Archive for the ‘First Street’ Category

Patch a Match, Natch

Sunday, May 15th, 2011

Patch.com Screen Grab with Missions
I first heard of Patch.com from Ryan Sebastian of Treatbot. A few months back we were chatting at a South FIRST Fridays event and he told me Treatbot had been interviewed by Adelaide Chen of Milpitas Patch, and that Mayra Flores de Marcotte was preparing to launch a new Campbell Patch. I knew Mayra’s handmade Kerfufle jewelry and her husband Josh’s Lost San Jose photography from exhibits at The Usuals. Treatbot…South FIRST Fridays…The Usuals…these are all luminous bodies in the AllCamino firmament, so let’s say Patch.com came to me well-recommended by these indirect El Camino connections.

I immediately checked it out and learned Patch.com is a slick, coordinated, AOL-owned network of hyperlocal news sites about communities across the country. Several are in California so I subscribed to all the Bay Area Patches for cities that lie on El Camino Real or have mission connections. I figured this would be an excellent way to catch news stories about the road. My current, growing list of Patches to follow is:

Back in November, as I was embarking on the the Shellmound Peace Walk through Milpitas, I contacted Adelaide in the spirit of networking and to my surprise got signed on as a freelance contributor. Since then she has given me the opportunity to write three articles for Patch—my first experience in journalism. It was a blast writing with a professional voice and (full disclosure) it was quite cool to be paid for those pieces.

Recently, however, she let me know that all Patches are adding a new feature: blogs. They are offering space for bloggers to write in their own voices about local topics they are passionate about. Patch bloggers don’t get paid, but they gain expanded exposure to a wider audience while retaining independence and ownership over the content. I knew right away this was a natural fit for me. Freedom!

I contacted the various Patch editors and so far the response has been quite positive. This is new for everyone so I’m still figuring out how it will work, but here’s the vision. AllCamino.com will continue to exist independently exactly as it does today; I’ll still do what I do. But if I write a post that might interest a particular Patch’s readers, I may cross-post to that Patch’s blog. Or I might write a standalone piece at Patch and just link to it here.

I’m taking baby steps now. I  just published my first Patch blog at Los Altos Patch. The editor there, L.A. Chung, was the first to activate my Patch blog and she’s been very supportive and helpful so to her go the spoils. Click the link to read it:

An El Camino Real Journey

By Bill Moore | May 10, 2011
El Camino Real is an important part of California history and Bay Area life. AllCamino.com is a blog that celebrates the past, present and future of The Royal Road.

It’s a fairly generic piece. My intention is to use it as an introduction on every Patch. See, I can do that. Freedom!

bell_scuDo you like my profile photo there? It took me many takes and half an hour to get it right. It’s a trick-shot self-portrait and all I had as a guide was the little mirror on the back of my cameraphone. It was a lot harder than I expected and I got some funny looks from drivers whizzing by on El Camino. Can you locate that bell?

I think this Patch relationship will be a lot of fun. The symbolism is irresistable. AllCamino is the virtual link among the various Patches, just as El Camino Real is the concrete link that joins the real cities. These Patches are stitched together by a common thread that together make up the fabric of Northern California. Um, too much? Sorry about that.

I love the breathless tone of press releases—they’re invariably so thrilled!—and I always wanted to write one, so here we go:

Today AllCamino.com is thrilled to announce a new partnership with Patch.com. Blogger Bill Moore says, “This is the dawn of a new era of Bay Area hyperlocal storytelling. AllCamino and Patch create unique synergy and an enhanced value proposition for our combined readership along the El Camino Real information superhighway.” Arianna Huffington, founder of The Huffington Post and recent addition to the AOL family, remarks, “We are thrilled to roll out one of the most exciting offshoots of our turbo-charged web presence. This week we launch a great new chapter for Patch.com.”

That’s a real quote from Arianna, by the way, just not about me specifically. A real journalist wouldn’t take a quote out of context like that, but hey I’m a blogger. Freedom!

El Camino Calendar

Thursday, December 9th, 2010

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A bit of the traditional and a bit of the unexpected this weekend. Don’t forget to check out the El Camino Calendars page for a list of venues all up and down El Camino Real which always have a variety of activities going on.


Santa-Go-Round

Sunday December 12th
CONTESTS! CRAWLS AND CRAZINESS!

Have fun and support a great cause. Santa-Go-Round is part toy drive, part costume contest, part pub crawl and all fun. Come to the Circle of Palms and bring a new, unwrapped toy to be donated to InnVision and participate in what is going to be one of the most talked about events in downtown San Jose since Zombie-O-Rama.

Come dressed as Santa and get discounts on Ice Skating and drink or dinner specials at one of 19 participating businesses.
Downtown San Jose
http://www.santagoround.com/


2nd Annual San Jose Short Film Festival

Opening Night Premiere and Screenings Coming December 2010

Buy tickets online at Camera 3 Cinemas or visit the Camera 3 Cinema Box Office.:

Thursday December 9th Opening Night:
$10 (tickets are limited: includes premiere screening, meet the movie makers forum after screening, pre-show mixer. 6:30pm mixer, 7:30pm screening

Saturday December 11th:
$8 tickets 1pm and 4pm screening times

Sunday December 12th:
$8 tickets 1pm and 4pm screening times

Camera 3 Downtown
288 S. Second Street | San Jose, CA 95113
http://www.sjshortfest.com/
http://www.cameracinemas.com/shortfilmfest.shtml


Deadstök X

Friday, December 10 · 7:00pm – 10:00pm

The Usuals
1020 The Alameda
San Jose, CA

We are bringing-back all Deadstök designs made in 2010!

Expect to see new version t-shirt designs by dNA, Everyday Debauchery, Lost San Jose, Kori Thompson, Lacey Bryant, Michael Foley, Anabella Pinon, Force 129, Wadl, Jane Doe, and more!

