Rosanne Foust - The Spectrum Magazine - Redwood City's Monthly ...

Rosanne Foust - The Spectrum Magazine - Redwood City's Monthly ...

A wife, a mom, a mayor!

Rosanne Foust

“It’s all about opportunity and

that’s what I want to focus on”

Also in this issue:

Who’s Been Naughty and

Nice, Parties and more in

“As I Was Saying…”

Children’s Authors

and Illustrators Festival

A taste of Oaxaca

in Redwood City

The Spirit of Community.

It’s what we’re thankful for this holiday season.

It’s the holiday season and the spirit of community is alive and well in Redwood City – and that makes us grateful for all those

who continue to help us create a community vision for the Saltworks site that will foster neighborliness and inspire goodwill.

The spirit of the season is also why we’ve chosen to support the Shelter Network on behalf of every Redwood City resident.

The Shelter Network defines the essence of community by helping Peninsula homeless families and individuals

find a place to call home and we are proud to lend a helping hand.

If you would like to support Shelter Network, please visit to learn more about their mission

and ways you can help.

On behalf of the entire DMB Redwood City Saltworks team, we wish you a joyful holiday season.

Phone: 650.366.0500 | |

CIP40435 HolidaySpectrumAD.indd 1

11/21/07 10:34:47 AM

The Spectrum.DEC.07

Steve Penna

Owner and Publisher

Anne Callery

Copy Editor

Judy Buchan

Contributing Writer

Valerie Harris

Contributing Writer

James Massey

Graphic Designer

DJ Design, Dale McKee

Advertising Graphic Art

Contributing Writer

James R. Kaspar

Cover/Cover Story Photography

Welcome to the December issue of The Spectrum Magazine. With the New Year knocking at our door,

we have several community stories we hope you will enjoy this month.

Our cover story, by contributing writer Valerie Harris, is on newly appointed Redwood City Mayor

Rosanne Foust. She is the first Redwood Shores resident to hold that position, but, as you will read, she

is aggressive in representing our entire community. It will be interesting to see how the city progresses

under her leadership and what her priorities will be.

Our business profile this month is on a new restaurant downtown called Black Bean. The owners bring

recipes from the Oaxaca region of Mexico. The offerings are unique, very tasty and priced so you can

enjoy several items if you desire.

Publisher Steve Penna has some interesting items up for discussion this month, including county cutbacks,

parties around town and his holiday list of naughty and nice people, in his column, “As I Was Saying….”

We also have cultural events, news briefs, senior activities, financial advice and details on Orion

Elementary School’s Sixth Annual Children’s Authors and Illustrators Festival.

We would like to thank our loyal advertisers for supporting our publication, and we encourage you to

support them by patronizing their businesses during the holiday season and in the New Year. Many have

special offers for you, so please take the time to look over their ads this month and remember they are

the real reason you are reading The Spectrum this and every month.

The Spectrum is the most read publication in Redwood City, and we are thankful for our readers too!

We wish you all a very Happy New Year!

Table of Contents

Inside The Spectrum – 4

Hospital Rebuild Approved – 5

“As I Was Saying...” – 6

A Passion at Orion School – 8

Cultural Events – 13

Community Interest – 13

Rosanne Foust – 16

News Briefs – 20

A Taste of Oaxaca – 23

Annual Toy And Book Drive – 25

Shop Redwood City – 27

Finance: Holiday Spending Control – 28

Handyman Hints – 29

Senior Activities – 29

A Minute With Santa Claus – 30


Inside The Spectrum: Cover Story Photo Shoot

This month’s photo shoot was scheduled by publisher Steve Penna with our cover

subject, newly appointed Redwood City Mayor Rosanne Foust, for Tuesday, Dec. 11, at

2:30 p.m. at City Hall on Middlefield Road.

Cover story photographer James Kaspar arrived first on the scene and was followed

by Penna a few minutes later. Penna roamed City Hall looking for Kaspar but could not

find him. Foust then arrived and the two began to look for him together as they talked.

After about 10 minutes, all were united as Kaspar was found waiting for the two

upstairs by the city manager’s office. They chose to start shooting the photographs with

Kaspar on the main floor looking up at Foust, who was on the second-story balcony.

It was business as usual in City Hall with customers coming into the different

departments to get information or services. Penna and Foust joked around — they

have been friends for a while — as Kaspar worked away. It must have looked like a

confusing scene, but it was actually calm.

Throughout the shoot, Foust was continually stopped and greeted by police officers,

city staff and residents. She is always attentive and seems genuinely interested in

talking to each person as if they were the only one there.

The final shots in City Hall were taken from the staircase above the council

chambers. The lighting was perfect and, as you can tell by the cover shot, the contrast

of the wood and paint accented Foust perfectly.

The three then moved to a comfortable setting and took the center-spread photos at

La Tartine, the new cafe across from the downtown cinema entrance.

The entire shoot took about an hour and a half and was one of our most enjoyable


The Spectrum congratulates Foust and in doing so realizes she has to follow the hard

work and dedication of her predecessor, Barbara Pierce. As our community knows,

Foust is very capable and will work hard for our city. Her main theme is Redwood City

pride! We are proud to have her on our cover.

Donate Your Vehicle


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Providing quality residential, vocational and support services to developmentally

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Sequoia to Give Up Power, Hospital Rebuild Approved

Sequoia Hospital is one giant step closer to being

rebuilt after its health care district unanimously

voted to contribute $75 million in tax dollars

to the project and relinquish its seats on the

hospital’s governing board.

The change will be the first time the district

has not had a definitive role in the oversight of

the hospital since its founding 57 years ago. The

new campus will include an 8,740-square-foot

emergency room, advanced cardiovascular center,

medical office building and four-story parking

garage. The new hospital will also have 167 beds,

nearly all private, which are designed to limit

infection and allow overnight family visits.

The district meeting was packed with many

deal supporters, some who spoke in favor of

the proposal. Two people spoke out against

the proposal. Throughout the lengthy process

to strike a deal, some opposed to the proposal

feared the district was giving Catholic Healthcare

West — the parent company of Sequoia Health

Services — too much decision-making power and

feared that could result in a sudden sale or decline

of hospital services.

The health care district, which includes

Redwood City, San Carlos, Belmont, Menlo Park,

Woodside, Atherton and Portola Valley, founded

the hospital in 1950 but has since evolved into

a philanthropic organization distributing its tax

dollars to groups with a health focus.

In 1996, voters approved a proposal that the

district turn over hospital management to operator

Catholic Healthcare West under a 30-year

agreement but continue appointing five members

to the hospital’s 10-person governing board.

In return, CHW paid the district $30 million,

which provided the seed money for its share of the

new hospital funding.

It will give up its right to appoint people to the

governing board.

Board member Art Faro assured the

“naysayers” the deal was safe. He said it was

better to have an established company run the

hospital than a government agency.

“Don’t look at it as we’re giving the hospital

away. The hospital is going to remain here,” Faro

said. “We did everything we could to tell people

this was coming down the pike. We had public

forums where very few people showed up.”

The hospital, like all in California, is mandated

by the state to meet seismic standards by 2013.

Facilities could either retrofit or rebuild. In

Sequoia’s case, officials felt the order was the

perfect chance to give the hospital a much-needed


Sequoia Hospital’s projected $240 million

rebuilding cost will be met by a collaborative

financing arrangement that calls for $75 million

from the health care district, $75 million from

CHW, $75 million from Sequoia Hospital and $15

million from philanthropic contributions raised

by the Sequoia Hospital Foundation. If more than

$240 million is required to complete the project,

CHW will provide those funds.

