – Zimmer Auditorium
9777 Golf Links Rd., Oakland
(510) 632-9525

Friday, October 22
Latino Business Roundtable
9 a.m.
James Wheeler, General Manager of the Hayward Area Recreation and Park District (HARD)
Via Zoom: https://bit.ly/3mB5KAr
Meeting ID: 815 4042 4088
Passcode: 659643

Saturday, Oct 23
Chabot Starlight Gala $R
6 p.m. – 10 p.m.
Celebrate Chabot’s reopening with fine dining, behind-the-scenes, tours, stargazing, and more!
Chabot Space and Science Center
10000 Skyline Blvd., Oakland
(510) 336-7300

Starlight Gala: Relaunch

Saturday, October 23
Make A Difference Day
8 a.m. – 12 noon
Help the Keep Hayward Clean and Green Task Force beautify the neighborhood
Weekes Park
27182 Patrick Ave., Hayward
(510) 881-7745

Saturday, October 23
National Prescription Drug Take Back Day
10 a.m. – 2 p.m.
Drop off any unused or expired prescription drugs
Fremont Elks Lodge
38991 Farwell Dr., Fremont

Sunday, October 24
Running Dead 5K Fun Run Trunk or Treat
8 a.m. Race Check-in
9 a.m. Race Starts
10:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.: Carnival & Trunk or Treat
Civic Center/City Hall
34009 Alvarado-Niles Rd., Union City
(510) 675-5600

Tuesday, October 26
Veterans Life Science Symposium R
1 p.m. – 4 p.m.
Virtual, interactive career exploration – learn more about California’s life sciences

Tuesday, October 26
Facing Climate Change with Emotional Strength R
1:00 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.
Leslie Davenport talks about understanding and managing our anxiety over climate change
Via Zoom
Register at: www.aclibrary.org

Tuesday, October 26
Naturalization Online Filing Walkthrough
5 p.m. – 9 p.m.
Free virtual information session by the USCIS
Webex Link: https://bit.ly/3p3Vwvp
Meeting number (access code): 2761 467 2608
Meeting password: 4aiNh5ZSYm*8

Wednesday, October 27
Music & Movement
3:30 p.m.
Singing, dancing, and rhythmic movement. Come in costume!
(510) 733-1189

Thursday, October 28
State of the 10th Senate District Address R
6 p.m. – 7 p.m.
Senator Bob Wieckowski lists accomplishments and recognizes local heroes
Via Zoom
To register: https://bit.ly/2YRHa6H

Thursday, October 28 and Friday, October 29
Drive thru COVID-19 Vaccine R
12 noon – 3:30 p.m.
Appointments only. Please wear a mask
Fremont Central Park Sports Complex
1110 Stevenson Blvd.

Honor Roll

The Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi
New member – University of Southern California
• Winnie Hou of Union City

Veterans Life Science Symposium
Submitted by City of Fremont

Join Biocom California Institute for a virtual, interactive career exploration symposium to learn all about California’s vibrant life sciences industry on Tuesday October, 26. Learn about the thousands of different types of jobs available, not all of which require a background or degree in science. This free, half day event is open to veterans of all stages of transition with interest in exploring the most pressing needs of the life science industry, as well as key trends that are driving talent acquisition.


• Panel of top industry representatives from the four main categories of life science companies.

• Overview of Workforce Trends Report/careers in life science.

• Insights from a CEO who went from the US Army to the C-Suite.

• Breakout sessions with HR Professionals; “Tips and Tricks for Landing a Job in Life Sciences”

Our post-Symposium virtual happy hour will allow you to network and connect directly with life sciences professionals, Veterans and educators from college programs that serve veterans. Be the first to hear about Biocom California Institute’s upcoming 2022 Military Fellowship program and hear success stories from past participants.

Register today: https://www.biocom.org/EventDetail/?event=Veterans-Symposium-2021
For more information contact Karen Overklift at karen.overklift@biocom.org

Veterans Life Science Symposium
Tuesday, Oct 26
1 p.m. – 4 p.m.
Register at: https://www.biocom.org/EventDetail/?event=Veterans-Symposium-2021
Contact Karen Overklift at karen.overklift@biocom.org
Admission is free

Cherryland Community Center Grand Opening
Submitted by Jacquelyn Diaz

On Saturday, October 16, 2021, the Cherryland district of unincorporated Alameda County celebrated the grand opening of the $22M Cherryland Community Center. The event included a ribbon cutting and tours of the facility.

Officials attending the celebration included Alameda County District 4 Supervisor Nate Miley, District 3 Supervisor Wilma Chan, Hayward Area Recreation and Park District Board of Directors, and members of Cherryland Community Association.

Cherryland Community Center represents a significant partnership between Alameda County and Hayward Area Recreation and Park District (H.A.R.D.). Alameda County owns and constructed the facility, while H.A.R.D. is responsible for programming, operations and maintenance. Located adjacent to Meek Estate, the center has an improved and expanded parking lot.

The 17,500 square foot facility is a state-of-the-art and eco-friendly building, which will provide space for community members to build social connections, participate in cultural activities, develop life skills and have fun. It includes three multi-purpose rooms for activities and classes, a pre-kindergarten activity room, a reading/computer room with an Alameda County Library Annex and a large, modern reception hall with a catering kitchen to accommodate up to 250 people.

The Cherryland Community Center project was identified in 2009 as a priority during the Eden Area Livability Initiative process. Redevelopment tax increment funds were set-aside to pay for the purchase of property, design and construction. The Alameda County Board of Supervisors was able to retain these funds after the State dissolved local redevelopment agencies in 2011.

“This new facility provides a wonderful opportunity to connect this multi-cultural community through recreation, relaxation, and educational and social programs,” said HARD General Manager James Wheeler. “This building represents the strength of the partnership between Alameda County, the Hayward Area Recreation and Park District, and the Cherryland Community Association.”

Cherryland Community Center
278 Hampton Rd., Hayward

Compassion Report
Submitted by Marie Annette Burkart, SNDdeN

Compassionate Fremont joins other cities in the Bay Area in sponsoring the fourth annual United Against Hate Week, November 14-20. We encourage you to visit, like and share our Compassionate Fremont Facebook page anytime, especially during United Against Hate Week.

Things you can do:

Remember our posters? This year we are encouraging the community to reinvent, deconstruct, rethink the messaging, of the poster. Once done, take a photo and share with us on the Compassionate Fremont Facebook page.

We also hope people will share their own or others poetry on our Compassionate Fremont Facebook page. It can be anything that held you together, inspired you, incited you to action, or gave you hope during these very dark times.

The community is encouraged to share music or playlists that have helped during the last year. What did you listen to before or after the elections, or as we watched our cities erupt in protests, or what you felt the first time you spent time with friends? So please share how you used music during these challenging times.