Say good-bye to STREETBOT! Say HELLO to the WOW Silog Truck! YUMmmm…

Squareweezy and Cutso from The Bangerz will provide beats in the backroom where we’ll have more to nibble and sip.

Join us for our end of the year EXTRAVAGANZA!

Facebook event
http://www.shoptheusuals.com/


The Nutcracker

Santa Clara Ballet Company
37th Annual, Full-length, Traditional Version

Saturday, December 11, 2010—2:00pm & 7:00pm
Sunday, December 12, 2010—1:00pm & 5:00pm

The Santa Clara Convention Center Theatre
5001 Great America Parkway, Santa Clara
http://www.santaclaraballet.com/


Sweet Memories

Sweet Memories Confectionery
Is Celebrating Its First Anniversary and You’re Invited!

That’s right, we’ve been open a year now and want to celebrate this milestone with YOU.

When: Saturday, December 11, 2010 10am – 10pm
Where: Sweet Memories Confectionery
1395 El Camino Real, Millbrae
What: Anniversary Celebration!

  • Happy Hour All Day (single scoop sundae for just $2!)
  • Free Popcorn
  • Free Hot Tea & Spiced Cider
  • Great Holiday Gifts and Decor!

We hope to see you there!

http://www.sweetmemoriesconfectionery.com/
Facebook flyer


Wreaths across America

Golden Gate National Cemetery
1300 Sneath Lane
San Bruno, CA 94066

The ceremony for the Golden Gate National Cemetery in San Bruno is on December 11th. The ceremony begins at 8:45am. Plan to be there a bit earlier to find the exact location. As you enter the main entrance go to the left to find other vehicles near the ceremony area.
http://www.wreathsacrossamerica.org/Locations/California/30-Golden-Gate-National-Cemetery-San-Bruno/View-details.html


Wine & Dine

Vedas Indian Restaurant
Invites You to a Special Evening
Fri., Dec. 10
6:30-9:30pm

A Fabulous Night of the Finest Wines Paired with Exceptional Indian Cuisine
Live Music, Featured California Wineries, Select Indian Dishes

Make your reservations TODAY!!!

560 N Abel Street, Milpitas, CA – 95035
http://www.vedasrestaurant.com/Events.php


Turn-by-turn

Thursday, December 2nd, 2010

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I’m still writing about the Shellmound Peace Walk. How did I end up there? I learned of the walk when my family and I went to the Gathering of Ohlone PeoplesIMG_2019 at Coyote Hills Regional Park in Fremont on October 3, 2010. We thoroughly enjoyed ourselves, watching traditional Ohlone dances, trying (and failing) to make fire, and learning all about Native life. One of the exhibit tables belonged to Indian People Organizing for Change (IPOC) and was staffed by Corrina Gould and Perry Matlock. They were promoting the Shellmound Peace Walk which immediately captured my imagination, especially when I found out they were going through Milpitas. I resolved to join the walk if logistics permitted.

Logistics permitted, so the morning of November 17 I left my car at the Great Mall and took public transit to Alviso Marina. I had a bit of a wait since all the other walkers were coming from the Oakland/Berkeley area and were stuck in rush hour traffic. I didn’t mind; it was a beautiful, sunny morning out on the Marina and I quietly contemplated the views of the water, tule marsh, and the Valley hills until everyone arrived.

Corrina explained to us the significance of Alviso: that her Ohlone ancestors lived there and collected salt for trade. (The Alviso salt ponds continued to be a major commercial operation up until pretty recently.) When the Spanish rounded up Indians they used Alviso as a collection point before marching them to Mission San Jose so our Peace Walk that day was approximating their trail.

We set off. Our route took us from the Marina down First Street, towards Tasman. Earlier that morning I had sent a tweet to Adelaide Chen of Milpitas Patch to let her know the Walk was coming through, and I was delighted she came out to meet us on First Street. I recognized her from her profile photo and introduced myself, and she was a great sport, walking along with us while we chatted. She commissioned me to write the article for Patch, which was an unexpected opportunity. I was a little hesitant because I envisioned myself later that evening furiously pounding out the article on my laptop while soaking my feet in an Epsom salt bath and I was worried about possible electrocution hazards, but I accepted. She gave me some quick journalism tips which were a big help because I would have been stuck after who/when/where/why/what’s-for-lunch. My new assignment colored the rest of my day though because now I had real responsibility, and I felt I had to inform everybody that the casual conversations we had been having were now “on the record.”

We turned up Tasman, passing through Cisco land. We took a break on a patch of grass in front of a Cisco building where we were questioned by some Cisco employees, probably plainclothes security. I suspect they wanted to make sure we weren’t protesting them, but they were happy when Corrina told them we were just passing through. It was strange being here because I work very nearby, so reflecting on ancient peoples in the midst of all the high-tech companies that comprise my world now was a jarring juxtaposition. Crossing Coyote Creek into Milpitas grounded me because the creek has special significance to me. I live and work close to it, and it’s a constant feature I’ve seen on many old maps so it helps me link the past and the present.

The next point of interest for the Walk was Elmwood Correctional Complex, former site of an Ohlone shellmound. As we passed we could hear the shouts of inmates; I don’t know if they were shouting at us, for us, or if they even knew we were there. Our group said prayers and dropped tobacco—traditional medicine—for the spirits of the dead. Turning up Abel we walked along the culvert that used to be Penitencia Creek and marveled at a number of majestic blue herons gathered there. I could see the Jain Center on Main Street and thought about how this spot is a spiritual nexus for Milpitas. The Ohlone buried their dead here, and the Franciscans gave penance here, giving Penitencia Creek its name. I remarked on the irony of passing Serra Center, a strip mall named for Father-President Junipero, considered by many to be a symbol of Indian oppression. His 297th birthday happened to be exactly one week later, November 24.