Once the rebuild is completed, the agreement

ensures the district will share in Sequoia

Hospital’s profits, provided that certain

benchmarks are attained.




Nothing helps a community

like teamwork.

When the people around here work together,

there’s nothing we can’t accomplish. We’re proud

to be part of the local team.

Northern Division Commercial Banking

John C. Adams, EVP • 415-396-2391

© 2004 Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. Member FDIC





Steve Penna

A community and political who’s who in Redwood

City attended the swearing in of our newly

appointed Mayor. Each Council member was

given the obligatory time to speak and honor

outgoing Mayor Barbara Pierce and then voted

for her successor Rosanne Foust. Many had been

wondering if either Alicia Aguirre or Ian Bain

would have been appointed Vice Mayor. If you look

at the normal progression, Bain should have been

appointed – I suspected that would not happen.

Then Aguirre would have been the next in line.

Well, former Mayor and Councilwoman Diane

Howard received the unanimous vote from her

colleagues. Did she deserve it? Of course, she did.

Will she be able to be a strong influence on Foust

and be able to help her adjust to the position? Of

course, she will. Here is the problem.

In two years we have another election where

three seats will be up for grabs. Howard and Jim

Hartnett will be termed out and Jeff Ira has

not announced if he will seek re-election. So the

scenario could go like this. What if none of the three

are running or let’s say for the sake of argument

just two of them are not going to be on the Council

anymore and we get two new council members with

no experience. Who will be appointed Mayor? Who

has been in training if you will as Vice Mayor to

take over? That is a problem. One can not just take

over as the Council’s figurehead unless they have

experience or have someone immediately under

them to assist them. Almost certainly Pierce would

be asked to take over again – that would not be a bad

thing either - as Mayor and Bain or Aguirre tapped

as Vice Mayor. One has to wonder what message

the council quorum was sending those two by their

vote? Just wondering.

. . .

The Hometown Holidays event put on by the

Downtown Business Group was a huge success.

The streets were packed all day with visitors

enjoying the ice sculptures, snow lot, Santa visits,

children’s play area, food and art vendor and of

course the parade and outstanding fireworks. Many

businesses were reporting that the day was one of

if not the most profitable day they have had during

the past year. That is welcoming news to those

who have been suffering of late and encouraging

to those planning events for next year. Keith and

Nina Kadera organized the event and should be

commended for their efforts in pulling together the

group’s membership to put on the event.

. . .

San Mateo County Manager John Maltbie recently

announced that the county will face a $25 million

deficit next year, and to curb the financial hit, he

informed his department heads that all hiring

would cease immediately and will stay in effect

indefinitely. There are over 500 vacant positions

or 9 percent overall job vacancy rate. The county’s

last hiring freeze was in 2002. The move means

that there will be no terminated positions for now

– welcomed news for employees this holiday season.

The main problem in the complicated financial

scenario seems to be salary growth. During the past

five years revenues in the county have grown by

$17.5 million or 71 percent annually. During that

same time, salaries and benefits have grown 32.8

million or 8.4 percent annually. The county’s overall

budget is somewhere around $1.7 billion with the

heath department leading budget allocations with

50.1 million. I don’t know about you, but that does

not sound like very good planning and forecasting

to me. It seems imminent that employees will have

to be sacrificed in the future to control spending.

Wouldn’t you think?

Just as the freeze was announced, new salaries for

county heads have gone up 3 percent. Based on the

increase allotted to the appointed department heads,

five of the county’s top elected officials will get

raises next year effective January 1, 2008. Leading

the pack, District Attorney James Fox will see his

bi-weekly paycheck rise to $9,860.81. The rest in the

order of highest salaries are: Sheriff Greg Monks

$7,470.38, Assessor Warren Slocum $6,422.26,

Controller Tom Huening $6,123.97, Treasure-Tax

collector Lee Buffington $5,658.41 and Coroner

Robert J. Foucrault $4,798.15. Many might suggest

that the increases should not happen at this time

of financial unstability. But I disagree. Those who

work hard should be compensated for doing so

when they have an agreement to do so. Those that

determine when and who will get raises should be

the ones we hold accountable.

. . .

Even though they are strapped for cash Caltrain is

at it again. They will be paying nearly $3 million

on fencing along its railroad ways to keep people

from crossing illegally. Now, I have never been one

that supports such spending and to be quite candid

think it is a total waste of monies, creates blight and

even divides neighborhoods in some areas. Deaths

along tracks have decreased this year (7) from a

high in 2006 of 16. It is hard to tell if the fencing has

assisted in the decrease or more available suicide

prevention efforts have. I just can’t see fencing as a

very large deterrent since you can just walk a little

further and find a way onto the tracks. But if that

makes officials feel good, so be it.

. . .

Redwood City Industrial Saltworks (RCIS) held

its Holiday Open House at the Seaport Conference

Center. Sharing in the spirits were: former Mayor

and current Councilwoman Barbara Pierce and

her husband Jerry, Planning Commissioner Nancy

Radcliffe, Port commissioner Lewis Miller, County

School Board member Memo Morantes, Sequoia

Union High School Trustee Loraine Rumley,

community leaders: Keith and Nina Kadera, Bob

Hoffman, Bob and Irene Bryant, and Alyn Beals.

RCIS is gearing up to hold public informational

meetings in 2008 and inform our community of

the plans for the Cargil Salt property. I for one

am looking forward to hearing what they have to

present and maybe finally seeing the reality for

many of being able to own a home in Redwood City.

Wouldn’t that be nice?

This month’s Chamber of Commerce Business

Holiday mixer was held at the new United American

Bank on Broadway. Enjoying the new offices

and cheer were: former Mayors Dani Gasparini

and Georgi LaBerge, former councilman Paul

Sanfillipo, County Supervisor Rich Gordon,

Port Commissioner Larry Aiken, School Board

members Chris Bohl, Loraine Rumley, Memo

Morantes. Business leaders: Paula Uccelli, Memo

Morantes, Pat Becker, Alyn Beals, Cheryl

Angeles, former San Carlos Mayor Sylvia Nelson,

Mary Mortensen, Katherine Fraiser, Claudette

Woods, Warren Dale, Dave Karow, and Clem

Maloney. Frank Bartaldo who was formally at Bay

Area Bank, has been tapped as the Executive Vice

President of the new location.

He knows if you’ve been sleeping, he know if your

awake, he knows if you’ve been bad or good – but

does he know who has been naughty or nice this

year in our community? Well I do and here goes my

annual list.

On the other hand, since my turkeys of the year

came out last month and I am not feeling the need

to hold anyone accountable this Holiday season, I

am just doing the nice thing because I am feeling

so incredibly blessed – okay elected officials you

can breath. I want to acknowledge a few people

that have really impressed or have been good this

year. The Redwood City Firefighters Association

for not only helping Abigail Mendoza but for

getting involved in our community. Same with the

Police Athletic League led by Alpio Barbara, Pete

and Ginny Hughes for all their work at Casa de

Redwood, people who help children and adults a

like, volunteers for all the other non-profit groups

that pull our community together and help others

in need. All of you out there who feel good about

your lives and just want to make it better for you

and those around you! I salute you all! And to all a


Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to everyone!

Thanks for reading.

As I was saying . . .

. . .

. . .

Author! Author! A Passion for Children’s

Literature at Orion School By Judy Buchan, Contributing Writer

Did you know that Orion Elementary School hosts nationally known

children’s authors and illustrators in an annual book signing festival every year?

You do now.

Sharon Levin talked about another of Redwood City’s best-kept secrets, the

upcoming Orion Elementary School’s Sixth Annual Children’s Authors and

Illustrators Festival.

