Downtown Holiday Parade This Saturday
This Saturday morning starting around 10AM, the annual Downtown Holiday Parade makes a slow crawl down Pacific Avenue. Expect bands, dancers, classic cars, synchronized librarians, and lots of progressive social service non-profits looking for a chance to pimp their brand. I’m sure the Food Not Bombs people will crash the parade like they do every year. Pay for a spot? Are you kidding me? But it’s a pretty nice event in general, brings out lots of families with kids, and really helps pack the downtown, which helps the merchants by bringing shoppers that hang around after the event. It’s a nice blend of kid friendly traditional (marching bands, kid friendly stuff) as well as good Santa Cruz weird. And of course some of the usual kooks will inevitably be down there in their finest tin foil hats and dirty bathrobes complaining to anyone that will listen (or just pass by). A good narcissist is a good opportunist first. And expect to see some of the city council members down there working the crowd. It’s a see and be seen photo op. It’s time to gather with friends and complain about the Donald and lament the misery of Hillary, and oh by the way, happy holidays!
Shoppers Flock Downtown to Support Local Businesses on Rainy Saturday
Local shoppers weren’t put off by the threat of rain (and eventual actual rain) as they flocked to Pacific Avenue and downtown Santa Cruz to shop and support local businesses. It was good to see. I got called out in the comments last week (rightfully so) and so I was down there spending my hard earned bread on local business on Saturday. The coffee shops were packed. Santa Cruz Coffee Roasting was as crowded as I’ve ever seen it. The weather took most of the outdoor dining seating out, so the restaurants themselves were pretty crowded inside. And not a lot of troublemakers down there either. I even saw old Nate, fresh off his 10th place finish in the city council race, handing out free paper origami cranes (at least he was trying to). A few tourist types shot him funny glares, but that probably had more to do with the shaved head Travis Bickle look he’s sporting now. I wanted to at least try to chat him up and thank him for running, but he was past me quickly and I was hungry for Indian buffet.
Man Shot Along the River Levee Near Broadway
Multiple calls came in from people who heard gunshots near Broadway and the east levee. SCPD determined that a man was robbed and shot in both legs Monday night around 9PM. 3 suspects are being sought. What I heard was the suspects tried to rob the victim of his cell phone, there was a scuffle, and the victim was shot multiple times in both legs. The victim was flown over the hill to a trauma center. Wasn’t that marginalized, useless, self absorbed, soon to be forgotten and out of office slumlord Micah Posner just whining and complaining about the city spending money on lights and security cameras along the river levee? Why yes he was! Aren’t we done with this fool yet? 4 years of Micah Posner is 4 years too many. Where did this happen? Blocks from his house. Worst neighbor in Santa Cruz.
Sunday Night Shooting in Beach Flats Turns Up No Suspects
Sunday night around 8PM, SCPD had multiple units searching the area around the Boardwalk and the trestle bridge, including Murray street and the Raymond street area looking for a suspected shooter. I’m pretty sure a handgun was recovered as well, but I didn’t hear about any actual victims. As usual, details were less than forthcoming. They were looking for a male, about 5’8″ wearing a flannel shirt over a hoody. I think he was also caught on somebody’s security camera as well.
Domestic Disturbance on Grant Street
Thursday night around 8PM, a report came in about a physical altercation between 2 males on Grant street. The caller was a mother of one of the men, who reported her son was apparently recently dealing with some mental health issues, and she felt he had been released early. He was screaming profanities at a “former friend” and it turned physical. Sounds familiar. Multiple units responded.
Domestic Disturbance in Hotel Near the Boardwalk
Thursday night around 11PM, a woman on 2nd street called and reported being beat up by a white male, about 25 years old. The suspect left the scene before SCPD arrived. Witnesses reported a loud verbal argument that turned violent and physical. SCPD knew the suspect’s name. Suspect also had a restraining order and was out on probation. AB109? Prop 47? Prop 57? Pick one. He was in jail and now he’s out, beating up women. Way to go California.