A couple of our usual United Against Hate Week events fall outside the week this year, so please mark your calendars and join us.

Tri-City Interfaith Thanksgiving Service
Monday, November 22
7:30 pm
RSVP for Zoom link at https://bit.ly/interfaiththanksgiving2021

Candlelight Vigil for Those Affected by Homelessness
Monday, November 29
6 p.m.
St. James Episcopal Church
37051 Cabrillo Terrace (Thornton Ave. at Cabrillo)
Outside event – masks required

Flash Fiction Poetry results
By Arathi Satish and Nitika Sathiya

Fremont Cultural Arts Council (FCAC) is pleased to announce the results of the 2021 Flash Fiction Poetry Contest! Co-sponsored with Half Price Books, entries this year were poetry, on any subject.

Event organizer Al Minard said, “We had more than fifty poems entered and about 200 ballots cast. The event was supported in every possible way by Half-Price Books and local student volunteers.”

Margaret Thornberry, who selected the President’s Emeritus award, said, “I truly enjoyed each entry! Having a poetry contest this year, rather than prose, was an inspired idea, thanks to FCAC Board Member Al Minard. I learned about loneliness, love, friendship and freedom. I also learned about the Igorots of the Philippines and about the quiet heroism of Corrie Ten Boom. The 300-word limit left me wanting to know more. The rhythm, rhyme and wonderful images drawn in words were one and all, outstanding.”

Visitors to Half-Price Books selected winners by voting for their favorites. Elena Climent won 1st place with her poem, “My Time,” 2nd place went to Nitika Sathiya for “Regrets,” 3rd to Patricia van den Heuvel for “Making Waves,” 4th to Anastasiia Bieliaieve for “Without You,” and 5th to Jean Mussak for “Owls.” The five won cash prizes and Half-Price Books gift cards. Margaret Thornberry, President Emeritus of FCAC, selected “Casting the Spell” by Stephanie Gertsch for the President’s Emeritus Award (a Trio Tower donated by Nothing Bundt Cakes).

First place winner Elena Climent said that in future flash events she would like to write about her life and memories, remarking, “People should keep doing art because it keeps people of all ages sane. It’s especially important as you get older.” Jean Mussak, said that her owl poem was written the night before the deadline when she saw two owls outside her window. Nitika Sathiya, a Washington High School student and FCAC intern, said, “I love writing poems and it made me really happy to read, and see other people reading and learning from the different poems.”

Of her selection, Margaret Thornberry explained, “The piece I finally did choose was as solidly complete as a river stone. It spoke of isolation and the desire for connection and the fear of connection. It spoke in fairytale terms, but the reader knows this is not a fairy tale.”

Below are the 1st Place winner and President’s Emeritus winner. Look for the runners-up in next week’s issue!

My Time
By Elena Climent

Don’t rush me, Time,

Let me sit by the mountain
To watch the fertile valley
Getting hugged by the fog.
Don’t rush me Time

Let me dream by the rainbow
Until the new storm thunders.

Don’t rush me, Time,

Let me stop on my way
To smell every flower
And see the new bud bloom.
Under the sunny sky

Don’t rush me, Time,

Let me hold in my hands
Every drop of rain.
And lie under the pines
To count their thousand needles.

Don’t rush me, Time,

Let me touch with my eyes
The stars up in the sky
And kiss by the blue sea
Every grain of sand.

Now, Time, let me be calm,
Until my slender, quiet, last companion
With the scythe in his hand,
Takes me with him forever.

Casting the Spell
By Stephanie Gertsch

I built my tower one brick at a time
With walls too high for a prince to climb.
I built my tower brick by brick
The walls exactly a heartbeat thick.

I planted round a maze of thorns
be sure no rose was ever born.
I slowly glued each stone to stone
a princess waits, and waits alone.
Never, never to be free
Locked the door, lost the key.

A tower safe from every fear
Yet day by day and year by year
The walls will crumble stone to sand
The tower sink into the land
While in the dungeon wakens slow
A dreaming dragon down below.

So what brave prince will have the art
To crack my ribs and free my heart?

The rest of the winning poems can be read on the Fremont Cultural Arts Council website: www.fremontculturalartscouncil.org.

The human side of homelessness: Lisa
Submitted by Veena Kommu

This article is a continuation to the series by Veena Kommu, a local high schooler who decided to talk to the homeless people in the Bay Area, and get their stories out to the public. Her goal is to separate their character from their circumstances.

In an industrial part of the city, along a tree-lined road, are many trailers and trucks. Some trailers are in bad condition and probably never see any other part of the road than where they are parked. Gino and Lisa live in one of the trailers. Their lives had taken different trajectories, but circumstances forced their reunion.

Lisa used to live in Utah. She found courage to get out of a rocky fifteen-year relationship after her youngest daughter left to pursue a nursing career. For Lisa, the transition to being single was rough. She was a stay-at-home mom and had taken care of her daughters. She decided to move to be closer to her eldest daughter who is in the Bay Area. She was unable to afford to rent any apartment and moved into a trailer with her cousin Gino. Being with a relative also provided her with a sense of security. She has been searching for a job since she arrived in California. However, due to Covid and her health issues, she hasn’t seen much success.

As a child, Lisa did well in school, until she got pregnant as a high school junior, at which point she dropped out and moved in with her boyfriend. She blames herself for her current situation and acknowledges that her life would have been very different if she had not gotten get pregnant. Later, she had two more daughters and dedicated herself to taking care of them. Lisa feels satisfied that she was able to give a good life to her daughters and set them up on successful paths. Her eldest daughter lives in the Bay Area and is a nurse. She comes to visit Lisa every week.

Lisa is upfront about the problems she is facing. The area around the trailers is not particularly hygienic, although she keeps the trailer very clean. Getting potable water has been difficult due to lack of transportation. She is unable to give a permanent address and therefore has difficulty applying to jobs and getting government documents like a medical card. Some jobs she found required her to come at odd times, which was not possible due to lack of transportation.

A doctor and nurse stop by the area on a weekly basis to check on residents’ health. They give information on places to get food, showers and other basic necessities. Lisa is also thankful to organizations that drop by with donations of clothes, canned food, water, etc.

According to Lisa, the mental and emotional stress has been overwhelming. She cries often and hates her situation. She has been on antidepressants, and would have had trouble filling her prescription but is grateful for the weekly doctor visits. She doesn’t ask anyone for help and prays for better times.

Lisa’s emotional stress also stems from knowing how society tends to view homeless people as drug addicts living on government money. She doesn’t take recreational drugs, or go out and party. She gets happiness from the fact that she raised three good kids who are living independently. She doesn’t want to impose herself on them.

