A Cold, Wet and Relatively Uneventful Halloween Downtown
Halloween brought a steady cold rain to downtown, beginning around 8PM and lasting through the night. It certainly had an impact on the traditional Halloween parade of families, freaks, and spectators that usually take over Pacific Avenue. The fact that it fell on a Monday night probably didn’t help either, since I know a lot of folks spent their weekends at various parties and by Monday probably had “Halloweenangover” (especially those that had to work Tuesday morning). I didn’t hear the usual CHP chopper flying over my house this year. I didn’t get a lot of reports or hear a lot of chatter from the usual sources, so I’m guessing it went off well. Nothing suppresses bad behavior in public like a cold hard rain.
According to SCPD reports, the downtown crowd was approximately 50 percent smaller than last year. Law enforcement assigned to downtown Monday logged 20 arrests, six of which were for public intoxication. In addition, 40 citations were issued, 24 of which were for triple fine violations. Of the triple fine citations, 21 were for open containers of alcohol.
UCSC Student Critically Injured in Hit and Run Accident Near River Street
Last Saturday night around 2AM, a UCSC student was walking home from a party and attempted to cross Highway 1 between the light at River street and the light at Mission. As she attempted to cross near the railroad tracks, she was hit by a car described as a 2010-2011 silver Honda CRV, which fled the scene without stopping. The victim was transported to a Bay Area trauma center in critical condition. Investigators are seeking the public’s help and to be on the lookout for a similar vehicle with damage to the passenger side front bumper. So many things wrong with this picture. Why on earth was a young female from UCSC, apparently alone, walking in one of the most dangerous, bum infested areas of Santa Cruz at 2AM? Or maybe the bigger question is, who would let her?
Knife Fight at 1010 Pacific Avenue
Wednesday night around 6PM, a call came in about 2 females fighting with weapons, apparently one of them with a knife, in an apartment at 1010 Pacific. The fight was visible from someone at Kianti’s across the street at the corner of Cathcart and Pacific, who could see it through the windows. When PD finally figured out which apartment it was, they located 2 women inside, who claimed that nothing happened. Sounds to me like something happened. People don’t just witness and call in knife fights for the hell of it. They should have arrested both of them. And sent them a bill.
Car Flips on Beach Street in Front of the Boardwalk Arcade
Sunday night around 5:30PM, a car flipped over on Beach street right in front of the Boardwalk. The rollover actually took place at the intersection of First and Cliff streets. Reports were that the car contained 2 adults and 2 children, and the adults were able to crawl out of the vehicle but the 2 children, one of them an infant, had to wait for fire and rescue to help extract them from the vehicle. Sounds like everyone made it out ok.
Car Flips on Ocean and Broadway and Snarls Traffic
Wednesday morning around 11AM, traffic was a serious mess around the area of Ocean and Broadway. I should know. I was stuck in it. Apparently a truck tried to turn left onto Ocean from Broadway, probably coming down the hill too fast trying to make it through the light, and ended up on it’s side in front of the 7/11. I have no idea why but SCPD closed off all kinds of blocks for this. They detoured traffic through the beach flats on Barson to the point where trying to get to the east side of Santa Cruz was hopeless.
Knife Fight at Day’s Market on Seabright
Tuesday night around 10PM, a report came in about 2 males fighting in the parking lot of Day’s Market on Seabright and Murray, with one of them brandishing a knife in the fight. SCPD showed up quickly with multiple units but the 2 guys fighting were gone before they arrived.