Grey Bears 43rd Annual Holiday Dinner
This free event is for local folks age 55 and older. So if you don’t look older than 55, prepare to be carded! It takes place this Sunday, December 4th at 11:30AM at the Santa Cruz Civic Auditorium. Entertainment and a free dinner prepared by Santa Cruz Diner chefs. I love the Grey Bears organization. They’re one of the finer local non-profit groups really making a difference in our community. They run a terrific thrift store and recycling center on Chanticleer, and suffered a pretty devastating fire a few years back. But they bounced back and continue to do great work in the community. If you’re considering a gift donation to a local non profit group, please consider them. I give them two BIG thumbs up. You can donate to them through Santa Cruz Gives directly from that link to their website.
Wednesday Night Crash on Highway 1 Snarls Traffic
Wednesday night there was a multi-car pileup along Highway 1 near the Emeline exit that caused at least one car to catch on fire, backing up Highway 1 traffic heading north towards the fishhook. Apparently there were no serious injuries but it created quite the mess to clean up.
UCSC Student Makes a Number of Dubious Decisions Resulting in Nearly Being Kidnapped
When it rains it pours with some people. Does UCSC have a course called “Common Sense”? A report came in that around 12:30AM on Thursday morning, a female was waiting for a bus at the Kresge College bus stop on the corner of Heller Drive and McLaughlin Drive (do the buses even run at that hour?) when she decided to hitchhike to the base of campus, according to UC Santa Cruz Police Chief Nader Oweis. Being a female and HITCHHIKING after midnight? Not a wise move. She was approached and apparently picked up by a Latino man in his mid-20s in a four-door sedan. The driver was described as having “short, slicked-back hair” and spoke with a Spanish accent, according to the student. He also appeared to be intoxicated and smoking marijuana. Getting in a car with THIS guy? Poor decision number 2. As they arrived at High and Bay streets, the driver did not stop to allow the student to exit the vehicle. Instead, he continued down Bay toward Mission Street. The driver ignored the student’s repeatedly requests to pull over or stop. As the vehicle slowed to make a right turn to head northbound on Mission Street from Bay Street, the student jumped from the slowly moving vehicle, suffering minor injuries. The driver did not stop and fled the area. The suspect’s vehicle was described as a newer model four-door sedan with dark gray or silver paint. It had red paper dealer plates from a Watsonville dealership, according to the student. UC Santa Cruz police ask anyone with information call 831-459-2231 ext. 1.
New Fairfield Inn Opens on Westside
A new 82 room Fairfield Inn has just opened up at 2956 Mission St. in Santa Cruz. It actually looks pretty nice from the outside, has kind of a clean corporate look. It seems to be a nice alternative to the hotel options along Ocean or down by the Boardwalk. The westside is really starting to build a solid business park in the area around Western and Delaware. I think the local business in this area can support this, and of course it will benefit from UCSC annual events that involve parents and family, as well as tourists looking for a nice alternative to the rat race of Ocean or the Boardwalk. It’s within an easy walk of Natural Bridges beach, and it’s a quick in and out from stuff to see and do along north Highway 1. I can see other chains seeing the potential here as well. If Santa Cruz ever gets serious about creating a real conference and event space (on a par with say Asilomar), this is the area to do it.
New Development Begins at 1400 Ocean Street
This past September, planning staff approved Design and Demolition Authorization Permits to allow construction of an 8,400 square foot commercial development at this location at the corner of Ocean Street and Glenwood Avenue (formerly containing The Starving Musician). Building permits were issued in October and construction is currently underway with the foundations being poured. This week, The Habit Burger Grill applied to occupy the northernmost building. The Habit first opened in 1969 in Santa Barbara and now has over 175 restaurants worldwide, with 137 in California. I’ve also heard there’s plans for a new Dunkin Donuts at this location, but I’ve still heard no formal announcement on that yet.