Life looks bleak at present because Lisa knows that even if she had a job, it would be a menial one, which would be difficult for her due to her poor health. Furthermore, she wouldn’t be making a living wage, especially in the Bay Area, and would have to continue to live streetside. She wants young girls to know that actions have consequences, and if she could turn the clock back, she would finish high school, get a college education and then raise a family.

The next article will focus on Lisa’s cousin Gino.

Writing coach shares advice
Submitted by Tish Davidson

For all of you writers and would-be writers who are stuck or just bewildered about what to do next in your project, help is on the way! Writing coach and author Joan Gelfand will be the featured speaker at Fremont Area Writers’ October 23 gathering. She’ll be talking about the 4 C’s approach of successful authors: Craft, Commitment, Community and Confidence.

Her book is an easy to read how-to that takes authors through the quagmires we get caught in: the ins and outs of scheduling, writing and promoting your work and even to how to submit manuscripts to publishers, competitions and prize committees. Plus, she deals with mindsets. Is the fact that you act like writing is just a hobby the thing that’s keeping you from making money? Navigating your own PR on social media and joining author-support groups (like Fremont Area Writers!) are also vital.

In the spirit of “writers-helping-writers,” Joan will also be offering attendees 30% off the cover price of her book You Can Be a Winning Writer.

This meeting is free and open to anyone who writes or enjoys helping writers. For the Zoom invitation, email scottfrombayside@yahoo.com Please arrive at the Zoom meeting by 1:50 p.m.

Writing coach Joan Gelfand
Saturday, Oct 23
2 p.m.
(Log in by 1:50 p.m.)
Via Zoom
For link, email scottfrombayside@yahoo.com
Las Positas College open enrollment for high school students
Submitted by Las Positas College

High schoolers looking to get ahead in their studies can take advantage of concurrent enrollment at Las Positas College (LPC), but they must submit all of their paperwork during the upcoming application window to be considered.

Between October 15 and December 3, interested 10th, 11th and 12th-grade students must submit all required documentation to apply for spring 2022 concurrent enrollment at LPC. After December 3, the window will close and no more applications will be accepted. Students who wish to participate must have permission from their parent or legal guardian and be recommended by their high school principal.

Students who are accepted are permitted to take no more than 11 units for the spring semester. High schoolers interested in taking English, math, and chemistry classes must take an assessment class before enrollment, subject to availability. Concurrently enrolled students are not permitted to take 100-level basic skills courses. Enrollment fees are waived for concurrently enrolled students, although other fees apply.

To learn more about spring 2022 concurrent enrollment, visit:

Make A Difference Day 2021
Submitted by City of Hayward

Hayward’s Keep Hayward Clean and Green Task Force is partnering with Cal State University East Bay to hold a special clean-up and beautification event in the Tennyson Corridor neighborhood of South Hayward from 8 a.m. to noon on Saturday, Oct. 23.

Make a Difference Day is an annual community service-focused event held the fourth Saturday in October. It provides an opportunity to meet neighbors, learn about money saving City green programs, and make a difference and earn community service hours pitching in to pick up, clean up and landscape.

Make a Difference Day beautification and clean-up event will be held and branch out from Weekes Park, 27182 Patrick Ave., at Tennyson Road and Patrick Avenue.

Online pre-registration is available (https://bit.ly/3FMoDcM) before 3 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 21. Same-day registration is available at the event starting at 8 a.m.

Adult supervision is not provided at this event by City of Hayward. All volunteers under the age of 18 must be accompanied by supervising adult.

For more information, check out the Make a Difference Day event page on the City of Hayward website: https://www.hayward-ca.gov/discover/events/october-2021-beautification-event

Make a Difference Day
Saturday, Oct 2021
8 a.m. – 12 noon
Weekes Park
27182 Patrick Ave., Hayward
(510) 881-7745
Pre-registration: https://bit.ly/3FMoDcM

Encore watercolor demonstration
Submitted by Olive Hyde Art Guild

Meghana Mitragotri’s September demonstration of watercolor tips and techniques was such fun that her audience has asked for a second demonstration. Please join this award-winning local artist for another virtual painting demonstration on Wednesday, October 27. For the main event Mitragotri will do a floral painting and as a bonus she will surprise the audience with a small autumn-themed painting.

Though Mitragotri has painted in many media, watercolor became her medium of choice because the water makes possible an array of shades, movement, textures and hues that bring beauty and serenity to a painting. Her work, sometimes realistic and sometimes impressionistic, is inspired by countryside landscapes, birds, plants and flowers. Join us to discover the autumn surprise Mitragotri has in store.

Mitragotri keeps busy painting, showing her work and doing demonstrations and workshops around the Bay Area. It has also been important to her to use her talents to give back to the community, especially now during the pandemic. Check out her website for examples of her work: www.daintlymade.com.

This demonstration is free and open to the public, so sign up, sit back, and enjoy watching Mitragotri paint. Register at https://olivehydeartguild.org/ and click on Meghana Mitragotri’s upcoming program and you'll be taken to a registration link. After you register, a zoom link will be sent to you.

Watercolorist Meghana Mitragotri
Wednesday, Oct 27
10 a.m. – 12 noon
Via Zoom
Register at https://olivehydeartguild.org/
(510) 791-4357

Spooktacular Musical Time!
Submitted by Music For Minors II

Join Music For Minors II's Music & Movement Time for kids on Wednesday, October 27 at 3:30 p.m. to enjoy a FREE spooktacular musical time.

Lots of Singing, Dancing and Rhythmic Movement!
Come in costume if you like!

Music for Minors II is a nonprofit music program keeping music in children’s lives and classrooms since 1988.

To register: https://tinyurl.com/vk53yrfc

Music and Movement Time
Wednesday, Oct 27
3:30 p.m.
(510) 733-1189

On the hunt for silent October
Submitted by Niles Essanay Silent Film Museum

We are starting to wind down our online content and hoping to ramp up our in-person programming within the next couple months. A lot is going on at our museum, much of it behind the scenes, even while dealing with the daily changes due to variants.

Our museum and store are open from 12 noon – 4 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays as they were before the pandemic but we are going to the “next level” adding a couple part time staff to help us run the place! We are recruiting for part time positions – Store Manager and Volunteer Manager (previous work experience in either role is important). If you are interested, email pr@nilesfilmmuseum.org.

For Saturday, October 23 we are presenting a special lineup of rarities from the Michael Aus Collection. (Piano accompaniment by David Drazin.)

Among The Counterfeiters (1921, Broadwell Productions)
This film stars Thomas Carrigan as Nick Carter, Master Detective. Nick Carter made his debut a full year before Sherlock Holmes was first published. With over 4,000 stories, 800-plus radio shows and numerous films, it was estimated that by 1920 over 30 million people worldwide had read at least one Nick Carter Mystery story. Filmed in 1920 and released early 1921, Among The Counterfeiters has Nick Carter infiltrating a counterfeiting ring to save the grandfather of a little girl who was accused of passing counterfeit money.