Sunday Morning Assault on Ocean Street
Reports came in that the manager of the National 9 motel on Ocean street was physically assaulted Sunday morning around 10:30AM when he tried to evict one of the guests who was apparently high on drugs. Skid row on Ocean Street! The National 9 isn’t exactly what I’d call a “top shelf” option, but it’s not terrible. What is terrible is the location it’s stuck in, and that’s really no fault of it’s own here. The city seems to have pretty much given up on this area of Upper Ocean where 17 dumps traffic. The “gateway” to Santa Cruz is the real life version of The Walking Dead on any given day. Dunkin Donuts and a new boutique burger shop aren’t gonna fix this. The city needs to clamp down and clean up this area. Where there’s a will there’s a way. And you can’t tell me the local businesses in these few blocks wouldn’t appreciate a cleaner and safer area. Step up city of Santa Cruz. Talk is cheap. I’ve been hearing about a revitalized Ocean street corridor for years. All I see is the same old, self perpetuated neglect from the city.
Overdose at Sunset Inn on Mission
A call came in around 9:45PM on Sunday night of an overdose at the Sunset Inn on Mission. The victim was reportedly turning purple before fire and rescue arrived. I’m not sure why I even bother reporting these anymore. They seem to happen every day and night.
Stolen Car Crashes on Branciforte
Reports came in around 10PM Sunday night that a car reportedly crashed on Branciforte near Market street. The car ran up a curb and blew out at least one tire before the driver left the car and fled the scene. The car was later determined to be stolen (and wasn’t drivable). I guess that explains the fled the scene part. The driver was reportedly last seen leaving the area on a skateboard. Good thing he had that backup plan for a quick getaway, although a skateboarder in the area riding in the pouring rain is pretty conspicuous. Speaking of conspicuous skateboarders….
Skateboarder Hit by Car on Front Street
Sunday night around 7:30PM in the pouring rain, a skateboarder was apparently hit by a car in a hit and run accident on Front street near Cathcart. The victim was described as conscious and breathing when fire and rescue arrived, but had facial trauma and injuries. The car, only described as a “light blue sedan” was last seen driving towards the CVS. Sounds as if he might have been hit by the passenger side mirror (which was apparently missing or broken). The victim was apparently uncooperative with SCPD, and seemed to be arrested (after going to Dominican for his injuries). Not sure why the victim was arrested, or if they found the car in question.
Guardian Angels Already Making a Difference Downtown
The Guardian Angels just rolled into to town to work with the community on setting up a local chapter of their group (at the request of members of the community), and Friday night while on a walking patrol of Pacific Avenue, they witnessed a hit and run accident between a motorcycle and a van. The van attempted to leave the scene and was detained by the Guardian Angels, who chased after and cornered the driver in a parking lot at Walgreens. SCPD arrived soon after and thanked the Guardian Angels for their efforts.
They held a meeting last Saturday morning to introduce themselves to the community. I heard from someone who attended and was pretty impressed with the group’s presentation.
Goodbye Lulu’s at the Octagon
If you haven’t had a chance to grab a final cup of coffee yet, you’re too late. Lulu’s at the Octogon on Abbott Square is (like the namesake parent next door) HISTORY. It’s too bad. It was a hidden gem. I loved the outdoor seating. Where’s Bratton gonna loiter all day now? I used to see all the local progressives hanging out here, Ryan Coonerty. Fred Keeley. Nina Simon (obviously). It was a scene to be seen in the afternoons. Abbott Square is a hidden gem but that’s about to change too. The MAH has all these big plans to “upgrade” it. Personally, I thought it was fine the way it was. The businesses the MAH booted from the square over a year ago have been replaced by NOTHING. The Lulu’s on Pacific is still open and plans to stay that way. Word is the MAH has plans for the Octagon, but I have no idea what they are. It’s doubtful that any kind of restaurant or food service business will end up there, as the building itself doesn’t offer any kind of cooking ventilation (and it has no windows). I could see it being used for “pop-ups” and for special events.
Goodbye Union Grove Music on Pacific
Another local institution is calling it quits. Union Grove Music on Pacific Avenue, located next to the Catalyst, is closing. They will be having liquidation sales beginning November 3rd. Owners Theresa and Richard Gellis have decided to retire. 44 years they’ve been servicing Santa Cruz musicians (and visiting acts from the Catalyst next door). Brick and mortar music stores are a tough business right now. Online businesses like Musician’s Friend do huge business at discounted prices, and Guitar Center is like the Walmart of brick and mortar music stores. Thankfully, we still have the world class Sylvan Music on Mission, one of the finest acoustic instrument shops in the country right here in Santa Cruz. Happy retirement to Theresa and Richard, and thanks for putting up with listening to bad versions of Stairway to Heaven for 44 years. You’ve earned it!