“Every year we have ‘lightbulb moments’ where you can see children ‘get

it,’ said Levin with a smile in her voice. The 2008 event is expected to turn

on more lighbulbs for the children.

“Oh! That author’s like me,” they might say, or “I can be an author/

illustrator,” or “Wow, this guy wasn’t a reader at my age and now look at him.

I don’t have to see myself as a nonreader forever.”

“Kids don’t understand that real

people write and illustrate books,”

Levin said. The idea for the festival,

now in its sixth year, was based on

a similar program in Clayton. “It’s

intended to break down barriers

between kids and the authors and

illustrators,” Levin added.

The festival is set for Saturday, Feb.

2, from 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at Orion

School, 815 Allerton St., in Redwood

City. Admission is free and the event

is open to the public. Books and

food will be available for purchase.

Simultaneous Spanish translation and

sign language interpretation will be

available at all the presentations.

Each year, the festival has hosted

six to eight authors/illustrators.

Every classroom will have an author

or illustrator for book signing and

presentations. Authors and illustrators

donate their time to the festival.

Second-grade students will be

docents for the authors and illustrators.

And Levin noted that the children

take time to research the authors.

She recalled one student who recognized an author he had researched by

remembering his favorite food as a kid — macaroni and cheese. “They had a

mac-and-cheese conversation,” she said, laughing.

The Orion teachers recognize the

importance of the festival as well.

“Our teachers so love the insight into

the books and the writing process.

Without that, we wouldn’t be able to

have such a successful event at our

small school,” Levin said.

Presenters at the upcoming festival include Madeleine Dunphy, Candace

Fleming, Elissa Haden Guest, Matthew Holm, Francisco Jimenez, Elisa

Kleven, Katherine Tillotson and Caldecott award–winning artist Eric

Rohmann. A national award, the Caldecott medal is given for the best picture

book of the year.

Kleven, a resident of Albany, Calif., has participated in the festival for

the past six years. “The children get the chance to meet the creators of their

books, to get excited about new books and to see and learn how illustrators

and authors work,” Kleven said. “We authors get to meet the wonderful

people we make our books for, to see their amazing art projects and to spend

the day surrounded by fellow book lovers. Orion’s love for literature and

“Did you know that Orion Elementary School hosts

nationally known children’s authors and illustrators

in an annual book signing festival every year?”

appreciation of authors, illustrators and children shines through in every way.

The fair is always a deeply life-affirming event!” She added, “We are served

a delicious lunch as well.”

Kleven’s most memorable moment of the festival focuses on banners made

for the authors. “Each year an author is presented with a banner the children

have made, celebrating his or her work. Whenever I see ‘my’ banner, my

heart sings, and since we get to take the banners home, and since I hang mine

around my house and studio, my heart sings all year round,” she said.

Levin’s heart seemed to sing as well as she talked about the Orion

community. “We love our diverse community,” Levin said. “And we

understand that not all are readers.” She recalled that Jimenez, now a

professor at Santa Clara, wrote a picture book about life as a child of migrant

workers that “had a big impact on the

kids.” Further, Levin noted that on

a field trip to Sacramento, the Orion

group by chance met a Hispanic

children’s author. Hispanic mothers

talked with the author and thanked

her for her work.

The festival happens, Levin

continued, because of the “passion of

the parents for children’s literature.

If the parents didn’t buy into this, it

would not happen.”

That passion is important to

Orion principal Cathy Okubo. “I

love reading. Everyone always teases

me because I often say, ‘Oh, that is

my favorite book,’ when a book is

mentioned,” she said. “I guess I have

many favorite books. Words and

pictures stay with me. I am always

making text to the world and self

connections,” she added.

Okubo talked about an

experience with her daughter that

perfectly describes her love for

literature. “Last night my daughter

was reading ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’

and asked me what I thought the significance of the mockingbird was. My

whole body lit up and we began to discuss our different ideas. The more

excited I got, the more excited she got. It was synergy. Books are friends.

They keep me company when I need

a friend, they take me to other worlds

and they let me imagine. Reading is a

beautiful experience. I want everyone

to love and cherish books, to be able

to quote them, to make them their

friend,” she said.

She also sees the festival as a “major event because it helps foster the love

of reading and books. Classrooms do in-depth studies of the authors and

illustrators, learn firsthand how people become authors and illustrators, and

get hands-on, personal experience with authors and illustrators.”

Levin herself also has a longstanding passion for children’s literature and

is one of the driving forces behind the event. “I started reviewing children’s

books when my oldest daughter (now an eighth-grader at Kennedy) was in

preschool,” she said. “I wrote a column called Book Corner that had some

reviews but mainly focused on the numerous children’s literature events in

the Bay Area. When my younger daughter started Little Hands Preschool,

they started carrying the column as well.

“As people left the schools (children ‘graduated’),” she continued, “they

asked if they could use the column in their elementary school newsletters,

and it grew from there. Book Corner goes out to parents, teachers, librarians,

bookstore owners, authors, illustrators, schools and the review Web site Since it is no longer Bay Area–centric, it only has reviews,”

she said.

“I want everyone to love and cherish books, to be able

to quote them, to make them their friend.”

“However, there are still lots of children’s lit events in the area, and I

love to spread the word about them,” she told me. “So, a few years ago, I

started an e-mail list (cost and obligation free) that keeps people in the loop

about local children’s lit events and some events in the larger (national and

international) world of children’s literature. There are over 500 people on this

list. Again, a mix of parents, children’s literature ‘nuts,’ teachers, authors,

illustrators, bookstore owners, etc. I have no problem saying to a stranger,

‘You need to be on my list.’ Once, while waiting in line for the bathroom at

my favorite storytelling festival, I signed up three new people — they’re still

on the list,” she said. (Author’s note: Now that’s dedication!)

Levin also serves on the Notable Children’s Books in the Language Arts

Committee for the National Council of Teachers of English.

Levin told me that the Redwood City Public Library would like the festival

to be a joint effort, but “I told [library director] Dave Genesy no.” Citing

space needs for the festival that can’t be accommodated by the library, she

is very grateful for the display case advertising the event that is set up every

January in the library’s children’s room.

She also goes to other schools, meeting with school staff to update them

on what’s new in children’s literature and to publicize the festival. Schools

help with publicity by advertising the event in their school newsletters. These

visits pay off — schools in East Palo Alto are planning to attend the festival.

And you should, too. Bring your children and immerse them in the

wonderful world of reading.

Sharon Levin


Your Redwood City


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Community Interest

Senior Center Gains National


Concurrent with its 25th anniversary, Redwood

City’s Veterans Memorial Senior Center is

celebrating its recognition as the first nationally

accredited senior center in San Mateo County,

only the third center in California to reach this

status and just the 148th to be accredited out of

the 15,000 senior centers across America. The

senior center’s accreditation status is bestowed by

the National Institute of Senior Centers (NISC), a

unit of the National Council on the Aging.

With this recognition, the Veterans Memorial

Senior Center is considered to be in the top 1

percent of all senior centers nationwide and

is commended for its vision, collaborative

relationships, volunteer programs, outreach

programs, wide range of health and fitness

programs and other supportive services.

City Wins ‘Diamond Award’ for

Courthouse Square and Events

Redwood City has been recognized by the

Peninsula Arts Council with its annual Diamond

Award for the city’s vision in developing the

Courthouse Square, which has permanently

enhanced the downtown business area and has

created a vibrant artistic forum for the public’s


The Peninsula Arts Council says that Redwood

Cultural Events

Art on Broadway

Resident Artists Ring in the New Year

Champagne reception: Friday, Jan. 4, 6–8 p.m.