Moving the Library Under a 5 Story Parking Garage
The city council will be considering this idea at a special meeting next Tuesday night at 6PM. Personally, I hate the idea. With the passage of June’s Measure S, a $67 million countywide library facilities improvement bond measure, Santa Cruz is eyeing ways to spend its $25 million portion of the bond revenue. It’s obvious how they want to spend it. Not on a new library, but on a parking garage with a new library on the bottom floor. Read the fine print here. Nothing will be ultimately decided at this meeting beyond giving staff some direction, but this is a really bad look. The current location of the library is fine. The building it’s in, while somewhat dated, has WAY more character than the bottom floor of a parking garage. PUT THE MONEY INTO A LIBRARY, WHERE THE PEOPLE VOTED TO SPEND IT. NOT A PARKING GARAGE. There’s a parking lot next to the library that could be used for expanding the current building, improving the technologies, etc. We didn’t vote for new taxes so the city could use money designated for library improvements on building a new parking garage. Don’t be fleeced here. More in the Senile.
Strike Out Hunger at Boardwalk Bowl
Donate a can of food to the Boardwalk Bowl between now and the end of the year and bowl a game for FREE! All food donations go to Second Harvest Food Bank of Santa Cruz County to help feed local families. Last year, they collected over 8,120 cans or almost four tons of food! Strike Out Hunger received the Charity of the Year Award from the Bowling Proprietors Association of America and is the official charity of Northern California Bowling Centers. Now in its tenth year, our goal is to help more local families in need by collecting even more cans and donations than last year.
City Hall Comes to You
In the final “City Hall to You” event of 2016, city leaders and staff will be at the Elks Lodge at 150 Jewell Street on Wednesday, December 7th from 6:30-8:30PM. Expect to probably see some members of the city council (at least the ones not leaving), as well as the newly elected members to be present, in addition to folks like Martin Bernal, Scott Collins, and Kevin Vogel. Might even see a Supervisor named Coonerty or McPherson there (but maybe not). It’s a good chance to get face time and really vent to these people what’s bugging you. You don’t have to go through the bi-monthly circus at the actual city council meetings. You can go right to the source in a one to one discussion, or at least in a smaller, less public setting. You’re much more likely to be heard without the white noise that seems to drone out the council chamber discussions on a regular basis. Bonus: You don’t have to listen to Don and Micah give condescending lectures!
Do We Really Need 2 Christmas Trains?
It’s December so that means we get the local version of the Polar Express. Not to be confused with the Roaring Camp Holiday Train that runs from the Boardwalk to Felton, the Polar Express train runs from the Boardwalk to Capitola (and back I assume). I’m not trying to sound like a Grinch here, I’ll save that for city and county employees. I’m just surprised there’s a large enough market locally to support 2 trains basically running the same limited theme (Santa and Christmas in a non-religious way). Both trains run on a limited schedule. I’m sure the kids love it. Never mind those bums camping and drinking along the tracks. They aren’t assembling those bikes for delivery to all the nice girls and boys. They aren’t Santa’s elves. They are the Grinch’s elves. They steal bikes from good girls and boys.
LATE BREAKING NEWS: The Polar Express Train has been temporarily suspended due to safety concerns over the condition of the track. More info from KSBW here.
DeCinzotized – Classic Steven DeCinzo
by Ernie Douglas
Golden State Warriors:
The GS Warriors popped down to LA to take on the Lakers at Staples and they popped them pretty good. 2nd time they faced them in the past 3 days, and 2nd time they beat them down good. They were up by 20 in the 3rd quarter. Between the big 4 and the fact that Russell and Randle were still out for the Lakers, LA was just overmatched. Still gotta give Luke Walton credit for getting these guys to overachieve so far this year. They can be fun to watch, they will be fun to watch (I hate to say this but a lot of this is because they finally passed the Kobe kidney stone here). Should be a good rivalry for the next few years. Unfortunately, Draymond (ankle) and Ian Clark (throat) got hurt in the game. They flew back to Oracle to take on the Timberwolves the next night on a back to back. No Draymond and no Ian Clark. Injuries don’t appear serious but team is being cautious. Kevon Looney gets his first start, and the 20 year old actually does a pretty good job guarding the beast known as Karl Anthony Towns. Looney and Zaza (ok, I was looking for a reason to combine those last names) managed to disrupt Towns offense pretty well. The Big 3 all had big nights again as the team moved to 15-2. Curry had 34, Durant had 28, Klay had 23. The bench also played well, McGee had another solid game with 8 points in 11 solid minutes. Monday night they took on Atlanta at Oracle. It was a pretty close game. That Schroeder guy for the Hawks is a pest and always seems to bother Curry. And Dwight Howard can be a load for the undersized Warriors front court to handle sometimes. But Draymond managed to save the day and the game with a couple of key timed blocks, including one on Schroeder that stuffed the ball back in his face (in your face!), and another that resulted in some kind of twisted Sparty leprechaun dance. Thursday night, riding a 12 game winning streak, they took on the Rockets at Oracle. Curry had an off shooting night (and Patrick Beverly is another one of those pesky guys that gets under Curry’s skin). This game was pretty much a track meet all the way, given the nature of Harden and D’Antoni. Durant had another outstanding game, and Draymond almost got a triple double. The game went to double overtime where the Warriors finally lost.