The Curse of Ravenscroft (1926)
This film stars Henry Ainley, a renowned British stage actor, as the Inscrutable Inspector Drew. Victor Drew is a British private investigator who must solve the mystery of who is killing off members of the Ravenscroft clan.

Links for both films will be available at 12:01 am on Saturday, October 23.

Niles Essanay Film Museum
Saturdays & Sundays
12 noon – 4 p.m.
37417 Niles Blvd., Fremont
(510) 494-1411
Peter and the Starcatcher
Submitted by Las Positas College Theater Arts

Las Positas College (LPC) Theater Arts Department presents the Tony Award-winning play “Peter and the Starcatcher” live on campus October 29-31 and November 5-7.

Tickets are available now for the play, based on the titular best-selling novels by Dave Barry and Ridley Pearson. It upends the well-known century-old story of a miserable orphan boy becoming Peter Pan, the fabled youngster who never grows up. From marauding pirates and jungle tyrants to unwilling comrades and unlikely heroes, “Peter and the Starcatcher” playfully explores the depths of greed and despair and the bonds of friendship, duty and love.

Director Titian Lish said she was “struck” by the “magical quality and sense of play” in “Peter and the Starcatcher.”

“It feels like a story of make-believe in a grandparent’s attic, full of fantasy and drama and absolute possibility,” Lish said.

Featuring 20 LPC student actors portraying more than 100 characters, “Peter and the Starcatcher” uses the limitless possibilities of imagination to bring the story to life. For the safety of the audience and each other, all members of the cast are fully vaccinated against COVID-19. Audiences will be socially distanced in assigned seating locations, and masks are required for all guests while indoors at LPC.

Peter and the Starcatcher
Friday, Oct 29 – Sunday, Nov 7
Fri/Sat: 8 p.m.
Sun: 2 p.m.
Barbara F. Mertes Center for the Arts
Indoor Main Stage
3000 Campus Hill Dr., Livermore
(925) 424-1127
Tickets: $10-20

Go pink and support the fight against breast cancer
By Rob Klindt

In recognition of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, numerous police departments in the greater East Bay are participating in the Pink Patch Project during the month of October. The project is a collaborative effort among hundreds of law enforcement agencies across the nation to boost awareness about the life-saving benefits of early detection and treatment in the fight against breast cancer.

Many officers and other department employees are wearing commemorative pink police patches reflecting their agency with departments making them available to the public for purchase. Local participating agencies:

• Fremont Police Department
2000 Stevenson Blvd., Fremont
6:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. weekdays
Patches cost $10, cash only; proceeds will also benefit the HERS Breast Cancer Foundation
Details: email fremontpolice@fremont.gov
(510) 790-6740

• Union City Police Department
Patches cost $10 and can be purchased online only
Details: Call Sgt. Jean Jimenez at (510) 471-1365 or send email to jeanj@unioncity.org

• Newark Police Department
Details: send an email to police@newark.or or call (510) 578-4237

• San Leandro Police Department
Details: call (510) 577-2740

• Hayward Police Department
300 W. Winton Ave., Hayward
9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. weekdays
Or: HPD North Resource Center, 22701 Main St., Hayward
10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. weekdays
Patches cost $10
Cash or check made payable to the Hayward Police Officer Association
Proceeds will also benefit HERS Breast Cancer Foundation
(510) 293-7000

East Bay Regional Park District Police Department
17930 Lake Chabot Road, Castro Valley
Details: call (510) 881-1833

More information about the Pink Patch Project, including participating law enforcement agencies, is available by visiting their website at www.pinkpatchproject.com.

Monthly comedy lab debuts in November
Submitted by Karin Richey
Photos provided by Plethos Productions

Plethos Comedy Lab is starting soon at the Castro Valley Marketplace on the first Thursday of every month. Starting Thursday, November 4 at 8 p.m., Lab 200 upstairs will be filled with laughter, food and fun as Plethos Productions brings a fresh lineup of up-and-coming stand-up comics.

Host Priya Guyadeen will be presenting an ever-changing lineup of Bay Area comics that will keep you laughing all night long. The Lab is the perfect venue for a fun night out, complete with comfy couch seating, drinks and snacks available from Night Owl Bar. For COVID safety, all performers are vaccinated, audience members will be seated in socially distanced groups and asked to wear masks. Early bird tickets are just $5 if you purchase by October 29 at Plethos.org.

Plethos Comedy Lab
Thursday, Nov 4
8 p.m.
Castro Valley Marketplace
Lab 200
3295 Castro Valley Blvd, Castro Valley
Early bird tickets: $5 (purchase by Oct 29)

Candlelight vigil for Domestic Violence Awareness Month
By Anushka Vasudev
Photos by Anushka Vasudev

On October 12th, 2021, Safe Alternatives to Violent Environments (SAVE) hosted a “Community Candlelight Vigil” to celebrate Domestic Violence Awareness Month (DVAM). SAVE has been involved in many efforts to curb domestic violence, which has especially been increasing during the pandemic. They maintain a hotline and other resources for survivors. As a part of the nationwide DVAM campaign #Every1KnowsSome1, SAVE hopes to do their part to spread awareness to end domestic violence.

The main goal of this event was to “bring this topic out of the shadows,” said event organizer Shayla Dixit. The candlelight vigil culminated in an event at Fremont City Hall with nearly 40 attendees, all donning purple, the symbol of DVAM. From survivors of domestic violence, advocates, police officers to Councilmembers and Fremont mayor Lily Mei, many people came to show their support. Some contributors include Shayla Dixit; Kate Hart, Director of Programs; and Jennifer Dow-Rowell, Executive Director. However, as they mentioned, this was an effort put together by all members of SAVE.

The event kicked off with guest speakers. Aisha Wahab, Hayward Councilmember; Moina Shaiq, Founder of Meet a Muslim and 2019 Alameda County Women’s Hall of Fame Awardee; and Lily Mei were among of them. They shared their own stories about domestic violence and urged the community to spread awareness. “We have to educate people about healthy boundaries, about respect for all people, about women’s rights, and most importantly, we have to speak up. We have to speak up because that individual can be our brother, sister, neighbor, or our cousin,” Wahab said. “It’s a long, long road that we have taken. It’s not easy. It’s an uphill battle. But we still must address these issues,” Shaiq added.

Afterward, there was an “open mic” segment for attendees to share their experiences as survivors and advocates. One speaker shared that even if someone doesn’t know a victim of domestic violence, “knowing to ask questions, knowing to observe, knowing to not look downwards, but look upwards, and to really be a part of the community [they] are a part of” is really important. Speakers also shared how their experiences have educated them on this topic. “I used to think [domestic violence] is all about physical abuse,” one speaker said, “But I realized it’s way more than that. It really touches your soul.” The event concluded with a singing performance with an affirmation that emphasized how everyone’s presence, support, and voices matter.