Fire Burns Home on Modesto Avenue
Thursday morning around 2AM, reports came in that a residence was on fire on Modesto avenue near Swift street. Apparently there was a fire in the yard that wasn’t properly extinguished which ended up spreading to a nearby wood pile next to an attached garage, which also caught fire. There were also a number of paint cans and other combustable materials which exploded when the garage caught fire. 3 people living in the home were able to evacuate safely.
City Contemplates Destroying Depot Park
In yet another example of the city trying to show how completely dysfunctional it really is, the city recently heard from a consultant they hired FROM OUTSIDE THE CITY to enlighten us all on the “feasibility study” they did on the best new location for a future Warriors arena. What we got was exactly what I’d expect FROM A CONSULTANT BASED IN SALT LAKE CITY, UTAH. Seriously? We can’t find anyone closer than Utah to do this? Even a firm in San Jose or San Francisco is going to better understand the “nuances” of economic development of this scale in Santa Cruz. This isn’t some turnkey template you just apply here. SALT LAKE CITY. When you consider their suggestions, LITERALLY consider the source. As in where do they live and do they understand how dysfunctional we are?
So back to Depot Park. It’s a gem. In the 15 or so years I’ve lived here, there are VERY FEW successful economic development projects that have taken place locally. I’d argue there’s a total of 2. Kaiser Arena and Depot Park. And this outside consultant wants the city to basically kill one to rebuild the other on top of it. DYSFUNCTION JUNCTION. I can’t believe it’s even being considered or got this far in the “preliminary findings”. Why did the city, or whoever oversees this project, let it get this far with the consultant? It sounds like this discussion should have taken place BEFORE the consultant decided to make it a “Top 2” choice (only to see it shot down by EVERYONE on the council). The city just spent a HUGE AMOUNT OF MONEY rebuilding the soccer field and replacing the artificial turf. This was after they closed the field for OVER A YEAR, forcing local schools and youth recreational leagues to find alternatives.
Remember how the city just spent 1.4 MILLION DOLLARS ON A BRAND NEW FIELD HERE! Should we just laugh and write off 1.4 MILLION DOLLARS HERE?
More in the Senile here.
The Santa Cruz Warriors are Back!
The Santa Cruz Warriors will play one home preseason game against the Reno Bighorns and the Salt Lake City Stars (formerly the Idaho Stampede) in a three-way preseason game on Sunday, Nov. 6 at 3 p.m. at Kaiser Permanente Arena. The exhibition game will consist of six 12-minute quarters with each team playing a total of two quarters apiece. There will be a 15 minute halftime/warmup between halves, with 10 minutes allotted for the sitting team and five additional minutes for opponents. The timeout limit for the first quarter of each half will be waived. Quarters one, three and five will be designated as “teaching quarters” in which the timeout limit will be removed.
Santa Cruz will play the first two quarters of the preseason game against the Salt Lake City Stars. The Warriors will then face Reno in the third and fourth quarters. To close the tri-game, Reno and Salt Lake City will play each other in the fifth and sixth quarters. Preseason tickets will go on sale to the general public on Friday, Oct. 28 at 12:00 p.m. with tickets starting as low as $9 and floor seats starting at $35. To purchase tickets click HERE. The 2016-17 season opens at Kaiser Permanente Arena on Saturday, Nov. 12 at 7:00 p.m. against the Los Angeles D-Fenders. All fans in attendance on Opening Night will receive a Warriors T-shirt.
Hello Ryan Coonerty!
I recently read one of the best op/ed pieces on the death of Sean Arlt. I hope Ryan reads this and takes it to heart.