Exhibition dates: Jan. 3–Feb. 27

Redwood City Art Center

2625 Broadway, Redwood City

Come meet the artists at Art on Broadway and

ring in the New Year with a champagne reception.

Featured artists will be resident Art Center artists

and gallery partners Duke Collins, Cherry Harborne,

Wendy Lee, Linda Roth and Jeanne Schapp.

For its January and February exhibitions, Art

on Broadway spotlights resident artists from

the Redwood City Art Center as well as gallery

partners. Gift cards and small retail items are

available for purchase. And, while visiting the

gallery, don’t forget to take a look around the Art

Center. You may even be inspired to sign up for a

class from one of the center’s talented instructors.

San Mateo County History


City’s expansive schedule of events such as Art

on the Square, Dancing on the Square, Movies on

the Square, Music on the Square and the Friday

Night Art Walk are now an integral part of the

downtown experience, for the entire community

to enjoy for free.

The combination of the City of Redwood City

and the Redwood City Public Library with its

many hosted readings, musical performances

and film nights, plus the cultural offerings of the

San Mateo County Historical Association, has

created an “artistic synergy that has enlivened the

downtown environment and has made Redwood

City a year-round cultural destination.”

Congratulations all around!

Ash Kickers Smoking Cessation

Class for the New Year

Having trouble kicking the habit? Well, you’re not

alone. Sign up for Breathe California’s six-session

Ash Kickers Smoking Cessation Class and start

your path to a healthier life. Led by a trained

facilitator, the class utilizes group support and

offers participants resources and strategies to quit

and stay quit. We’ll help you every step of the way

as you work to become smoke-free. Our January

classes will be held as follows:

Sequoia Wellness Center

749 Brewster Ave.

Monday evenings, Jan. 7–Feb. 25, 6:30–8 p.m.

Fair Oaks Community Center

2200 Broadway, Redwood City


$2–$4; free for children ages 5 and under

Tuesday–Sunday, 10 a.m.–4 p.m.

The museum is located in the Old Courthouse

with its historic dome. Its collections include

horse-drawn carriages, models, railroads from

Caltrans and the Ocean Shore Railroad, relics

from San Mateo’s past and lithographic art dating

from 1875.

Ongoing Exhibits

The Great Rotunda — The stained-glass dome

of the rotunda thought to be the largest in a

Pacific Coast public building is the architectural

highlight of the museum building.

Courtroom A — The oldest courtroom in San Mateo

County has been restored to its appearance in 1910.

Nature’s Bounty — This exhibit gallery explores

how the oldest people of the Peninsula used

the natural resources of the area and how these

resources were used to help build San Francisco

after the discovery of gold in 1849.

Journey to Work — This exhibit gallery shows

how transportation transformed San Mateo

2600 Middlefield Road

Thursday evenings, Jan. 10–Feb. 7, 5–6:30 p.m.

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What an Opportunity With

Redwood City

If you are interested and involved in your

community, there is a really great opportunity

to work for Redwood City in a new part-time

position. You may be interested, or perhaps you

know a good candidate. Send them City Hall way!

As part of our community-building efforts, the

city manager’s office is adding the position of

Neighborhood Liaison Coordinator. This will be

10 to 20 hours a week and will focus on helping to

strengthen relationships between the city and its

neighborhoods, and among neighbors themselves.

This is going to be a really fun, dynamic

position, kind of on the front lines of our

community-building, at the neighborhood

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facilitating trainings and events and activities,

supporting neighbors in their efforts to make

connections, making presentations, writing and

distributing materials, and having a great time

doing it!

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in that position or know someone who might be a

good match.

County from a frontier to suburbs.

Carriage Display — An exhibit of the museum’s

30 horse-drawn vehicles.

Charles Parsons Gallery — An exhibit of the 23

historical model ships created by Charles Parsons

of San Carlos.

Politics, Crime and Law Enforcement — The

Atkinson Meeting Room includes the Walter Moore

Law Enforcement Collection of historic badges.

San Mateo County History Makers:

Entrepreneurs Who Changed the World — The

exhibit chronicles the entrepreneurs who made

San Mateo County internationally known.

Land of Opportunity — The exhibit tells the story

of the diverse people who came to the area and

explores how different groups faced hardships

and discrimination.

Living the California Dream — The exhibit

depicts the development of the suburban culture

of San Mateo County.

Special Exhibit

The Celtic Tiger: The Irish Economic Miracle

The exhibit explores how the Bay Area has

participated in Ireland’s current economic boom.


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Rosanne Foust

An Amazing Force of Vibrant Energy,

Opportunity And Success.

By Valerie Harris

Special to The Spectrum

Rosanne Foust was sworn in as mayor of

Redwood City on Monday, Nov. 26. A resident of

Redwood City, she is married to fellow council

member Jim Hartnett. She first met Hartnett when

she joined the Chamber of Commerce in the late

1990s, and they wed in August 2006. Together

they have four children: her two daughters, Julia,

12, and Lydia, 7, and Jim’s two boys, Jake, 20, and

Josh, 22.

But there is so much more to Foust than just being

a wife, a mom and a mayor. She’s an amazing

force of vibrant energy, opportunity and success.

Foust was born and raised in Shelton, Conn.

She attended Stonehill College, a small, private

Catholic college in Massachusetts, and graduated

with a bachelor’s degree in international studies

and economics.

After graduation, Foust worked for the World

Trade Center. She learned of a company called

Alsace Development International, United States,

an operation of the regional government of

Alsace, France. Foust said, “They were opening

a Boston office in the beginning of 1988, and

they found out that I spoke French. I knew their

competitors, I knew how economic development

worked, and so they hired me and brought me to


The company first moved Foust to Los Angeles,

where she lived from 1988 to 1995. Foust said,

“I was in product development. I helped U.S.

companies that were setting up operations in that

part of France. I went there three times a year.”

During her stay in Los Angeles, she also obtained

a certificate in executive management from UCLA.

In 1995, Foust transferred to the Bay Area. She

said, “The French had always wanted a Silicon

Valley office. My first husband is an engineer,

and he worked for Hughes Aircraft and Space

Systems Loral. That, combined with the French

wanting a Silicon Valley–based office, brought

us to this area. Plus, we thought it would be

a good place to raise children. Redwood City

was halfway between Silicon Valley and San

Francisco. I needed to be near an international

airport because of my travel.”

When Alsace closed its U.S. operations this

year, Foust had worked for the company for 20

years. As executive vice president and treasurer,

she was essentially the head of North American


Foust joined the Redwood City Chamber of

Commerce in the late 1990s. She eventually

joined the chamber’s board of directors in 2000.

That year seems to be when the community

activism bug bit her. She joined the Redwood

Shores Community Association and worked on

the Redwood Shores Child Care Task Force. The

group was made up of Dick Claire and Ira Ruskin,

who were both council members at the time, and

Corinne Centeno, who is the city’s current Parks,

Recreation and Community Services director.

Foust recalled, “I had a five-year-old and I

was pregnant with my second child, and we

didn’t have a lot of child care available to the

community. So I helped start what is now the

Redwood Shores Child Care. I was also appointed

to the Redwood City Planning Commission in the

summer of 2000. I loved planning, because with

my background in economic development, there

was a fit. And I was getting my master’s in public

administration at the time, so it all came together.

It wasn’t a grand plan. People always ask me

“Life offers you a lot of opportunities. And it

really depends on what your interests are,

where you think you can do something to

effect change.”

about that. Life offers you a lot of opportunities.