The SAVE candlelight vigil paid a tribute to those who aren’t here today, those who are survivors, those who know survivors and victims, and all those who are fighting to end domestic violence. This vigil reminded people that domestic violence can happen to anybody, and everybody should do at least #1Thing to end domestic violence in their community.

(510) 574-2250
Hotline: (510) 794-6055

International Walk & Roll to School Day
Submitted by Abdul Jabbar Mohammed MajTube

International Walk & Roll to School Day was held at G. M. Walters Middle School with Fremont Mayor Lily Mei, along with teachers and students at the school. This event was a great success. Many thanks to Fremont Police Department and Crossing Guards for keeping everyone safe.

International Walk to School Day is a global event that involves communities from more than 40 countries walking and biking to school on the same day. It began in 1997 as a one-day event each October. Today, thousands of schools across America – from all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico – participate.

Alameda County Fire Department Log
Submitted by ACFD

Sunday, October 10
• Evening shift crews responded to a report about smoke and flames at a residence on Early Rivers Place in Union City. Upon arrival, a heavy column of black smoke with 30-foot flames could be seen. A household shed was fully engulfed in flames and threatening the main house and a neighbor’s property. Crews quickly knocked down the fire with minimal damage to other structures. No injuries were reported.

Tuesday, October 12
• At 6:19 p.m. crews responded to a report about a commercial structure fire on Williams Street in San Leandro. While enroute, thick plumes of smoke filled the sky and the call was upgraded to a confirmed structure fire including a first alarm response plus one additional crew. Upon arrival, crews found debris and vegetation on fire threatening the structure. They quickly extinguished the flames; no injuries were reported.
BART Police Log
Submitted by Les Mensinger and BART PD

Saturday, October 9
• At 8:44 p.m. a person identified by police as Chelsie Erkel, 29, of Windsor was arrested at Bay Fair station in San Leandro on a $25,000 warrant charging vehicle theft and DUI. Erkel was booked into Santa Rita Jail.

Monday, October 11
• At 5:22 p.m. a man identified by police as Edgar Lopez, of San Jose was arrested at Hayward station on suspicion of public intoxication, resisting an officer and battery on a police officer. He was booked into Santa Rita Jail.

• At 9:22 p.m. a man identified by police as Jeffrey Brewer, 33, of Hayward was arrested at Hayward station on suspicion of possessing drug paraphernalia and resisting arrest. He was booked into Santa Rita Jail.

Tuesday, October 12
• At 1:42 p.m. a man identified by police as Michael Nardoni, 32, of Fremont was detained at Fremont station on suspicion of vandalism. A record check showed three outstanding felony and one misdemeanor warrants. He was arrested and booked into Santa Rita Jail.

• At 6:39 p.m. a person identified by police as Ailyne Garcia, 23, of Hayward was arrested at Hayward station on suspicion of fare evasion and on a $10,000 warrant from Alameda County. Garcia was booked into Santa Rita Jail.

• At 7:33 p.m. a man identified by police as Mitchell Hofman, 32, of San Francisco was arrested at Milpitas station on suspicion of possessing a narcotic and drug paraphernalia, and on three outstanding warrants totaling $30,000. He was booked into Santa Clara County Main Jail.

Thursday, October 14
• At 10:50 a.m. a man identified by police as Markel Thomas, 33, of Antioch was arrested at Milpitas station on suspicion of fare evasion and resisting arrest. He was booked into Santa Clara County Main Jail.
Arrest made in catalytic converter theft case
Submitted by Yanneth Contrada, Fremont PD

A 34-year-old man believed to be connected to an attempted catalytic converter theft from a truck in Fremont in early September was arrested on September 21 by detectives from the Fremont Police Department.

The attempted theft occurred at about 10:50 a.m. September 3 when two suspects were interrupted as they attempted to steal a catalytic converter from a work truck near Havasu Street and Choctaw Drive in the Warm Springs area. A victim spotted the suspects and armed himself with a crowbar and struck one of the suspects with it. Both suspects fled the scene in a vehicle, however one of the occupants later exited the vehicle and fired multiple rounds at the victim and his co-workers.

Major Crimes Task Force (MCTF) detectives located the unoccupied suspect vehicle several hours later. A record check showed the vehicle was reported stolen out of San Francisco and was recovered several days later. During the investigation, detectives identified Rufus Barker, 34, of Oakland as the shooting suspect.

A record check showed Barker was on felony probation for being a felon in possession of a firearm. Records also showed prior arrests for assault with a firearm, carrying a loaded firearm, possession of a firearm near a school campus, possession of stolen vehicles, possession of a controlled substance for sales, violation of a court order, and drug possession.

An arrest warrant was obtained and, on September 21, Gun Violence Reduction Team detectives located Barker at a Motel 6 in Hayward as he arrived in another stolen vehicle. He was arrested without incident and detectives recovered a loaded, non-serialized handgun inside the stolen vehicle.

Barker was booked at Santa Rita Jail and arraigned on September 23. He was charged with being a felon in possession of a firearm, carrying a concealed/loaded firearm in a vehicle, possession of two stolen vehicles, and possession of a controlled substance while armed. On September 29 Barker posted bail and was released from custody. A pre-trial hearing for Barker is set for December 9 at the East County Hall of Justice in Dublin.

Hayward Police Log
Submitted by Hayward PD

Sunday, October 3
• At 3:14 a.m. officers responded to a report about a shooting near the 500 block of Panjon St. Upon arrival, officers found evidence of a shooting, but did not find any victims or suspects.

• At 8:13 a.m. officers responded to a report about a robbery near the 100 block of W. Tennyson Road. Officers arrived on the scene and located a female suspect and took her into custody.

Tuesday, October 5
• At 11:52 p.m. officers located an occupied stolen vehicle near the 2000 block of Whipple Road and made a traffic enforcement stop. The occupant was taken into custody.

Thursday, October 7
• At 2:26 a.m. officers spotted an occupied vehicle near the 400 block of W. Tennyson Road with license plates that did not match the vehicle’s make and model. A record check showed the vehicle had been reported stolen. The driver was taken into custody.