We rested again outside Carl’s Jr. and IPOC co-founder Johnella LaRose gave us some history of the Walk and its roots in 1978′s The Longest Walk and its connection to numerous international Peace Walks for varied causes such as nuclear non-proliferation. I interviewed Jun Yasuda, the Japanese Buddhist nun heading our procession, to understand her dedication to Native American causes. She explained to me that as a Buddhist she is drawn to confront human suffering such as the Indians endured through history. Also she sees traditional Native selflessness—putting the community ahead of one’s self—as compatible with Buddhist teaching and a way forward for mankind to Peace. Maybe Columbus was onto something when he confused the so-called “Indians” of the “New World” with residents of India, birthplace of Buddhism.

The rest of the trek was a long haul up Abel to Milpitas Boulevard and Warm Springs. We were supposed to turn onto Mission Boulevard and end at Mission San Jose but our late start caught up with us so we ended the day at Booster Park in Fremont. IPOC provided food fixin’s and I made myself a peanut butter, jelly, and corn chip sandwich. After a ten-mile walk I think officially it was The Best Sandwich I ever tasted. My feet were tender and my thighs ached (as much from the barbell lunges I did in the gym the day before as from the walk) and I was more than a little damp from the unseasonably warm weather, but it was all worth it. We sat in a circle and several in the group shared their thoughts and feelings on the day.

I had planned to take a bus back to the Great Mall but I ended up catching a ride with a driver who kindly shuttled those who had to retrieve vehicles left in Alviso. It was astounding how quickly we got back, retracing by car in minutes the route it took us hours to walk. Modern transportation is a gift, but being able to complete the walk, even for just one day, was a blessing.

El Camino Calendar

Thursday, December 2nd, 2010

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A chance to recharge after last week’s retail shock. Don’t forget to check out the El Camino Calendars page for a list of venues all up and down El Camino Real which always have a variety of activities going on.


South FIRST FRIDAYS Art Walk

December 3, 2010

JOIN US for the next South FIRST FRIDAYS art walk on DEC 3rd!
8pm ’til LATE — ART WALK venues are free and open to the public
SoFA District (So. First Street between San Carlos and E. Reed streets)
San Jose
http://www.southfirstfridays.com/


DIY Art: Festive Family Fun

December 4, 2010
12 — 3 pm

Free with Museum admission

Celebrate the season of lights by using LEDs to make a high-tech holiday decoration. Bring the whole family for festive art-making. Art materials will be provided.

San Jose Museum of Art
110 South Market Street
San Jose, CA 95113
http://www.sanjosemuseumofart.org/event/diy-art-festive-family-fun


29th Annual Holiday Parade

The San Jose Holiday Parade, the largest parade of its kind in Northern California, and one of the largest in the state, is ready to usher in the holidays with its giant helium balloons, over two dozen marching bands, creative floats, dozens of specialty units, clowns and Santa Claus.

This year’s parade is preparing to entertain millions of people on Sunday, December 5, 2010, beginning at 8:30 a.m., televised live on NBC Bay Area at 9:00 a.m. and streamed worldwide on nbcbayarea.com

The 29th Annual SAN JOSE HOLIDAY PARADE will showcase approximately 90 entries with 5,000 marchers, including giant soaring helium balloons, top marching bands, colorful floats, drill teams, equestrians, clowns and special guest celebrities!

The parade will step off on Santa Clara Street and Delmas Avenue, near HP Pavilion, at 8:30 a.m. proceeding east on Santa Clara Street. It will turn right on Market Street, marching south past Plaza De Cesar Chavez and ending at San Carlos Street. Join us to celebrate Toys, Treasures and Traditions at the San Jose Holiday Parade on December 5, 2010!
http://www.sanjoseholidayparade.com/


HOLIDAY OPEN HOUSE

DECEMBER 5 : 12-3PM

We’re celebrating a great year with a Holiday Open House on Sunday, 12/5. Join us in the Plant 51 Mezzanine Lounge for some festive food, refreshments & model tours. This is also a great opportunity to drop off new, unwrapped toy donations as part of our annual Toys for Tots drive for San Jose’s children in need.

Plant 51
734 The Alameda
San Jose, CA 95126
http://plant51.com/


Just the Way You Are

Friday, December 3 · 7:00pm – 10:00pm
Billy DeFrank LGBT Community Center
938 The Alameda
San Jose, CA

A fashion show by The Usuals benefiting the LGBTQ Youth Space & Billy De Frank Center.

Music by:
Cutso (The Bangerz)

$5 donation at the door.

For more information:
http://www.defrankyouthspace.org/
http://www.defrankcenter.org/
Facebook event


14th Annual Guadalupe Celebration

Sunday, Dec. 5, 2010 2:00 pm to 7:00 pm
Ignatian Center for Jesuit Education
All are invited to be a part of this celebration in drama, dance, and song that tells the story of the apparitions of Our Lady of Guadalupe. The performance will be in Spanish with English commentary throughout.

A reception will follow in Benson Center. Admission is free and open to the public. Families are welcomed!