And it really depends on what your interests are,

where you think you can do something to effect

change. There are a lot of opportunities that come

your way. And it depends on timing.”

She continued, “I said this the night I became

mayor: The key to succeeding is listening to

people and hard work. Those two things are not

complicated. People want you to work hard. And

they can tell if you do or not. People are very

intelligent. We have an incredibly intelligent

community in Redwood City. They ask a lot of

good questions, and they have high expectations,

as they should.”

When she first considered running for office,

Foust explored her options by talking to various

people in the community. She spoke with people

at the Chamber of Commerce, Dick Claire (who

was still on the council) and former mayors and

council members Barbara Pierce, Ruskin and

Dani Gaspirini. Foust said, “They all asked me to

think about it. I talked to my family and my job,

because I also needed their buy-in. My boss was

mayor of his small village for 12 years in France.

Because my company was a quasi-governmental

private organization, fully funded by the French

regional authorities, the people who ran our

organization were all politicians. Some were

senators, some were county commissioners, so I

was familiar, but I had to make sure that this run

for office was acceptable. It was.”

During this time, Foust also completed her

master’s degree in public administration from

Notre Dame in Belmont.

Foust first ran for office in 2003 and was elected

to the Redwood City City Council. She was reelected

in 2007 and was then elected mayor by

her fellow council members. She deems it a great

honor, because her fellow members chose her as

their leader for the next two years.

Foust’s excitement at facing the challenge of

being mayor is infectious. She enthusiastically

described her goals: “It’s all about opportunity,

and that’s what I want to focus on as mayor.

… Every mayor has a different focus or a

different area that they are interested in.” As she

considered what her focus would be, she asked

herself, “Where could I really make people think

about their communities?”

In a flash of brilliance, Foust seized upon

Redwood City pride,” which would afford

Redwood City the perfect opportunity to show

off its excellence. Foust believes that people can

have pride in every aspect of our community.

She said, “We can have pride in our downtown.

We can have pride in our neighborhoods. We

can have pride in our communities, in our plot of

land, our front porch. There are so many different

areas where we can have pride in where you live

and where you interact … pride in our business

community. It really can hit every facet of our

community. We can have pride from our children,

from our youth to our seniors. We have an

amazing senior center. We have an amazing city

government and city staff. We have a great Public

Works. It’s pride! It’s Redwood City pride!”

Foust is eager to see where Redwood City goes

in the next three years. There are many changes

facing the city. There is the general plan, the

saltworks project and downtown businesses. She

is eager to start leading the city into a new era,

and a new era of pride!

The key to succeeding is listening to people

and hard work. Those two things are not

complicated. People want you to work

hard. And they can tell if you do or not.”

“We have an incredibly intelligent

community in Redwood City. They ask a

lot of good questions, and they have high

expectations, as they should.”



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News Briefs

Accused Pimp Slapped

With Criminal Charge

Redwood City police arresting a 24-year-old man

for allegedly pimping out his auto body repair

shop coworker discovered phone videos detailing

his love for the job and a photo of a woman titled

“LoveDisPimping,” according to the District

Attorney’s Office.

Prosecutors charged Nicholas Geranios with

one felony count of pimping and he remains out

of custody on his own recognizance.

Redwood City police arrested Geranios after

responding to a Craigslist post and allegedly

arranging a sex act for $250 at a local motel. After

she was arrested, the woman, according to police,

pointed out Geranios as her pimp and explained

that he convinced her to act as his prostitute.

An examination of Geranios’ cell phone

turned up videos in which he speaks of his love

for pimping and a photo of a woman labeled

“LoveDisPimping,” police reported.

Police also reported Geranios rented the

Redwood City motel room for the prostitute and

had a box of 20 condoms in his possession when


Geranios has four prior criminal cases in San

Mateo County, according to court records.

Bair Island Closed up to

Five Years

Fans of the Bair Island trails will be barred from

visiting for three to five years because ongoing

habitat restoration has turned the former salt pond

into a “veritable construction site,” as one million

cubic yards of dirt is hauled in to shore up levees

and create a tidal wetland.

Up to 200 truckloads of dirt daily are entering

the site as well as large pieces of construction

equipment — all reasons why public access is

banned until further notice, according to the U.S.

Fish and Wildlife Service.

A number of reported vandalism and

trespassing incidents also led to the decision

announced a few weeks back. The USFWS even

reported that some people have ridden all-terrain

vehicles through the construction area and cut

through barrier chains.

Dirt hauling began in July, and officials wanted

to keep some of the site open, sectioning off a

portion of the trails during construction. However,

unsafe practices and illegal acts prompted them to

drop the option all together.

Bair Island, a 3,000-acre area in Redwood City,

is part of the Don Edwards San Francisco Bay

National Wildlife Refuge. The island was diked in

the late 1800s for grazing and later converted into

salt evaporation ponds.

Inner Bair Island contains

the trail loop that draws

the public.

An estimated 250,000 people visit the island

annually to jog, hike and appreciate the wildlife.

Those quarter-million visitors, however, will have

to put their trips on hold temporarily while the

USFWS works on improvements.

The current construction is the first renovation

phase to return the island to its former wildlife

habitat and create new tidal wetlands and

trails. Plans also include observation platforms,

expanded parking and restrooms.

To reach the end goal, more than 1 million

cubic yards of dirt will raise the island’s elevation

and shore up levees. The dirt comes from a

number of sources, according to the USFWS, and

is monitored to ensure it is clean. Officials are

hopeful they can use land from the dredging of

the Redwood City port’s channel.

Once complete, wildlife officials expect the

repaired habitat to house a number of species

including the endangered California clapper rail

and salt marsh harvest mouse.

Father Accused of

Whipping Sons With Cord

Pleads Guilty

A Redwood City father accused of whipping his

two young sons with an electrical cord entered a

plea bargain during his pretrial conference and

will now face sentencing in January, according to

a deputy district attorney. Lavadis Henderson, 35,

pleaded guilty to two felony counts of infliction

of corporeal punishment on a child resulting in

a traumatic condition, Deputy District Attorney

Sarah Boxer said.

Henderson will face up to 12 years and eight

months in jail for charges he struck his 9- and

11-year-old sons on the buttocks with a vacuum

cleaner extension cord. The boys’ injuries were

reported to the San Mateo County Sheriff’s

Office by Menlo Park’s Garfield Charter

School officials, who were investigating graffiti

vandalism at the school that was allegedly done

by one of the boys, according to Boxer. The

sheriff’s office then notified Child Protective

Services and Henderson was arrested. The

injuries were reportedly inflicted between

January and May of this year, according to Boxer.

Henderson, who has four prior criminal

convictions — two for rape, one for sodomy on

a child under age 14 and another for lewd acts on

a child under age 14, according to Boxer — had

been ordered by a Sacramento County court to

have no contact with the boys and their mother,

but they were found to have been living with

him in his Redwood City apartment. Henderson

remains in custody on $600,000 bail. His

sentencing is scheduled for Jan. 25.



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A Taste of Oaxaca on Main Street

By Dale McKee

Special to The Spectrum

There’s a new taste in town, one many of you may not have tried. And it’s

right down on Main Street, with bright décor and fresh smiles waiting to

greet you. I’m talking about Black Bean Cuisine, which opened its doors just

three months ago.

Having grown up in California, I’ve been long accustomed to — and in

love with — good Mexican food. But the cuisine at Black Bean is something

different, a flavor I’ve honestly never before encountered in my travels. It’s a

very specific regional cuisine native to Oaxaca (wah-HAH’-kuh). And, after

sampling this flavor, all I can say is: Oaxaca, where have you been all my life?

