"AROUND SUNOL" by BREE K. JAMES


April 28, 2003

MEETINGS, FUND RAISERS AND FABULOUS FOOD are on Sunol's agenda this week. There are two meetings that may be of interest to Sunolians concerned about property usage downtown. Tomorrow (4-29) the Sunol Advisory Board meets in the Sunol Glen cafeteria at 7 p.m., and on Thursday, the Alameda County Board of Adjustments meets at 1:30 p.m. at the county Public Works Building, 4825 Gleason Drive in Dublin. A main topic at both of these meetings will be the conditional use permit for a business at 11842 Main Street.

The last Alameda Creek Alliance monthly meeting until September will be held Tuesday at 7 p.m. in the Sunol Glen Community Room. According to ACA Director Jeff Miller, "We will be discussing preparations for the upcoming Steelhead Festival and the ACA's proposed Land Use Plan for Sunol and Ohlone Parks."

As mentioned previously, there's a school board meeting tonight at 6 p.m. in the Sunol Glen library. Everyone is sure to be refreshed from the week off for spring break and ready to continue the important business of running our terrific school.

Superintendent-Principal Diane Everett recently sent an open letter to school parents and community members addressing the potential impacts of state budget cuts on Sunol Glen. "Because the Sunol Glen Unified School Board and staff have always been fiscally conservative, the mid-year cuts for this year demanded only a few minor cuts to our budget which we were able to absorb," she wrote.

Other Tri-Valley schools are finding it necessary to give lay-off notices of hundreds of teachers as they face multi-million dollar shortfalls for next school year. As for Sunol Glen Unified, Diane explained that we have given notices to three certificated staff members on a precautionary basis. "However, our projected enrollment for the 2003-04 school year is 204," she continued. "If this holds true these notices will not be given in May and we will keep all of our certificated staff."

Facing a possible funding cut of as much as $41,000, Sunol Glen intends to be proactive in the months of April, May and June to raise this amount and avoid cutting programs. "If, however, we do not raise this money," Diane said, "cuts will be made to technology, art, music, office personnel, and library. These are programs we value and we will strive to save."

Part of the effort to raise this money is the Dollar-a-Day Campaign. If each Sunol Glen family donates one dollar for each of the 180 days of the school year, Sunol Glen would have $33,300 toward the goal amount. "Community members and parents have already donated $1,400 to our cause, our students are brainstorming activities to generate money, and our dedicated community club has given us $5,000 additional funding," Diane's letter concluded. "We are on our way with your assistance and support."

There are several ways you can help, starting with the student run Shop and Wash event Saturday (5-3). While you browse at a flea market and enjoy refreshments, your car will received a handsome washing. Proceeds will benefit the school's Arts and Media Center. You might also consider a donation directly to the school for the special account set up for the Center. These donations will not be used for general expenses.

Checks payable to Sunol Glen School with "Arts and Media Center" in the memo line may be turned in to the school office or mailed to 11601 Main Street, Sunol, CA 94586. Watch this column for news of future fundraisers. It's time to pull together for education in all of our communities!

FINE FOOD AND WINE AT ELLISTON: We haven't checked in with Elliston in a while, and there is definitely some delectable news to report. Now open the first and third Friday of each month from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m., the Chef's Table features a variety of seasonally inspired dishes. The $36 per person buffet includes at least two entrees, side dishes, salads and dessert. Wine will be available for purchase by the glass or bottle.

Then there's the new Café at Elliston, which opened April 5 and offers a "light faire menu to enhance your wine tasting experience" Saturdays and Sundays from noon to 4 p.m. on the mansion patio. And last but most certainly not least, there's the Mother's Day Lunch on May 11 at noon. The $55 per person meal starts with Champagne and hors d'oeuvres, and includes a very special three-course menu. For more details and sample menus, visit Elliston's Web site at www.elliston.com. For reservations, please call 925-862-2377 Tuesday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Bon appetite!

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