Location: Mission Church
Santa Clara University
500 El Camino Real
Santa Clara, CA 95053

http://www.scu.edu/events/?event=16428


Holiday Fun at Town & Country Village

Saturday, December 4 · 12:00pm – 3:00pm
Town & Country Village
855 El Camino Real
Palo Alto, CA

Santa’s Elf is at Town & Country Village to help children write letters to St. Nick. Plus, make ornaments and dreidels, face painting by the Snow Princess and performances by the Palo Alto High School Madrigal Singers.
http://www.tandcvillage.com/
Facebook event


Night of Holiday Lights, Downtown Laurel Street

Downtown Laurel Street, San Carlos
12/3/2010 5:00 PM – 8:00 PM

Mark your Calendars for a New Holiday Tradition!
6:30 Lighting Festivities
Kickoff the Holidays * Family Fun *
Shop *Eat * Toy Drive * Food Drive *
Music * Special Surprises *
Businesses Open Late
Event info


Christmas Tree Lighting

Join us the first Saturday in December for the annual Mission San Jose Christmas Tree Lighting at the Old School

Date: December 4, 2010

Location: Mission Blvd. & Cedar Street, across from Ohlone College

* 5:30 pm – Gathering
* 5:30 – 6:00 pm – Entertainment by StarStruck Theatre & The Canyon Band
* 6:00 – Tree Lighting and Arrival of Special Guest
* Refreshments will be served
* Balloons & Face Painting

We will be accepting donations of canned goods for the Tri-City Volunteers Food Bank, as well as Toys for Tots.
http://www.msjchamber.org/events_christmas.html


Ridin’ on the Green Line

Saturday, November 13th, 2010

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Early November I started noticing something new on my street: Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority’s Route 66 is now being serviced by shiny new hybrid buses. They’re hard to miss with eye-catching “Hybrid” labels on the sides, a reworked VTA logo with a new green swoosh around it, and a big boxy hump on the roof.

I went to VTA’s web site to check them out and learned that VTA is purchasing a “fleet of 90 American-made, low-emission diesel electric hybrid buses.” The cool thing is they used federal stimulus money as well as California Prop 1B funds to buy buses that are built by a company nearby in Hayward, creating and preserving green jobs here in the Bay Area: your tax dollars at work. The new buses are 90 percent cleaner and emit 15 percent less greenhouse gas than the nineties-era all-combustion coaches they replace.

I love that Route 66 is the first to get these new buses. This route is the historic “El Camino de San Jose“  bus line, coming up through San Jose on Monterey Road from the south, continuing onto First Street through downtown, then cutting over to Oakland Road and Main Street in Milpitas. After a few twists it terminates at Dixon Landing and North Milpitas Boulevard, at the county line. This bus was the first one I took on both my epic bus trips up and down El Camino Real.

CIMG0680All the new hybrid buses I had seen were similar to the old diesel-only ones—white paint jobs with blue and red stripes down the side. Earlier this week though I was driving on Oakland Road and I saw something completely different: a hybrid bus with a brand new colorful full-body wrap! It was gorgeous, depicting a blue sky, a field of golden poppies, and native California wildlife. I desperately wanted to take a picture of it so I rashly made the decision to “follow that bus!” How hard could that be? It’s a bus that stops, right? It turns out I’m really bad at trying to front-tail a bus. I raced ahead of it (obeying all speed and traffic laws, of course) and pulled over to snap a shot of it, but I kept messing up the timing.CIMG0653 At one point I pulled way ahead of the bus into a parking lot and parked…behind a hedge. D’oh! After a couple more botched attempts I decided to go for the sure thing. I got behind it and followed it to the Great Mall where I know it waits for several minutes. Brilliant. Then I was separated from it by a red light. C’mon! C’mon! When I got to the mall it was still there. Awesome. Park, get out of the car, and bam, off it goes again. Augh!!! Back in the car, I tried to catch it at the Milpitas Library but failed to find a good ambush spot. Vroom, it’s gone. Sunnyvale biscuit! I’m no quitter. Undeterred I pulled ahead, determined to find a good spot, but I had a problem. I didn’t know the route past the library, and I didn’t have time to pull up the map on my smartphone. I literally had to sniff out the route, hopping from bus stop to bus stop. I felt like a caveman tracking a woolly mammoth (with fewer emissions). I lucked out and guessed correctly that it turns off Jacklin onto Escuela. I tried to trap it at the end of Escuela but again it eluded me because I couldn’t park close enough. By then I was literally shaking with frustration at the absurdity of it all so I just followed it until it finally came to rest at the end of the line. I parked in the Sunnyhills Apartment complex of all places. I had all the time in the world so I got my shots. Victory. I have no idea what the driver on break thought of the crazy guy stalking him from San Jose and taking tons of pictures of his bus, so I simply told him I was admiring the new paint job, and he understood that.

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I should mention that going southbound, Route 66 goes to South San Jose all the way to Santa Teresa and terminates at Kaiser Permanente San Jose Medical Center. The street it turns onto to get to the hospital is Camino Verde. “Green Road.” Kinda perfect.

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El Camino Calendar

Thursday, November 4th, 2010

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I’m still trying to catch my breath from the crazy start to this week. Halloween! Giants! Election! Oh my! Take it down a notch and relax at some of these upcoming El Camino events this weekend. As always, be sure to check out the El Camino Calendars page for a list of venues which always have a variety of activities going on.

Tragically somehow I accidentally deleted my “El Scare-Mino Skull-endar” posting from last week, which listed a bunch of Halloween events. C’est la vie. In the future I’ll be more careful.


South FIRST FRIDAYS Art Walk

November 5, 2010

JOIN US for the next South FIRST FRIDAYS art walk on NOV 5th!
8pm ’til LATE — ART WALK venues are free and open to the public
SoFA District (So. First Street between San Carlos and E. Reed streets)
San Jose
http://www.southfirstfridays.com/


Modern Primitive Cocktail Society and Tiki Art Show

Friday, November 5 · 8:00pm – 11:00pm
SLG Art Boutiki
577 S. Market Street
San Jose, CA

The SLG Art Boutiki and Gallery, home of Club Tiki Press publishers of the famed Beachbum Berry Tiki Drink books, celebrates November with a Tiki art show celebrating, well, tiki’s and our love for them.

Live music and all of the normal South First Friday Art Boutiki good times.