Even before I sampled the food, though, I had a great impression of the

establishment. It’s brightly painted but not loud, with high, elevated ceilings

and displays of regional art adorning the walls. The owner, Teresa Barrita,

was pleasant and warm. She, her husband and children all help run the

restaurant, putting in their love and attention. And it shows.

Barrita immigrated to San Jose when she was 4 years old and grew up in

the Bay Area, attending both San Mateo High and the College of San Mateo.

She and her husband, Fidel, have been married 25 years. He’s a native of

Oaxaca, and it was during a trip to visit his family that she first fell in love

with the culture there. In Oaxaca, she explained, they still hold to the old

traditions, including art, food, clothing and annual cultural festivals.

The culture is so rich [in Oaxaca],” Barrita said. “They have their own

dialect. They still dress in their own style. They keep their traditions.” She

hopes to introduce more of Oaxacan culture to Redwood City over time.

Barrita’s family lives in San Mateo but has run a jewelry shop on

Middlefield Road for 20 years now. On opening Black Bean in Redwood

City, she said, “A lot of people around here know a little bit about Oaxaca.

We’ve noticed that.” Another factor was the bustling, booming Redwood

City community. It actually took a year for the work to be completed on

Black Bean, but Barrita notes that the city was very helpful in the process.

The family put a lot of work into the project themselves, helping shape the

restaurant into something they could be proud of.

Oaxacan style isn’t popular here — yet — but it’s something Barrita

is hoping to introduce to the community. There’s a flavor here that is yet

untapped in the area.

Black Bean has all the Mexican staples — burritos, tacos, enchiladas —

that one would expect, although these have a tangy and delightful Oaxacan

twist. But there’s so much more. One notable difference from what I’m used

to is the black bean style, hence the name over the door. “North of Mexico

City, they use pinto beans,” Barrita explained, “and south, they use black

beans.” And these aren’t your plain black beans like you’ll find in a salad bar

or in a Trader Joe’s frozen burrito. They are cooked perfectly and blended in,

infusing the tostadas, for example, with a rich flavor and tang.

My first sample of the cuisine was the Tinga tostada. They say the proof is

in the pudding — and in this case, the truth is in the tostada. It’s excellent, with

a rich, crisp shell and tangy beans with chicken, topped with fresh green fixings.

And that was just the warm-up. Next I sampled the torta, a toasted

sandwich with meat and homemade orange sauce, with just the right blend

of spices. I think this would be a great one for the kids and easy to eat with

your hands, not to mention a treat for your tongue! One thing I’ll note about

the cuisine: it’s rich and flavorful — and certainly filling — but it’s not laden

down with lard like at some of the more commercial chains in the Bay Area.

The food is crisp, clean and refreshing.

I also got a chance to sample the enchilada, enfrijolada and memolita, all

of which were excellent. They were zesty and flavorful, with that black bean

tang but, again, not heavy or fatty. This isn’t a sushi bar, but I have to add

that the presentation was nice as well, with beautiful white oval platters and

dishes and nice arrangement on the plate.

All of this was delicious, and I also managed a taste of the chille relleno

de picadillo, which was a real treat. With sour cream topping a lightlyfried

wrapping and filled with flavorful chile and cheese, this was a highly

recommended menu item. By the time the mole tamale came out, I had cried

uncle, but I took some home and sampled it later with my family.

Even with small samples and a big appetite, I couldn’t hope to try

everything on the menu, but one thing remained consistent in everything I

tried. The flavors had a distinct theme, the regional style that I’ve come to

learn is typical of Oaxaca. This isn’t to say they all tasted the same — far

from it! — but there was a real, unique difference from what I have grown

used to over the years.

So the next time you’re downtown, stop by Black Bean Cuisine at 847

Main St. and give it a taste. The food is well worth it, and the prices won’t

pinch into your Christmas shopping budget, either. With a warm, friendly

atmosphere and pleasant décor, it’s a great place for a business luncheon or a

place to take the whole family. If you’re in a hurry or want food to go, Black

Bean can accommodate you there, too, and they also do catering. Give it a

try, and be prepared for a tasty treat that is truly different!

Owner, Teresa Barrita

Teresa Barrita with Writer Dale McKee



Happy Holidays from

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Police/Fire Annual Toy and Book Drive

Each year, the Redwood City Police Activities League (PAL) Christmas Toy and

Book Drive has brought the holiday spirit right to the doorstep of many needy

families in Redwood City.

In conjunction with the Police Officers Association and Firefighters Association,

and with help from the Fair Oaks Community Center and a corps of volunteers, this

annual event has become a welcome tradition in Redwood City.

This year, 50 local businesses filled 60 donation barrels with over 12,000 toys and

provided them to about 900 needy families. Deliveries took place with Santa Claus

in a police car or a fire engine arriving at a selected home in our community to hand

out the presents, giving the kids a thrill they’ll long remember. One thing that makes

this program special is the collection and distribution of new books as well as toys.

Each child served receives two gifts, a book, a stuffed animal and several stocking

stuffers, all of which bring a holiday sparkle to their eyes.

A wrapping party was held Tuesday, Dec. 11, at the Red Morton Community

Center on Roosevelt Avenue. Over 250 community-spirited residents, young and

older, dropped by to help spread the holiday joy!

The following Redwood City businesses provided food for all the volunteers!

MiMe’s Cafe

Nob Hill Foods

Woodside Deli

Amici’s East Coast Pizzeria

Bakers Square

Erik’s DeliCafé

Chevys Fresh Mex

Karlita’s Tacos

5th Quarter Pizza

Al’s Fish and Chips

Fresh Choice

Amelia’s Mexican Restaurant

Gold Rush Brick Oven Pizza

La Azteca Mexicatessen

Mountain Mike’s Pizza

Yan Can

Main Street Coffee Roasting Company

Extreme Pizza

A few of the participants were captured in photos.

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Shop Redwood City : For the Holidays!

Redwood City shoppers will tell you exactly what they think of our local

businesses. During this holiday season, listen to what they have to say about

the fine businesses below. Shop local and shop often!

Auto Care:

Redwood General Tire – 1630 Broadway – “Their personal service is a rare

find. I had to fully re-tire both cars, and they were very helpful. I’ve been back

for tire repairs, too. They have a comfortable waiting area with lots of 49ers

memorabilia. They will be my first and only stop when I need to re-tire again!”

Eating and Catering:

Canyon Inn – 587 Canyon Road – “Lots of different burgers to choose from,

as well as other sandwiches, daily specials, pizzas, etc. The mushroom burger

was very good. Could be some of the best fries I’ve had in a long time. And

I love all of the 49ers and football stuff. Oh, and the bathroom was clean and


Diving Pelican Cafe – 650 Bair Island Road, Suite 102 – “Sit on the patio

overlooking the water. Depending on the time of year, you’ll see all sorts of

waterfowl. My favorite is the Mediterranean salad: seasonal greens, a nice

light dressing, Kalamata olives, feta cheese, crispy croutons, freshly grilled

chicken and green chiles. A great breakfast is the Eggs Bennett: freshly

made Hollandaise sauce over two poached eggs with smoked ham on wholewheat

English muffins. This is truly a very comfortable, laid-back, warm and

friendly place to enjoy a meal.”

Encore Performance Catering – 2992 Spring St. – Owner Dave Hyman’s

menu is eight pages of mouthwatering suggestions for everything from

continental breakfasts to formal dinners, and Hyman is quick to offer

additional possibilities to fit any. His business products are nearly 100

percent recyclable and leftovers are contributed to St. Anthony’s Padua

Dining Room. Call Dave at 650-365-3731.