And after you have a chance to read that very well thought out piece, then have a look at this link from over a year ago. It’s part of a series from the Senile on “The tangled web of Santa Cruz County’s mental health services”. I encourage you to read the whole article but I just wanted to excerpt a very compelling and TELLING quote here. One that shows a long pattern of “willful ignorance” from the county and Ryan among others. Ryan was the city’s district supervisor when this article was written.
In 11 years, the Santa Cruz resident has been hospitalized more than 50 times for psychiatric symptoms, such as delusions, paranoia, mania, depression and hearing voices. Around one-third of those hospitalizations have been outside the county, due to a lack of space in county facilities, the woman in the article said. The low-income Medi-Cal patient was diagnosed with six mental illnesses before being told last year she has bipolar disorder type one. Finally, she has a diagnosis and treatment plan in which she is confident, she said. “If they had diagnosed me properly and treated me properly with correct medication from the beginning, I would probably have utilized less services,” Wentworth said. She said her doctor told her the system failed her for treating her incorrectly for years. “I believe that’s true, it did, because I suffered for a long time,” She’s spent weeks at a time locked against her will by court order at the county-funded behavioral health center, and cycled through the county residential facilities that helped her transition out of crisis care.
Don’t Forget to Vote!
If you haven’t already voted by absentee ballot, you can still bring it to your local polling place on November 8th and just drop it off. So you can fill it out in advance and just drop it off the day of the election (which is what I usually do).
But don’t forget to vote! This city council election is very important for the future of Santa Cruz for at least the next 4 years. Past elections have been won or lost by as little as a few hundred votes, so every vote really does matter here. People have died for our right to vote. The least we can do is respect them by doing it.
Vote NO on Proposition 57
Sheriff Jim Hart says NO on Prop 57.
“In November, California voters will be asked to decide another initiative. If approved by voters, Proposition 57 will lead to the early release of state prison inmates convicted of serious crimes including assault with a deadly weapon, child abuse, child abduction, human trafficking, elder abuse, gang crimes, hate crimes, arson and specified sexual assault related offenses.” Hart states. “Proposition 57 is titled, “Public Safety and Rehabilitation Initiative”, but it has little to do with public safety and much to do with prison overcrowding and the state’s ability to comply with the United States Supreme Court’s order to reduce the prison population. As your county sheriff and the chief law enforcement officer of Santa Cruz County, I have a duty to keep our communities safe. This proposed law goes too far. I urge you to vote against Proposition 57”.
Keeping Up With Chris Krohn
It’s our final installment of “Keeping Up With Chris Krohn”. I’m sure Rachel O’Malley will be thrilled. Once Chris loses in this election, I really won’t have a reason to talk about him anymore. And if he somehow wins a spot, well I’ll be talking a lot more about him for the next 4 years. – BD
One final blast from a neighbor on NextDoor expressing their opinion on Chris Krohn:
I’m betting Rachel flagged that one for removal too. Nobody likes hearing their husband being called a slumlord, no matter how true it might be.
And speaking of Rachel, I think it’s HILARIOUS how a small group of wingnut progressives (led by Bratton and his Krazy Kooksters) are trying to shame some of the city council candidates for receiving “big money” (their descriptions) of $350 (which is the limit on campaign financing that EVERYONE agreed to). They proceed to out and name some of the donors to try to shame them. So let’s look both ways here! I’m curious why Rachel O’Malley, long time owner of multiple properties locally including rental properties, donated “big money” donations of $350 to 3 OF CHRIS KROHN’S COMPETITORS? Is she trying to help Chris lose? Why on earth would she donate OVER A THOUSAND DOLLARS TO 3 OF CHRIS’S COMPETITORS? None of the other candidates are that stupid to have their “significant others” donate A THOUSAND DOLLARS OF THEIR HARD EARNED MONEY TO THEIR COMPETITORS. Chris has raised the least amount of money of the 4 “Clowncil” candidates, probably in large part because his wife is giving his money away to the other 3. Just amazing what you can find on those 460 forms.