Event on Facebook
http://www.artboutiki.com/


ArtRage

Thursday, November 4 · 6:00pm – 9:00pm
San Jose Museum of Art
110 S Market St.
San Jose, CA

Hang with friends (and meet new ones) at ArtRage. Do some in-person social networking! Admission $5.

Local neo-soul/funk/hip hop favorites “So Timeless” will get you moving.
Catch the “Glow Show” by Nocturnal Sunshine
Capture the ArtRage with your friends in the (free) photobooth
Ride Rebar’s “Juicecycle” and juice local fruit for your cocktail
DIY Art: make an LED light sculpture

http://www.sanjosemuseumofart.org/event/art-rage-0


Bay Area Dine Out for Meals on Wheels

Join Meals on Wheels organizations from seven Bay Area counties and fabulous partner restaurants throughout your community for the first annual Bay Area Dine Out for Meals on Wheels on November 9, 2010. Combined, these Meals on Wheels organizations provide nearly 3 million meals each year to over 8,500 local seniors in our communities in need of a hot, nutritious meal and companionship each day.
Multiple locations!
Celia’s Mexican Restaurant | 3740 El Camino Real | Palo Alto
Hobee’s California Restaurants | 4224 El Camino Real | Palo Alto
China Stix Restaurant | 2110 El Camino Real | Santa Clara
Country Inn Cafe | 2008 El Camino Real | Santa Clara
La Paloma Restaurant | 2280 El Camino Real | Santa Clara
Mountain Mike’s Pizza | 390 El Camino Real | Belmont
The American Bull Bar & Grill | 1819 El Camino Real | Burlingame
British Bankers Club | 1090 El Camino Real | Menlo Park
Cedro Ristorante Italiano | 1010 El Camino Real #140 | Menlo Park
Celia’s Mexican Restaurant | 1850 El Camino Real | Menlo Park
Oak City Bar and Grill | 1029 El Camino Real | Menlo Park
Round Table Pizza | 1225 El Camino Real | Menlo Park
Chantilly Restaurant | 3001 El Camino Real | Redwood City
John Bentley’s Restaurant | 2915 El Camino Real | Redwood City
Max’s of Redwood City | 1001 El Camino Real | Redwood City
Celia’s Mexican Restaurant | 201 El Camino Real | San Bruno

http://www.dineoutnow.org/


Sunnyvale Art Gallery

“Two Man Show”

Hsing-Yao Tseng & Albert Ramos
Opening Reception:
Sat, November 6
2:00-5:00 PM

People’s Photo Contest

Reception:
Sat, November 6
7:00-9:30 PM

Sunnyvale Art Gallery
251 W El Camino Real
Sunnyvale, CA 94087
http://sunnyvaleartgallery.com/events.html


Bobbi Brown

Meet Bobbi Brown, the world’s most celebrated makeup artist and bestselling author.
Thursday, November 4th
5:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
Stanford Bookstore, Textbook Level
Give her 5 minutes. She’ll show you how to break some rules.
Come meet Bobbi Brown, who will be at the Stanford Bookstore to sign her new book, Beauty Rules.
Stanford Bookstore


Annual Holiday Open House

Ah Sam Florist
Celebrating 77 years serving our community.
Come join us for our annual holiday open house

November 5th – 7th
Friday: 6:30 – 9 pm
Saturday: 9 am – 6 pm
Sunday: 11 am – 5 pm

2645 S. El Camino Real
San Mateo, CA 94403
http://www.ahsam.com/


3rd Annual Children’s Talent Show

Saturday, November 6 · 2:00pm – 4:00pm
The Shops at Tanforan, Lower level in front of Old Navy

Children will compete and perform for a chance to win mall gift cards. First place will receive a $150 mall gift card! Come and support these talented rising stars!

To participate in the talent show, visit the mall management office or call 650 392 1631 to request an application. The application deadline is November 4th.
http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=156362661069720
http://www.theshopsattanforan.com/


Simon GamePlay

The Ultimate Gaming Experience!
Get your hands on the hottest games and more.
Be the first of your friends to play some of the most talked about unreleased games.

Great Mall
Sat, November 6, 10 AM – 9 PM
Neiman Marcus Last Call Court
447 Great Mall Drive
Milpitas, CA 95035
http://www.simon.com/mall/?id=1250


Diwali Gala Buffet

Vedas Indian Restaurant Presents the Diwali Gala Buffet
Nov. 5, 6, 7
Come Celebrate the Light
Handmade Sweets by Chef Kumar
560 N. Abel St., Milpitas
http://www.vedasrestaurant.com/


The Best of El Camino Real

Saturday, October 2nd, 2010

On September 22, Metro, Silicon Valley’s weekly newspaper, put out their “Best of Silicon Valley” issue, 2010 edition. It contains the readers’ choices and editors’ picks of the best locations, goods, and services available in Santa Clara County and beyond. Of all the “Best of” lists out there, Metro’s is the one I’ve always valued the most partly because it always brings the wacky with unique categories like “Best Place to be a Scarecrow”and “Best Place to Buy an Accordian,” but mostly because it delivers. Some of my favorite joints in the South Bay proudly display coveted Metro “Best of” placards. They have weight with me, and they’ve earned my trust.

It’s no surprise Metro is so in tune with quality in the Valley. As it so happens this is their 25th annual list, a noteworthy milestone. They know what they’re doing and they do it well. You might even say too well: the sucker is pretty large. This year the printed list is 80 pages long. I scanned every page with glee but quickly realized what the problem was. They covered the entire Valley including, shockingly enough, businesses and locations that are not on El Camino Real. Yeah, I know, right? I understand their reasoning. Conceivably someone could find themselves on, say, San Carlos Street and they can’t easily get to El Camino and they desperately need to buy some sporty sunglasses. In such a scenario a two-dimensional “Best of” list could hypothetically be handy. All the same I took it upon myself to scour the list and extract for you the best of the “Best of,” the winners which are located on extended El Camino Real.