Little India – 917 Main St. – “There are good restaurants. There are bad

restaurants. There are okay restaurants. Then there are those places, the

magic ones. Little India is one of those places. The appetizers are great (the

spicy wings especially). The dal is uniformly excellent. The various curries

are always good. The tikka masala chicken is an all-time favorite. And don’t

forget the mango lassi! Go. Eat. Be happy.”

Lutticken’s Deli and Catering – 3535 Alameda de las Pulgas, Menlo Park

– “Absolutely delicious and generous sandwiches. I tried their turkey and avocado,

and boy, was I excited when they used a whole half of an avocado and carved

up an actual oven-roasted turkey!”

Margaritas Mexican Restaurant – 2098 Broadway – “Their chips and salsa

are great, and their agua fresca selections are usually really good. Their

taco salads are so ginormous and tasty. But the true standout is the huevos

rancheros. Words can’t do it justice. Huevos en fuego. It’s phenomenal!”

New Kapadokia – 2399 Broadway – “I was amazed at the quality of the

food and reasonable pricing. The service is 5 stars. I decided on a big cup of

delicious lentil soup and the lunch wrap with tahini sauce, onions, tomatoes

and parsley. It was very relaxing to have Turkish coffee after. The waiter also

gave us a taste of the baklava: layers of flaky filo dough filled with crushed

walnuts, baked and brushed with a homemade simple syrup flavored with

lemon. Delicious.”


Arthur Murray Dance Studio – 2065 Broadway – Put a little fun in your life!

Whatever your goal — meeting people, gaining confidence or preparing

for the first dance at your wedding — the expert instructors can design a

customized program just for you! Choose from a wide variety of dances:

foxtrot, merengue, waltz, swing, hustle, rumba, cha-cha, tango, salsa and more.

Their professionals can teach and dance at your special event. Contact Arthur

Murray to get started today. Your first lesson is always complimentary!

Financial Institutions:

Capital Mortgage Lending – 805 Veterans Blvd., #202 – Lourdes Carini

is still closing loans, although it has become a bit challenging as the real

estate market goes through a reality phase. Now more than ever you need an

experienced and reliable mortgage broker who understands what is taking

place. Carini’s ability to place loans with over 50 lenders is the edge you need

in this changing market. Pick up the phone and call 650-362-2700.

Edward Jones – 702 Marshall St., #515 – For decades, Edward Jones believed

in building relationships through face-to-face interaction and adherence to a

strategy of recommending quality investments that have proven themselves

over time. So does Investment Representative David Amann. He understands

that this approach might be considered unfashionable. But if it means helping

his clients achieve their financial goals, it’s an approach he plans to stick to.

Personal Improvement:

Redwood Massage & Sauna – 797 Arguello St. – “I found that the massage

therapists were knowledgeable and able to address my aches and sore muscles

effectively. The place itself is clean and unassuming. The establishment had

a homey feel. I would recommend this place for anyone who wants a good

therapeutic massage.”

Re:Juvenate Skin Care – 805 Veterans Blvd., Suite 140 – Together, owners

Sherna Madan, M.D., and Linda S. Moore, R.N., have more than 50 years in

the health care industry and over 10 years in the field of aesthetics. Both have

lived and worked in the community for the majority of those years. Whether

you are seeing a clinician for acne, sun damage, skin tightening, wrinkle

reduction or laser hair removal, the process starts with a complimentary

consultation. Call 650-261-0500 and mention The Spectrum Magazine.

Warren Street Chiropractic – 520 Warren St. – Timothy H. Lease, D.C., is

beginning his 22nd year of practice and has a very broad patient base, from

infants to folks in their 90s. Cases include work injury, personal injury,

carpal tunnel syndrome, plantar fasciitis, headaches, neck pain, back pain

and leg and arm pain. He is able to refer for second opinions or other therapy

if appropriate.


Lulu’s – 846 Main St. – Owner Nancy Radcliffe has taken 24 years of design

experience to create a collection of cards and gifts intermingled with eclectic

antique pieces, all affordably priced. Lulu’s carries everything from whimsical

candles to baby gifts that put a smile on your face.

St. Regal Jewelers – 850 Main St. – “This is a great jeweler! Phil, the owner,

is amazing. He crafted a ring on time and on budget. He has an incredible

eye for detail. I can’t say enough. I would never go anywhere else.”

Home Improvements:

Lewis Carpet Cleaners – 1.800.23.LEWIS – Founder Rick Lewis started

his business in 1985 out of his home, using a small, portable machine. Today,

Lewis successfully operates and manages an office/warehouse of six employees

and has five working vans, with future plans for expansion and growth. The

Lewis family is committed to the vision and success of our community,

devoting time, energy and services. Call and ask about their Spectrum

special to get 100 square feet of carpet cleaned for absolutely nothing.


Finance : Holidays Are Happier When You Control Spending

By David Amann

Special to The Spectrum

You enjoy giving presents to your loved ones, but if you go overboard with

your spending, you could find yourself swamped by credit card bills. Can you

avoid the “debt trap” and still be generous? Yes, if you make the right moves.

Consider the following suggestions.

Set a budget

Let’s face it: Budgeting is boring. You probably don’t do it during most of

the year, so why should you start at the holiday season? Because setting a

budget, and sticking to it, can be your best debt-busting friend. So before you

begin shopping, determine how much you can realistically afford to spend.

Once you’ve established some self-imposed limits, you’ll be surprised at how

creative you can be in finding nice gifts at reasonable prices.

Make a list

And check it twice. You may not have the luxury of basing your gift

decisions upon who has been naughty or nice this past year, but you do have

some control over who makes your final list. If you’re trying to save money,

you needn’t feel obligated to go beyond your immediate family and friends.

While you might really like to give gifts to everyone in your life, it just may

not be practical.

You’d better shop around

There’s never been a better time to be a comparison shopper. With added

competition from discount stores, many merchants are making concerted

efforts to keep their prices down. And you have the vast expanses of the

Internet to help compare prices on similar items. Here’s a hint, though: To be

a really smart shopper, you’ll want to start early.

Hit the sales

As you know, many retailers have big post-holiday sales to boost business

during January, typically a slow month. Why not take advantage of these

markdowns to buy presents for next year? By “stockpiling” gifts, you may be

able to significantly reduce your holiday budget for 2008.

Save throughout the year

Once the holiday shopping season is over, you may want to start saving for

next year’s gifts. By putting away even a modest amount of money each

month, you’ll have several hundred dollars built up when the holidays roll

around again. If you’re like most people, however, you might find it hard

to spare even $50 a month or so for a holiday gift fund. After all, you have

plenty of other bills and expenses in your life to deal with. And that’s why

you should “pay yourself first” by having the funds taken automatically from

your checking or savings account and placed in an investment account.* You

may earn only a modest interest rate, but you’ll be removing these dollars

from your normal channels of spending.

“De-stress” yourself

By following these basic suggestions, you can take a lot of the stress out of

the holiday season — and that may be the nicest gift you can give to yourself.

*A systematic investment plan does not assure a profit and does not protect

against loss in declining markets. Such a plan involves continuous investment

in securities regardless of fluctuating price levels of such securities; the

investor should consider the financial ability to continue the purchases

through periods of low price levels.

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Handyman Hints : A Pound of Cure

By August Murphy

Special to The Spectrum

You’ve inherited a Ming Dynasty vase from your beloved Aunt Bessie, and

you have it proudly displayed as the centerpiece in your living room curio

cabinet. Or maybe it’s the pair of Daffy and Donald Duck coffee mugs

created by your darling 7-year-old granddaughter, especially for you, in her

school ceramics class.