Friday, October 8
• At 8:44 p.m. officers responded to report about a shooting near the 700 block of Sycamore Ave. Upon arrival, officers found evidence of a shooting, but did not find any victims or suspects.
Milpitas Police Log
Submitted by Milpitas PD

Wednesday, October 13
• At about 8:13 a.m. police and fire department crews responded to a report from CHP that a father found his 15-year-old son dead at his Milpitas home. No foul play was involved and the incident is being treated as a suicide. Police are reminding residents that if someone they know is in crisis, help is available 24-hours a day by calling the County Suicide Crisis Hotline at 1-(866) 278-4204, or by texting RENEW to 741741. Services are free and confidential.
Newark Police Log
Submitted by Newark PD

Saturday, October 2
• At 12:00 p.m. officers responded to a report of a home security camera being stolen in the area of Peachtree and Thornton avenues. The victim, a 59-year-old Newark man, armed himself with a firearm and located the person he believed to have stolen the camera and brandished the weapon at them. Further investigation showed the theft was unfounded. The victim was arrested on suspicion of exhibiting a firearm and was booked at Santa Rita Jail.

Monday, October 4
• At 10:55 a.m. Officer Quinonez responded to a person requesting police assistance in the 5000 block of Abington Dr. Upon arrival Quinonez contacted a 23-year-old woman. A record check showed she had an outstanding warrant. She was arrested and booked at Santa Rita Jail.
• At 12:50 p.m. officers responded to a report of a theft in the 35000 block of Newark Blvd. When they arrived, officers contacted and later arrested a 68-year-old man from East Palo Alto on suspicion of shoplifting. He was issued a citation and released.

Tuesday, October 5
• At 8:25 a.m. Officer Kapu investigated a report about a vehicle stolen in the 35000 block of Dumbarton Court. At about 4:00 p.m. officers located the unoccupied vehicle in the 5000 block of Central Ave.

Wednesday, October 6
• At 8:28 a.m. Traffic Officer Piquette contacted a 34-year-old man riding a dirt bike without a helmet in the area of Smith Avenue and Cedar Boulevard. A record check showed the man had an outstanding warrant. He was arrested and booked at Santa Rita Jail.

Friday, October 8
• At 9:37 a.m. Officer Johnson responded to an alarm call in the 37000 block of Filbert St. Upon arrival officers contacted a 36-year-old Tracy man who was pretending to work on his vehicle. A record check showed the vehicle was displaying a stolen license plate. Johnson arrested the man on suspicion of displaying unlawful vehicle registration, receiving stolen property, possession of burglary tools, possession of controlled substances, possession of drug paraphernalia and obtaining identity theft information. The man was cited and released; the vehicle was towed away.

• At 11:55 a.m. Officer Arroyo responded to a report of vandalism in the 6000 block of NewPark Mall Road. Upon arrival, Arroyo contacted and later arrested a 26-year-old Fremont man on suspicion of felony vandalism. He was booked at Santa Rita Jail.

Saturday, October 9
• During a 1:00 p.m. security check Officer Rivera spotted two suspicious vehicles parked in the 7000 block of Stevenson Blvd. Rivera contacted a 31-year-old man nearby and eventually arrested him on suspicion of possessing burglary tools. The man was cited and released.

College program provides hope to inmates
Article and photo submitted by Tina Vossugh

The Ohlone Community College District has recently joined Santa Clara County Sherriff’s Office Community College Collaborative, a consortium of community colleges coming together to provide career pathways to incarcerated people at Elmwood Correctional Facility in Milpitas.

Led by the vision of Elmwood’s Inmate Rehabilitation Manager Patrick Marshall, Ph.D. and Lieutenant Gurpreet Gill, the college began offering courses in digital filmmaking from late spring through the summer and is the first community college in the Bay Area to provide college-level courses at the jail. Ohlone’s Digital Arts and Interactive Design Assistant Professor, Isabel Reichert, taught the first cohort of incarcerated students. For most, her course provided them with their first college experience.

The goal of the pathways program is to provide incarcerated people with a level of hope and service through practical and applicable coursework that allows them to go back into the community, put their best foot forward and to help stop recidivism — the cycle of repeat offenses landing people back in the jail system.

“This is the first time we’re implementing these pathways for individuals in custody,” Marshall said. “They’re registering for college courses that they can continue once they’re released and out of custody and that is something they never had, never thought of, or had the opportunity to do before. They’re in college while in custody and if we get them to make a different choice, recidivism decreases.”

The collaboration between Elmwood’s staff, the college’s administration and faculty members, like Reichert, have so far yielded tremendous success. The response from students is overwhelmingly positive. Most are first-generation college students unaware of the educational opportunities that exist for them and unsuspecting of their own academic potential. Some students from the first cohort have already transitioned into the community college system, enrolling in more coursework and seeking a better life for themselves and their families.

“I had been thinking about doing a college collaboration and suddenly Ohlone appeared. It felt like a blessing,” Marshall said. “My colleague Lieutenant Gill was fully supportive from the beginning, and he said, ‘man that’s my alma mater, I love Ohlone, we gotta’ make it happen.’”

The good vibes were mutual as Reichert also echoed an immediate connection with the group and their discovery of a unified vision for the goal of the program. The first cohort of students consisted of 12 women and eight men. Since the facility is segregated by gender, Reichert taught classes twice weekly instructing male inmates in the morning and females in the afternoon.

In Reichert’s video editing course, students learned interviewing skills, visual storytelling, shooting and composition techniques, pre-and post-production artistry, and the ins and outs of editing digital video. For their final project, the students produced mini documentaries. The women in the facility interviewed Assistant Sheriff Dalia Rodriguez about her historic role as the first female minority AS in the history of Santa Clara County. The men interviewed Dr. Marshall and Lieutenant Gill — providing them an opportunity to ask questions, provide suggestions for classes and get to know the men who run the program.

Upon completion of the course, Elmwood’s staff and Reichert held a certificate ceremony which included a showcase for the work developed in the class. Course offerings from Ohlone will continue with plans for offerings in web design, video editing, and game design. The idea is to expose inmates to the concepts of digital technologies through several fast-track four-week class offerings in order to glean interest in the field and to encourage students to see a future in design and technology.

In 2011, California voters passed Assembly Bill 109, which diverted those sentenced to less serious convictions from state prisons to county jails. Since then, jail incarcerations have become notably longer — three to five years at the county level. As a result, facilities like Elmwood have changed their approach to delivering on-site rehabilitation programs to people in custody with the goal of providing incarcerated people education, tools, resources and opportunities for a better life after their release. Elmwood is working with a college consortium to transition discharged individuals and help them register for additional courses, allowing them to seamlessly continue their higher education at a community college.

“Ohlone has set the bar for how we are working and our inmate population. In fact, Isabel’s class has a waiting list,” Marshall said. “We were able to really get a lot of buy-in and interest. The pathway we are creating with Ohlone College is something that will last the test of time at the Elmwood facility.”
San Leandro Police Log
Submitted by San Leandro PD

Sunday, October 10
• At about 9:30 p.m. police received calls about the sound of gunfire on the 500 block of Victoria Court. Arriving officers found evidence of a shooting, including nearly 40 shell casings. An investigation showed that an argument between two groups of people escalated into seven people producing firearms and shooting at one another. Two people were injured and took themselves to a hospital. Police described their injuries as life-threatening. A police investigation is continuing; anyone with information is asked to call Detective Sampson at (510) 577-3244.