The list is below, presented not by category but in rough geographical order. Winners that are tagged with “#2″ or “#3″ came in second or third in the readers’ polling; otherwise they came in first or were simply awarded by the editors. This was a big copy-’n’-paste job so I apologize in advance for any errors I might have injected.

As I was putting this together I noticed that the list is heavily weighted towards Downtown San Jose. Then I remembered: Metro Silicon Valley is headquartered on El Camino, at 550 South First Street, in San Jose’s SoFA district. Now we know why the list is so good.

Rosso’s Furniture

#3 Best Furniture Store
6881 Monterey Road, Gilroy

Tony Di Maggio’s Pizza

Best Stromboli
3852 Monterey Hwy., San Jose

Road Rider

#2 Best Motorcycle Shop
2897 Monterey Hwy., San Jose

Southern Lumber

#2 Best Alternative to Home Depot
1402 Monterey Hwy., San Jose

San Jose Institute of Contemporary Art

Best Art Gallery
560 S. First St., San Jose

San Jose Museum of Quilts and Textiles

#3 Best Art Museum
520 S. First St., San Jose

San Jose Stage Company

#2 Best Theater Company
490 S. First St., San Jose

WORKS/San Jose

CIMG0292Best Gallery for Weird Art
#3 Best Art Gallery
451 S. First St., San Jose
I’ve been to WORKS three times in the past month, every two weeks, and each time the exhibit has been completely different. They turn this place over fast and frequently. I loved the most recent (OP)Space installation.

South First Billiards

Best Place to Play Pool
420 S. First St., San Jose

Miami Beach Club

#2 Best Latin/Salsa Club
417 S. First St., San Jose

Bayonne

#3 Best New Restaurant
399 S. First St., San Jose
This is high on my list of places to try, featuring lighter Southern fare.

Agenda’s Wednesday salsa night

#3 Best Latin/Salsa Club
399 S. First St., San Jose

Wet

#3 Best Big Dance Club
396 S. First St., San Jose

Cherri Lakey & Brian Eder

Best Cultural Guerillas
Anno Domini, 366 S. First St., San Jose
I was unaware until now that this pair deserves a lot of credit for the cool, creative vision which San Jose’s SoFA district has become recently.

Brix Nightclub

#2 Best Gay or Lesbian Bar
349 S. First St., San Jose

California Theatre

Most Romantic Movie Watching Spot
345 S. First St., San Jose

Symphony Silicon Valley

Best Symphony/Classical Group
325 S. First St., San Jose, performances at the California Theatre

Original Joe’s

Best Moderately Priced Italian Food
Best Late Night Eats
Best Martinis
301 S. First St., San Jose

Four Points by Sheraton

#3 Best Boutique Hotel – San Jose/Los Gatos
211 S. First St., San Jose

Soula Power Yoga

Best Yoga Studio
200 S. First St. #70, San Jose

San Jose Taiko and the Bangerz

Best Collaboration
SoFA District, San Jose
So sad I missed this live. Check it out on
YouTube.

SubZero Festival

Best Urban Uprising
San Jose

Children’s Musical Theatre San Jose

Best Children’s Theater
271 S. Market St., San Jose, performances at Montgomery Theater

Tech Museum

Best History/Specialty Museum
201 S. Market St., San Jose

Tech Museum Store

#3 Best Toy Store
201 S. Market St., San Jose

San Jose Museum of Art

Best Art Museum
110 S. Market St., San Jose

San Jose Museum of Art Museum Store

#2 Best Gift Store
110 S. Market St., San Jose
Dang, now my Christmas gift-buying secret is out!

McCormick and Schmick’s

#2 Best Seafood Restaurant
#2 Best Happy Hour
170 S. Market St., San Jose

The Fairmont

Best Hotel
Best Luxury Hotel – San Jose/Los Gatos
170 S. Market St., San Jose

Fairmont Hotel Lobby Lounge

#3 Best Jazz/Blues Club
#3 Best Hotel Bar
170 S. Market St., San Jose

The Grill on the Alley

#2 Best Martinis
172 S. Market St., San Jose

Music in the Park

Best Local Festival
Plaza de Cesar Chavez, San Jose
A couple years ago I took my son to Music in the Park to see his first live rock band, Smash Mouth. He’ll always cherish that night.

San Jose Jazz Festival

CIMG1444#2 Best Local Festival
Various venues, downtown San Jose

Linda Ronstadt

Best Official South Bay Cultural Treasure
Mexican Heritage and Mariachi Festival artistic director
I include her as an El Caminoan because the 2010 San Jose Mariachi Festival culminated at Plaza de Cesar Chavez, which I also count as El Camino. It’s a long story.

Bill’s Beer Steamed Hot Dogs

Best Bacon Hot Dogs
Market and Santa Clara streets, San Jose

Hammer & Lewis Fashions

Best Name for a Downtown Store
19 S. First St., San Jose
It’s a San Jose thing. You wouldn’t understand.