Both are immeasurably valuable in different ways. What a shame if both

were reduced to worthless rubble during an earthquake.

In light of the recent quakes fresh in our minds, many are stocking up

on water, food and batteries in anticipation of the “big one.” Others are

contracting with engineers and construction companies to ensure that their

houses are on sturdy and strapped foundations. Both are extremely good

ideas for earthquake preparedness.

But what of the memories and memorabilia on shelves, in cabinets or hanging

in picture frames? Are they protected as well?

It doesn’t take a big effort to ensure the safety of these precious items.

Quakeproof putty or museum wax will secure items to shelves. Picture hooks

can prevent hanging objects from bouncing off the walls. They’re easy to use

and available at any hardware store.

But that’s only the first step. Securing these items in the curio cabinet

will be of no avail if the cabinet itself comes crashing down. A variety of

safety straps to prevent top-heavy furniture from toppling over during an

earthquake are easily available and easy to install.

Senior Activities

And from another point of view, the prevention of crashing furniture might

protect you as well, should you be next to or in front of such furniture.

Small appliances, electronic equipment and desktop computers can also be

secured with safety straps or some of the equally useful fasteners available


Childproof latches work well to prevent toddlers from getting into cleaning

supplies and other hazardous materials, and they also prevent items from

falling out of cabinets and cupboards. You just might save that 18th-century

collection of chinaware if it’s prevented from bouncing out of the cupboard

and onto the floor.

Other tips for your safety:

• Ensure your bed is not up against a window.

• Move the bed if it’s under a heavy chandelier or lamp.

• Do not hang pictures or shelves with items on them above your


• Move that heavy cabinet away from your child’s bed, or ensure it is well

strapped to the wall.

• And, of course, don’t forget your water heater. Make sure it is properly

strapped with two straps, top and bottom, securely fastened to wall studs

or masonry.

So take a moment now. Walk around your house, imagining that you are

sitting in that particular chair or lying in bed, or that your child is right under

that top-heavy TV in the entertainment center. Now imagine it during an


You know what they say: an ounce of prevention ….

The Veterans Memorial Senior Center, 1455 Madison Ave., Redwood City,

provides the following activities that are open to the public during the month

of January.

New Year’s Holiday Closure

Dec. 31–Jan. 4

Veterans Memorial Senior Center will be closed.

Make Your Tax Appointment

Monday, Jan. 7

Beginning Jan. 7, you can call the Senior Center to make an appointment for

tax preparation at 650-780-7343. Appointments will be on Wednesdays from

February to April.

Computer Registration

Thursday, Jan. 10, 9:30–11 a.m. and 7–8 p.m.

Sign up personally with computer instructors and get basic information about

the class. If you’re unable to register on this date, you can also register by

mail, online or by fax. More information about registering can be found on

page 64 of the recreation guide.

Senior Affairs Commission Meeting

Thursday, Jan. 10, 1 p.m.

The objectives of the Senior Affairs Commission are to encourage, foster,

facilitate, establish and maintain programs for the enhancement of all matters

relating to the social, economic and personal well-being of the city’s senior

population. The public is invited to attend.

Toast to the Town Dance

Saturday, Jan. 12, 1–3 p.m.

Start off 2008 with an afternoon of music, compliments of the Bob Saul

Orchestra. Appetizers, champagne and New Year’s cake will be served. For

tickets, leave a message at 650-780-7264 by Wednesday, Jan. 9. Tickets will

also be sold at the door. Transportation available! $10 per person.

Finding Optimal Health at Every Age

Wednesday, Jan. 16, 1–2 p.m.

Please join us for a free lecture and discussion regarding foods that give

nutrition, changing unhelpful habits, degenerative diseases, oxidation and

more! Start the year by attending this informative lecture and begin making

the lifestyle changes on your New Year’s resolution list. For more info, call

Merrylen Sacks at 650-780-7320.

MLK Holiday Closure

Monday, Jan. 21

Veterans Memorial Senior Center will be closed.

To learn more about the Veterans Memorial Senior Center, call 650-780-

7270. Redwood City Parks, Recreation and Community Services Department

provides recreational facilities and activities for all ages and interests, and

supplies building and custodial services for city buildings. Redwood City

Parks also operates the Veterans Memorial Senior Center and the Fair Oaks

Community Center, providing social, educational and cultural activities, as

well as information, referral and counseling services to persons living in

Redwood City and neighboring communities. Redwood City Parks is more

than you think! Its Web site is

A Minute With Santa Claus

Santa Claus, also known as St. Nicholas, Father Christmas, Kris Kringle or simply

Santa, is a fictional folklore figure who, in Western cultures, is presented as bringing

gifts on Christmas Eve, Christmas Day or on his feast day, Dec. 6. The legend may

have its basis in hagiographic tales concerning the historical figure of St. Nicholas.

St. Nicholas of Myra is the primary inspiration for the Christian figure of Santa

Claus. He was a fourth-century Christian bishop of Myra in Lycia, a province of the

Byzantine Anatolia, now in Turkey. Nicholas was famous for his generous gifts to the poor.

Modern ideas of Santa Claus seemingly became canon after the publication of

the poem “A Visit From St. Nicholas” (better known today as “The Night Before

Christmas”) in the Troy (N.Y.) Sentinel on Dec. 23, 1823. In this poem, Santa is

established as a heavyset individual with eight reindeer, who are named for the

first time. One of the first artists to define the modern image of Santa Claus was

American cartoonist Thomas Nast. In 1863, a picture of Santa illustrated by Nast

appeared in Harper’s Weekly.

What is the most important night of the year?

The night before Christmas, of course.

What is the most important aspect of your job?

Spreading joy around the world.

One word to describe your work?


What historical figure do you most identify with?

Odin, a major god among the Germanic peoples.

Who are your heroes in real life?

All those who are giving to others.

Favorite song?

“Santa Baby” — Hurry down the chimney


Favorite television show?

Christmas movies, of course.

What is your most treasured possession?

My reindeer.

Something no one knows about you?

I listen to

If you could change one thing about yourself,

what would it be?

Nothing — I am a jolly old soul.

What words or phrases do you most overuse?

Ho! Ho! Ho!

What is your idea of perfect happiness?

Eggnog, a warm fire, dry clothing and Mrs. Claus.

What do you consider your greatest


You try delivering all those gifts and tell me.

What is your motto?

Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night!


up to


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• 15, 20, and 30 year Fixed Rate Mortgages

• 30 and 40 year Adjustable Rate Mortgage

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• Jumbo loans up to $2 million

• Bi-weekly payment options available

Bring this ad into our On Broadway Branch and save up to $2000 in closing costs on your next home loan.

Hurry, This Offer Expires January 31, 2008

(650) 363-1725 • (888) 363-1725

On Broadway Branch

830 Jefferson Avenue • Redwood City, CA 94063

Mon-Thurs 10 - 6 • Friday 10 - 7 • Saturday 10 - 3

For home loan questions, call SMCU’s Real Estate Information Line at (650) 363-1799 or visit us online.

Arguello St.

El Camino Real

Jefferson Ave.

Broadway St.




*Closing costs to be paid can include lender fees, title, escrow, credit reports and tax service up to $2,000. Offer applicable for purchase or refinance loan transaction. All loans are subject to

credit, income, debt and property value qualifications. Minimum loan balance is $350,000. Mortgages available on California properties only. Membership is open to anyone who lives, works

or attends school in San Mateo County. A one-time membership fee of $10 will be assessed to new members. Offer ends January 31, 2008. Rates and terms are subject to change without notice.

SMCU is an Equal Opportunity Lender.

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