Have unneeded prescription drugs? Here’s where to take them
By Rob Klindt

On Saturday, October 23, numerous police departments and other agencies in the greater East Bay and South Bay area will be partnering with the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) on its 20th National Prescription Drug Take Back Day. The event is designed to give the public an opportunity to prevent pill abuse and theft by ridding their homes of potentially dangerous expired, unused, and unwanted prescription drugs.

People are encouraged to bring their unneeded medications for disposal to their closest participating agency between 10:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. Most prescription drugs, including pills and patches are eligible for the event, however needles, sharps and syringes cannot be accepted. The service is free and anonymous, with no questions asked.

This initiative addresses a vital public safety and public health issue. Medicines that languish in home cabinets are highly susceptible to diversion, misuse, and abuse. Rates of prescription drug abuse in the U.S. are alarmingly high, as are the number of accidental poisonings and overdoses due to these drugs.

More than 4,400 law enforcement agencies across the nation participated in the last Prescription Drug Take Back Day held in April, 2021. For more information, visit the DEA Diversion website at www.deadiversion.usdoj.gov/

Here are local agencies and addresses where people can drop off unneeded or expired prescription drugs from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 23:

• Alameda County District Attorney’s Office
Fremont Hall of Justice, 39439 Paseo Padre Parkway, Fremont
(510) 795-2500

• Alameda County Sheriff’s Office
Eden Township Substation, 15001 Foothill Blvd. San Leandro
(510) 667-7721

• Fremont Police Department
(In partnership with Fremont Elks Lodge and Haller’s Pharmacy)
Elks Lodge, 38991 Farwell Drive, Fremont
(510) 790-6800

• Hayward Police Department
300 W. Winton Ave., Hayward
(510) 293-7000

• Milpitas Police Department
1275 N. Milpitas Blvd., Milpitas
(408) 586-2400
Grant will help police boost traffic safety measures
Submitted by Sgt. Brian Simon

A new $70,000 grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety (OTS) is being used by the Newark Police Department (NPD) to roll out a police traffic services program to deter dangerous and illegal driving behaviors that increase the risk of crashes in the community.

“Impairment, speeding and other dangerous driving behaviors jeopardize the safety of other people on the road,” NPD Captain Chomnan Loth said. “This funding allows us to provide necessary traffic enforcement measures with the goal of reducing serious injury and fatal crashes on our roads.”

The grant will pay for additional enforcement measures, including:
• DUI checkpoints and patrols specifically focused on suspected impaired drivers.
• Enforcement operations focused on suspected distracted drivers in violation of California’s hands-free cell phone law.
• Bicycle and pedestrian safety enforcement operations focused on driver behaviors that put vulnerable road users at risk.
• Enforcement operations focused on top violations that cause crashes: speeding, failure to yield, stop sign and/or red-light running, and improper turning or lane changes.
• Community education presentations on traffic safety issues such as distracted driving, DUI, speeding, and bicycle and pedestrian safety.
• Collaborative enforcement efforts with neighboring agencies.
• Officer training and/or recertification: Standard Field Sobriety Test (SFST), Advanced Roadside Impaired Driving Enforcement (ARIDE) and Drug Recognition Expert (DRE).

Funding for the grant program, which will run through September 2022, is provided by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety, through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Union City Police Log
Submitted by Union City PD

Sunday, September 19
• At about 1:50 a.m. officers responded to a call about an assault in the 33000 block of Mission Blvd. The caller told police an intoxicated female partygoer was asked to leave, but returned with a gun and pistol-whipped one victim, breaking her nose and then punched another victim. After a third person was able to take the gun from the suspect, she then stabbed another person in the neck with an unknown object. Officers found the suspect in front of the house and arrested her on suspicion of attempted murder.

Saturday, September 25
• At about 8:30 a.m. officers responded to a report about a shooting in the 31300 block of Santa Cruz Way. The victim discovered bullet holes in their vehicle and their home. While investigating, officers found two other houses that were hit by gunfire. No injuries were reported.

Sunday, September 26
• At about 3:00 a.m. officers responded to an armed robbery report in the 900 block of Whipple Road. The victim, who works as a security guard, told police he approached a vehicle in the parking lot of his workplace. The suspect exited the car, pointed a firearm at the victim's face, and threatened to shoot him. The suspect then forced the victim to remove his clothes and hand over his wallet and keys. The suspect then fled in his vehicle and was not found by police.

Fremont Rush supports Pink Fund
Article and photos by Niamh Lambert

October marks the beginning of Rush Soccer’s ongoing collaboration with The Pink Fund. The Pink Fund is a non-profit organization that provides 90-day non-medical cost-of-living expenses to breast cancer patients in active treatment, so they can focus on healing and managing daily life.

This year, Fremont Rush 2009 girls’ team was asked to participate in the campaign. Their video was released on the National Rush Soccer platform, which reaches 70,000 players and families. When presented with the opportunity, Coach Gerardo jumped on it. As a mentor at Fremont Rush, he was honored to have his team be part of such a unique project. “The opportunity to have my 2009 girls represent such an important cause was an honor,” said Gerardo. In our family, we’ve had loved ones who were diagnosed, so being asked to take this project really hit home.”

For the girls, that sense of dignity and humility permeated throughout the team, just as it did for Coach Gerardo. “It really aids in the transmission of knowledge, which is extremely beneficial to the club”, said Daniela Zarate (Fremont Rush 2009 Girls). “For our team personally, it gives us the chance to give back. We wanted everyone who is unfortunately affected to know we support them and want the best for them.”

While excitement buzzed throughout the team, nerves were also high. This opportunity didn’t just represent them but the entire Rush Nation. Gerardo says, “When I initially told the girls they’d have this opportunity, I believe they were both excited and a little afraid. They had read their lines and practiced for days, so when the big day arrived, they were ready to go and nailed it.”

“I was excited, but the day before I was freaking out because so many people were going to see it,” said Sakaki Itoi (Fremont Rush 2009 Girls). “I just wanted to make sure we did a good job representing The Pink Fund because they’re such an important organization.”

This year, players are sporting pink Capelli x Pink Fund sweatbands on their wrists at games and practices. They’re an excellent way for the club to represent the cause and spread awareness. “I think the wristbands are a great, gender-neutral, way for players to show their support. It brings awareness to the cause and shows that anyone can wear pink,” said Shanaya Chatterjee (Fremont Rush 2009 Girls).