Good Karma

Best Vegetarian Overall
#3 Best Asian Vegetarian
37 S. First St., San Jose

E&O Trading Company

Best Asian Fusion
#2 Best Malaysian Restaurant
96 S. First St., San Jose
Mmm…corn fritters…

Umbrella

#2 Best Hair Salon – San Jose/Sunnyvale/Los Gatos
2 N. Market St. #100, San Jose

Erik’s Deli

Best Deli/Sandwich Shop
2 North Market St., Suite 105, San Jose
717 E. El Camino Real, Sunnyvale
1350 Grant Rd., Mountain View
Multiple locations

Ballet San Jose

Best Dance Company
40 N. First St., San Jose

Picasso’s

#3 Best Tapas/Small Plates
62 W. Santa Clara St., San Jose

San Pedro Square Farmers Market

Best Farmers Market
San Pedro and Santa Clara streets, San Jose. Fridays, 10am-2pm

O’Flaherty’s

Best Irish Pub
25 N. San Pedro St., San Jose

Peggy Sue’s

#3 Best Local Burger Place
29 N. San Pedro St., San Jose

Sonoma Chicken

Best New Restaurant
Best Dining Value
Best Family Restaurant
31 N. Market St., San Jose
Multiple locations
I’m not sure how this counts as new, but I don’t argue the other awards. Apparently they dropped the “Coop” from the name.

Satori Tea Company

Best Place for a Destroyed Nervous System
37 N. San Pedro St., San Jose

Britannia Arms, San Jose

Best British Pub
#2 Best Sports Bar
#2 Best Pre-Sharks Game Spot
#2 Best Restaurant Patio
#3 Best Happy Hour
173 W. Santa Clara St., San Jose
Metro readers really really like this place. Can you believe I’ve never been there?

Hotel De Anza

#3 Best Luxury Hotel – San Jose/Los Gatos
233 W. Santa Clara St., San Jose

Hedley Club Lounge (Hotel De Anza)

#2 Best Hotel Bar
233 W. Santa Clara St., San Jose

Schurra’s

Best Chocolate Shop
840 The Alameda, San Jose
A surprise win, but well-deserved. It’s special to me because I stopped by Schurra’s for an ice cream cone the day I created this blog. Sadly Bill Mundy, former owner of Schurra’s and father of the current owner, passed away last month, another sad loss to The Alameda.

The Watergarden

#3 Best Gay or Lesbian Bar
1010 The Alameda, San Jose
Recently I walked by this place, heard water running, and wondered what it was. Now I know.

The Usuals

CIMG0391Best Boutique-Gallery Crossover
1020 The Alameda, San Jose
The now classic “I heart SJ” tee shirts made them a lock for this prize. Congratulations to Mari and Mike, friends of AllCamino!

Recycle Bookstore

#2 Best Local Independent Bookstore
1066 The Alameda, San Jose

J. Lohr Vineyards & Wines

Best Local Winery
1000 Lenzen Ave., San Jose
Also a great place to throw a party. We held my wife’s birthday party there a few years ago and it was a hit.

Tee Nee Thai

CIMG0141Best Thai Restaurant Beer and Wine List
1423 The Alameda, San Jose
Near and dear to me, the subject of my very first blog post.

Planned Parenthood

#3 Best Organization Making a Difference
1691 The Alameda, San Jose

YMCA

#2 Best Health Club
1717 The Alameda, San Jose
Various locations

KSCU-FM (103.3)

#2 Best College/Independent Radio Station
500 El Camino Real, #3207, Santa Clara

The Off Ramp

Best Bicycle Shop
2369 El Camino Real, Santa Clara
2320 El Camino Real, Mountain View
Funny how similar the two addresses are, but they’re nine miles apart. That’s El Camino!

Russell’s Furniture

Best Furniture Store
2645 El Camino Real, Santa Clara

Santa Clara Ballet

#3 Best Dance Company
3086 El Camino Real, Santa Clara

Orchard Supply

Best Alternative to Home Depot
3615 El Camino Real, Santa Clara
777 Sunnyvale Saratoga Road, Sunnyvale
Multiple locations

Fish Market

CIMG0964Best Seafood Restaurant
3775 El Camino Real, Santa Clara

Trader Joe’s

Best Budget Gourmet Selection
727 Sunnyvale/Saratoga Rd., Sunnyvale
590 Showers Dr., Mountain View
Multiple locations

Rooster T. Feathers

Best Open Mic Night
New Talent Showcase, Wednesday
#3 Best Comedy Venue
157 W. El Camino Real, Sunnyvale

Armadillo Willy’s

Best Barbecue
161 E. El Camino Real, Sunnyvale
Multiple locations

Peninsula Beauty

Best Beauty Supply
328 W. El Camino, Sunnyvale
642 San Antonio Road, Mountain View
1043 El Camino Real, Redwood City
Multiple locations

Beck’s Shoes

Best Shoe Store
711 Sunnyvale-Saratoga Road, Sunnyvale
Multiple locations

Adamson’s French Dip

#2 Best New Restaurant
806 W. El Camino Real, Sunnyvale
Now I’m really excited to try this place.

Palace BBQ Buffet

#2 Best Korean Restaurant
1092 E. El Camino Real #1, Sunnyvale

Hotel Avante

#3 Best Boutique Hotel – Palo Alto/Mtn. View
860 E. El Camino Real, Mountain View

Kabul

#3 Best Middle Eastern Restaurant
833 W. El Camino Real, Sunnyvale

Chaat Paradise

#2 Best Indian Vegetarian
165 E. El Camino Real, Mountain View

Home Consignment Center

#2 Best Furniture Store
141 E. El Camino Real, Mountain View

Amber India

Best Indian Restaurant
2290 El Camino Real #9, Mountain View
600 W. El Camino Real, Mountain View

California Billiard Club

#3 Best Place to Play Pool
881 E. El Camino Real, Mountain View

Lozano Brushless

Best Car Wash
2690 W. El Camino Real, Mountain View

Frankie, Johnnie & Luigi Too

#3 Best Moderately Priced Italian Food
939 W. El Camino Real, Mountain View
My favorite Italian family. Now I want bruschetta.

Fry’s Electronics

Best Computer Store
340 Portage Avenue, Palo Alto
Multiple locations

Dinah’s Garden Hotel

Best Secret Garden
4261 El Camino Real, Palo Alto

Dan Brown’s

Best Vintage El Camino Bar
4141 El Camino Real, Palo Alto
And may I point out that this is the best category name ever!