Upcoming games this week: 12/3 vs. Phoenix (at Oracle), 12/5 vs. Indiana (at Oracle), 12/7 at LA Clippers, 12/8 at Utah.
Santa Cruz Warriors:
The Santa Cruz Warriors managed to hold off the Rio Grande Valley Vipers, winning 112-110 on Friday night at Kaiser Arena. Elgin Cook led the way for the Warriors with 23 points off the bench. Phil Pressey added 19 points, four rebounds, nine assists, and three steals. Cameron Jones contributed 17 points and had seven rebounds, and Dennis Clifford chipped in 14 points and 12 rebounds. The Warriors then traveled toEl Segundo to take on the LA D-Fenders on Saturday night, losing 134-109. Phil Pressey scored 21 points, and added three rebounds and eight assists. Cameron Jones contributed 20 points, three rebounds, seven assists, and two steals, while Elgin Cook had 15 points, four rebounds, and two steals. Golden State Warriors center Damian Jones had a short rehab stint when he was assigned to Santa Cruz but was recently called back up to the team. Cameron Jones had 22 points, six rebounds and seven assists in a close loss to the Sioux Falls Skyforce. Scott Wood chipped in 21 points and six rebounds, while Phil Pressey contributed a double-double with 17 points and 11 assists to go with his six rebounds. The Warriors then lost 100-84 to Reno on the first game of an extended road trip. Elgin Cook shined off the bench for Santa Cruz, leading all scorers with 27 points, four rebounds, one steal and three blocks. Cameron Jones also dropped in 16 points, and had five rebounds, and five assists. The team then dropped their fourth game in a row when they fell to the Westchester Knicks 99-98 in White Plains, N.Y. Elgin Cook came off the bench to score a game-high 33 points, and added seven rebounds, four assists and a pair of steals. Phil Pressey had 27 points to go with five rebounds, four assists, and two steals. Dennis Clifford had 15 points and nine rebounds, and Cameron Jones finished with 10 points and five rebounds. They traveled to Brooklyn to take on the Long Island Nets on Thursday, and they dropped another one 114-104. Phil Pressey and Elgin Cook each had 22 points, with Cook adding 11 rebounds. Phil Pressey added 7 assists, and Cameron Jones finished with 11 points and 10 rebounds.
Upcoming games this week: 12/3 at Maine (brrrr!), 12/6 at Delaware, 12/9 vs. Austin (at Kaiser)
The Weekly Seen
“Intake Facilities”, 1220 River Street, Santa Cruz.
There’s something about packing humans into shipping containers that just visually screams “human trafficking”. Maybe that’s just me. It’s like that scene in Willie Wonka where they walk through a narrow room to a small door that opens up in to the magical world of the Oompa Loompas. Except the doors at the end here are locked.
Weekly shoutout to city council member Pamela Comstock on her pending “retirement” from her part time job with our dysfunctional city government. The Rolling Stones “Satisfaction” comes to mind as I think back on your 4 years (“well I try, and I try, and I try, and I try try try, I can’t get no…”). We’ll miss you. Thanks for all you tried to do. Weekly shoutout to SCPD’s Leo Gomez, who rescued and adopted a feral kitten hiding in the engine of his car. How can anyone hate on these guys with a story like this. And a shoutout to the fine folks at the Kuumbwa for bringing the always awesome David Lindley to town tonight. I hope to be in the crowd somewhere. El Rayo-X Lives!
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