CITY COUNCIL CANDIDATES ENDORSED BY THE WEEKLY DUMP!
I’m endorsing her for a number of reasons. She has a masters degree in public policy so she’s not just someone with a bunch of grand ideas with no substance and no ability to make it happen. She seems pragmatic. She works for the County Office of Education so she’s already doing public service work that really does benefit not only the community but the less fortunate as well. I realize she’s not actively selling “public safety” as part of her campaign, and that’s a concern for me. But I think she understands what needs to be done there without the need to spell it out yet. I really like what I saw at the first candidate forum. I think she was the best speaker. She didn’t read from a script but seemed to be very well prepared. She’s raising 2 young kids. I’m sure she can handle the kindergarten atmosphere of most city council meetings like the adult in the room. I have little doubt that she’d do a fine job on the city council. I might not agree with all of her positions, and I’m fine with that. I’m not always right. Just most of the time.
I’m endorsing him for a number of reasons. He’s smart, ambitious, and idealistic. And perhaps more importantly he’s fresh. He’s not a retread. He’s also not afraid to tackle sensitive subjects and try to identify better solutions. He’s not married to an ideology. He seems both progressive and pragmatic. I think he understands the challenges of improving public safety in Santa Cruz, a town easily frightened by a rescue vehicle named after a cute little animal. One thing I feel he does understand is the red-line level of dysfunction within the city government. I don’t think he can fix it (at least not by himself) but I don’t think he’ll perpetuate it either. I think he’s a break from the status quo, despite being endorsed by the status quo. He serves on the Downtown Commission, so I’m sure he’d represent their interests better than some of the others on the city council do or will. And perhaps his biggest strength is he’s smart enough to understand the nuances of data driven analytics and how to apply that to improving the way our city government “does business”, especially with social service based non-profits looking for handouts in perpetuity.
I know I’ve been pretty hard on her here at the Dump, and it’s really not personal. She’s the Mayor. She means well. I never doubt that. It’s kind of a reflection right now of her job performance. But the truth is I blame City Manager Martin Bernal MUCH more for the local public safety issues than Cynthia or any other person on the city council. If anything, I’ve been disappointed that she didn’t do more this year as Mayor, but she hasn’t done a bad job, and given the fact that she has to deal with both Don AND Micah pontificating and basically derailing every single meeting, and the local circus from the public, and the fact that she’s still doing it and seems to enjoy doing it! Now that’s hard to find. What she does bring is obvious wisdom, knowledge of history, and perspective. She is status quo, and I know I complain A LOT about that. But we should be careful to not toss the baby (Cynthia) out with the bathwater (Don and Micah). You can have a variety of opinion about Cynthia but she is definitely pragmatic, and that’s pretty high on my checklist. Yes she panders. It’s an election! They all do. Some more than others. But she has shown an ability to actually deliver. At least when she doesn’t have a circus to deal with. Hopefully the next city council will be less circus and less circuitous. The new members can learn a lot from her experience in navigating city government.
The city council bumped their meeting up a week due to the election next Tuesday. It was actually a pretty quick meeting, and even oral communications, which can be a complete circus and last for over an hour, lasted all of 10 minutes. The main discussion at this meeting revolved around 2 topics. A possible new, multi-use facility to host the Warriors (and possibly other events), and a discussion about FAA flight patterns over Santa Cruz. A lot of the Warriors discussion was covered by BD in the feature on Depot Park above. The main 2 sites being considered seem to be the current site (favored) and Depot Park. There was a lot of resistance to Depot Park as an option by neighbors who spoke at the meeting, as well as basically all of the city council. One guy named Prince spoke at oral communications about “Jazz Week” in Santa Cruz, he wants to expand “cross cultural education” opportunities and jazz workshops in Santa Cruz with local kids. He and his partner were looking for the city to contribute performance spaces. Another guy gave the city props for reducing bird mierda at Cowells. That was it. Kook free oral communications is like a gift to the city council! Then they moved on to the FAA discussion about flight patterns currently impacting areas in the south county. Apparently Don Lane is on some board or committee. So Don gave an update.
