"AROUND SUNOL" by BREE K. JAMES


December 23, 2002

JUST PRETEND IT'S SNOW, OKAY? Yowza, we've taken a soaking! Roofs are leaking, mud is sliding, branches are flying and Sinbad Creek is roaring down the canyon. The wind up on my hill is so wild, I expect to wake up in Kansas one of these mornings. My dog, Viva, a 5-pound Yorkshire Terrier, almost did the "…and Toto, too" thing the other day. I swear, I grabbed her just before she went airborne right in my backyard.

It's pretty tame down on Kilkare Road near my driveway, but up the canyon a bit it's been a different story. Jeroen Engelberts told me his family's cars were up to their axels in water last week. The road crews from Alameda County have been super out here, clearing debris and mud and generally mopping up after the storms. We're all very thankful for their quick and thorough response.

SOS SHARES HOLIDAY CHEER: In spite of the pouring rain on Friday, Dec. 13, the turn-out at Save Our Sunol's annual holiday dinner at Sunol Glen School was amazing. Special guests included several firefighters from the California Department of Forestry Station in Sunol, State Senator (and Sunolian) Liz Figueroa, Alameda County Supervisor Gail Steele, Alameda County Planning Commissioner Audrey Lapell, and Sunol School Board Trustee Guin Van Dyke.

Also present were Sunol Business Guild President and Vice President, Jim O'Laughlin and Dimitri Kastriotis, respectively, and Little Valley Vineyard owner Sandi Bohner. Other important parts of our community were represented by Kilkare Woods Association President Stephan Doyle, Sunol Regional Park Ranger Dan Reasor, Sunol Repertory Theatre Producer Diane Tiessen, Grandmas Club member Maryann Canaparo, and Sunol Advisory Committee member Irv Tiessen.

SOS President Pat Stillman took great pleasure in welcoming the sixty people present and introducing the special guests. Morgan King, attorney for Save Our Sunol, gave an optimistic report on the group's lawsuit to stop a mining project on Water Temple Field, and Senator Figueroa and Supervisor Steele provided updates on how their areas of government are coping with the difficult economic climate.

Sunol Glen School eighth-grade teacher Laura Dennis, and head of the Maintenance Dept. Brad Taylor enjoyed dinner with the group before dashing from the school cafeteria to the auditorium to share in chaperoning the dance going on there. No one in this town ever doubts that our school is the center of activity here!

Everyone enjoyed the delicious dinner and desserts catered by Sunolian Julie Lesher, with able assistance from her son, Ryan. Cindy Frillman and Nancy Davis once again transformed the cafeteria into an elegant holiday dinner spot. Given the weather lately, it's certainly fine to share such a warm and comforting evening with a grand group of folks.

ANOTHER KIND OF COMFORT: Sunol Girl Scout volunteer Helen Eberle reported that "Operation One Warm Coat" received over at least a hundred coats, sweaters and sweatshirts for those in need. "I received calls from Danville, Pleasanton, Livermore and Sunol," Helen said. "Thank you to all the generous people."

And here's wishing you all a very warm and happy holiday from your neighbors here in Sunol. Be well, be safe, and be merry.

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