You can check out the 2009 girls Pink Fund video on the Rush Soccer Website, YouTube and Instagram.


Table Tennis legacy continues
By April Ramos

Table Tennis is not usually considered a mainstream sport in the U.S., but at the India Community Center (ICC) in Milpitas, table tennis has focused attention of players from all over the world. What started as two tables in a lobby has turned into an auditorium full of tables and 521 dedicated members.

Rajul Sheth was working night shifts at a gas station only a block away from what would become the ICC Table Tennis facility where he is currently Executive Director. After seeing a regular customer at the gas pump with a table tennis jersey, Sheth asked where he could find a place to play table tennis. After getting involved with local clubs and winning several open table tennis tournaments, Sheth was approached by a man looking for a table tennis coach for the local ICC recreation area. Sheth agreed and began coaching a few kids in the lobby of the ICC building.

Following the success of Sheth’s players, ICC began to expand and invest in its table tennis program. Realizing that even a Monday to Friday training schedule was not enough to keep up with the demands of table tennis enthusiasts, the club was moved to its current facility. The new location includes a gymnasium split into recreational play and competitive training, 27 tables, a study area, lunch room, merchandise area, and lobby.

ICC Table Tennis has produced and welcomed athletes and coaches who have competed in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, and Tokyo, Japan Olympics. The club has also seen 13 members qualify for the U.S. National Table Tennis team. One U.S. National Team athlete is 15-year-old Ved Sheth, Rajul Sheth’s son.

Promptly following in his father’s footsteps, Ved, a junior at Kennedy High School (Fremont), attended his first table tennis camp at age five. Shortly after, Ved began visiting the facility on a daily basis. “It was a really nice community, and there were a bunch of people my age as well,” Ved recalls.

Although he’s had a large table tennis community all around him, Ved is aware of misconceptions of the sport. “Everyone thinks that you don’t need to do any physical fitness to play table tennis. That’s not true. Table Tennis is one of the fastest sports in the world.” Each member of the competitive ICC table tennis team has a file of their workout regimes, strengths and weakness, and training schedules.

Ved trains Monday to Sunday for an average of 11 hours a week. He spends hours perfecting his technique, improving his cardio and developing strength to overpower his opponents. This is especially challenging for Ved because his main event is the Under 19 category. This means he is competing against players up to four years older than him.

Table tennis not only brings him physical challenges, but mental hurdles as well. Switching from opponent to opponent means learning a new player’s strengths and weaknesses. “You might play one guy who has a really good forehand, so you think, ‘I should give to his backhand.’ If you win, then next round you might play someone who has a really good backhand. So, you have to always adjust because everyone has a different playing style.”

One of Ved’s proudest moments is having the opportunity to travel to a tournament in El Salvador and winning four medals. Although proud of his medals, he is also proud of achievements that many would not notice. For example, sacrificing matches for the sake of perfecting his weaker techniques.

“I went to a local ratings tournament and I didn’t play as good as I normally have. Everyone else thought, ‘What happened why’d he do that,’ but personally I think, ‘Okay I lost this but in the future, if I want to play well, then I have to first fix my technique. I have to do something that I am not used to doing, and then, maybe after two months, I fix it, then I can play better than I was before.”

After high school, Ved plans to attend a college with a table tennis team, such as UC Berkeley or NYU. “If table tennis becomes a much more known sport, if can make a living out of it, then I think I would definitely go for it, because I love table tennis.”

For more information about ICC table tennis visit: www.indiacc.org



“Give me a lever long enough and a fulcrum on which to place it, and I shall move the world.“

Leverage in practice and as a concept is nothing new. Archimedes, a Greek mathematician, engineer and inventor (287 BC – 212 BC), expounded on the use of levers with this extreme example of its power. The key to effective use of levers is placement of a support and pivot point, called a “fulcrum.”

Examples of levers using fulcrums are all around us: playground see-saws, car jacks, claw hammers, crowbars, scissors and shears, pliers, and many more. Variations include such common tools as bottle openers, staplers, car door handles and hinged doors. The same principle can be applied to golf clubs, tennis rackets, baseball bats, brooms and the mechanics of your arm.

Besides physical and mechanical attributes, leverage can also relate to the use of resources to maximum advantage and influence. Just as the value and advantage of mechanical leverage allows force to be multiplied depending on the length of a lever and placement of the fulcrum, so can the strength and influence of an argument/proposal or investment depend on how much and where pressure is applied.

Currently, our cities are under pressure by state and regional authorities to produce “affordable” housing for middle- and low-income wage earners. Since the median income in both Alameda, Santa Clara and surrounding counties is over $100,000, many families are affected by exorbitant housing prices and other costs associated with them.

The term, Median (or middle value), can be used to signify the middle of a set of numbers, not the value of those numbers. For example, if the set of numbers is: 10, 11, 12, 55, 100, 200 and 500, the median would be at 55 since half of the series is above that number and half below. This, however, does not reflect the disparity of values above and below the line. In my example, the values below the median equal 33 while those above the median equal 800! The same can be said for earnings when using median measurements and the effect of housing prices catering to high income individuals and families.

In order to counter an obvious inequity of income and cost of living in our area, government agencies have stepped in to try to provide relief for those at or below median incomes. Profitable development is, of course, aimed at high income individuals or those with value stored in existing homes. There is little or no incentive (or profit) to build low-income housing without subsidies. In order to provide such support, governmental agencies charge fees and give tax credits to encourage construction of affordable rental or for-sale housing. One goal of housing moderate and low-income tenants or owners is to integrate people of all income levels and avoid isolating this population into “projects.” Integration requires balance so developers are assured a positive result. The lever of profit and affordable housing at either end depends on placement of a fulcrum of fees, incentives and zoning. It is that balance that our cities are grappling with at this time. In a recent meeting of the Fremont City Council, placement of a fee structure (fulcrum) was discussed with the goal of enticing builders to include affordable housing in their plans rather than simply paying in-lieu fees to subsidize an alternate development.

Since each time a housing complex is built, less land becomes available for other construction, the pool of available space is shrinking even as the coffers grow though in-lieu contributions. Housing costs are rising as well, so the question becomes moot at some point when a housing fund is faced with shrinking opportunities and rising costs; it foreshadows a losing game.

Housing focused only on the wealthy has been lucrative, but has spread its effects to every facet of life in our communities. The question our elected leaders are facing is… How far can the fulcrum of fees and restraints be moved to tip the balance in favor of moderate- and low-income residents?

In the 1971 economic crisis in Seattle, Washington, a billboard sponsored by real-estate agents Bob McDonald and Jim Youngren, asked its inhabitants… “Will the last person leaving SEATTLE — Turn out the lights.” If housing and attendant cost-of-living continue to escalate in our area, who will be left to finally turn out the lights?