Like Santa Cruz HAS NO BIGGER ISSUES TO DISCUSS THAN FAA FLIGHT PATTERNS OVER SANTA CRUZ. Tons of nuisance crime on a daily basis, SCPD is understaffed and overextended and suffering from low morale and community support, rampant out of control homelessness issues, and THIS IS HOW THEY WASTE THEIR TIME AND OUR TAX DOLLARS. WHO CREATED THIS AGENDA? Maybe a mayor running for re-election who doesn’t want to rock the boat (or get ANYTHING DONE by having to pick a side and decide on something)? And the city wonders why people are frustrated at the lack of action taken by the city council and the city manager? I have an idea. Stop chasing crap you can’t fix and focus on stuff that effects us daily that you can fix. DO SOMETHING MORE THAN WASTE OUR TIME AND MONEY.
Sports Comes to the Weekly Dump!
The Weekly Dump is lightening up a little this week with “Guerreros” a new “irregular feature” featuring contributing writer and long time Warriors fan Ernie Douglas. It’s gonna be focused on the Warriors basketball teams (both the Santa Cruz and Golden State varieties). We’ll talk about both teams from a long time, local fan’s perspective. Ever since the Warriors agreed to move their development league team to Santa Cruz, and the city worked with the team to build Kaiser Arena near downtown on short notice, it’s been one of the most successful city partnerships and development projects in recent history. And the local community LOVES the local Warriors, with games consistently selling out and people bringing their families out for a safe and fun evening of sports entertainment. So this season, we’ll be covering the Warriors on the Weekly Dump!
by Ernie Douglas
We’ve got Warriors basketball again! Not locally but we’ve got the A Team playing now, with a much different look led by Kevin Durant of course. The GS Warriors got blown out by San Antonio in embarrassing fashion. “They just got spanked in their first game” (Barak Obama on ESPN). Oh well. It’s one game. Durant looked great. The talent is here. They just need to figure out the best way to use it. They aren’t just gonna play the best 5 guys 40 minutes a game. They’re gonna stagger their best players all year to manage their minutes and develop their role players. They barely beat a scrappy New Orleans team and Anthony Davis just dominated them. They barely beat a Suns team with no all star players. But then they come back and blow out a good Blazers team in Portland. The Portland game is the first time all (regular) season they’ve looked good on defense. And they go 3-0 on the road. They came home Thursday night to face OKC in the game everyone’s been waiting for. The first matchup of Durant vs. Westbrook. It’s like basketball’s version of Rocky vs. Creed II. And what happens? Durant absolutely destroys Westbrook and OKC. If there was any doubt what this team is capable of, they were firing on all cylinders against the Thunder. They brought fire and brimstone down on OKC with malice of forethought.
I really like this Patrick McCaw kid. He reminds me of a young Rajon Rondo (I know, same number, headband, but this kid can actually shoot). And Ian Clark has solidified his position as a solid rotation player. And Zaza is finally coming around.
Upcoming games this week: 11/7 New Orleans, 11/9 Mavericks, 11/10 Nuggets
Our local SC Warriors kick off their season next week. Looking forward to covering them this season.
Weekly shoutouts to all the folks who showed up at the city council meeting to let them know what an idiotic idea it would be to kill Depot Park as we know it. And a shout out to Don Lane and others for admitting it was a terrible choice on many levels. Weekly shoutout to Rachel O’Malley, who hates the Weekly Dump so much she complained about someone who posted a link to it on NextDoor and had it flagged. I guess the truth hurts doesn’t it Rachel! And shoutout to all the Cubs fans out there! The drought is over.
The Weekly Seen
Best Halloween costume I saw this week. The Human Barnacle meets the Human Mierda Stain. Grab the gatos.
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