Westin Palo Alto

#2 Best Luxury Hotel – Palo Alto/Mtn. View
675 El Camino Real, Palo Alto

Cantor Arts Center at Stanford

#2 Best Art Museum
Lomita Drive at Museum Way, Stanford

Hobee’s

Best Omelets
#3 Best American Restaurant
#2 Best Breakfast
3150 El Camino Real, Palo Alto
67 Town & Country Village, Palo Alto

Kirk’s

Best Local Burger Place
75 Town & Country, Palo Alto

LaBelle Day Spa

Best Hair Salon – Mtn. View/Palo Alto
Best Day Spa
95 Town and Country Village, Palo Alto
36 Stanford Shopping Center, Palo Alto

Lavande Nail Spa

Best Pedicure
240 Stanford Shopping Center, Palo Alto

Kepler’s

CIMG0505#3 Best Local Independent Bookstore
1010 El Camino Real, Menlo Park

Beltramo’s

Best Wine Shop for Bargain Hunting and Splurging
1540 El Camino Real, Menlo Park


Sunnyvale Bike Party

Friday, October 1st, 2010

Sunnyvale Bike Party

[Update] Whoa, I goofed big time. I posted details for last month’s ride, September 3. I don’t know if there’s a ride on Friday, October 1. If you’re interested, you might want to give the Sunnyvale Art Gallery a call first to confirm.

Yep, you read that right. Sunnyvale has its own Bike Party and the third one is happening this Friday, September 3, 2010. It embarks at 8:00 PM on El Camino Real at the Sunnyvale Art Gallery, which sponsors the ride.

Sunnyvale Bike Party bills itself as the “smaller, gentler” bike party, a clear reference to San Jose Bike Party which has been a victim of its own rapid growth the past couple months. The San Jose ride has become so large that they’ve had problems like drunken and disorderly riders, complaints from neighbors, and riders breaking laws by blocking lanes and running red lights. In August a rider was seriously injured when he collided with an SUV on Lawrence Expressway. Witnesses said the cyclist had run the light, and paid the price.

I think there’s room in the Valley for the two rides, the established juggernaut and the startup. San Jose’s ride is the third Friday of the month and Sunnyvale’s is the first so there’s no conflict there. However the Sunnyvale ride does coincide with San Jose’s South FIRST FRIDAYS art walk so for that one night you’re forced to choose between bicycles and art. It’s a nice dilemma to have.

Sunnyvale Bike Party #3

Friday, September 3 · 8:00pm – 10:30pm
Sunnyvale Art Gallery
251 West El Camino Real
Sunnyvale, CA
Got a Bike? Come ride!
Facebook

El Camino Calendar

Thursday, September 30th, 2010

CIMG0291

More great events coming up this weekend. Be sure to check out my new El Camino Calendars page for a list of venues which always have a variety of activities going on.


Monterey Road Redesign

A New Downtown – Help Shape Monterey Road

Saturday, October 2nd
17380 Monterey Road (corner of 2nd and Monterey)
Morgan Hill

The City of Morgan Hill is seeking community input on the redesign of Monterey Road between Dunne and Main Avenues, in downtown. A series of community meetings and open forums will be held to provide opportunities for input. With the community’s help, several alternatives will be developed to address community priorities for this important segment of road.
http://www.morgan-hill.ca.gov/


South FIRST FRIDAYS art walk

JOIN US for the next South FIRST FRIDAYS art walk on OCT 1st, 2010!
8pm ’til LATE — ART WALK venues are free and open to the public
SoFA District (So. First Street between San Carlos and E. Reed streets)
http://southfirstfridays.com/


Featured Exhibitions Artists Reception

KALEID Gallery presents new solo exhibitions by Mariana Barnes and John Eric Paulson on Friday, October 1st, 7-9pm.
KALEID Gallery
88 South Fourth Street
San Jose, CA
www.kaleidgallery.com


SJMA’s First Back to Campus Night

Thursday, September 30, 2010
7—9 pm

San Jose Museum of Art
110 South Market Street
San Jose, CA 95113

Free for college students, faculty, and staff. An exclusive after-hours event for a private viewing of the exhibitions, complemented by DJs, the chance to try your hand at an LED light project, and Treatbot, the karaoke ice-cream truck.
http://www.sjmusart.org/


Rock ‘n’ Roll San Jose Half Marathon

Sunday, October 3, 2010
A 1/2 Marathon through the streets of San Jose complete with live bands along the course and a finish line concert featuring Blues Traveler.
http://san-jose.competitor.com/


Rock ‘n’ Roll San Jose Half Marathon Health & Fitness Expo

San Jose McEnery Convention Center
150 W. San Carlos Street
San Jose, CA 95113
Dates: October 1-2, 2010
Times: Friday, October 1st: 1pm- 6pm | Saturday, October 2nd: 9am- 5pm

Free Admission – Open to the public!

More than 80 exhibitors will feature merchandise, free samples, interactive displays, and exciting sweepstakes.

http://san-jose.competitor.com/expo


Brandi Chastain Testimonial Soccer Game

An all-star Testimonial Soccer Game honoring the career of Brandi Chastain and raising funds for her new ReachUP! Foundation. Includes interactive family activities.

Saturday October 2, 2010

  • Family friendly interactive activities begin at 3 p.m
  • Clinic: 4 p.m. SOLD OUT
  • Game: 6 p.m.

Buck Shaw Stadium, Santa Clara University
http://reachupworld.com/


An Evening with the Bard

Hosted by the British Bankers Club
1090 El Camino Real, Menlo Park
October 3, 2010
4pm to 7pm

Special Fundraiser to support the 2011 Season

Eat, drink, and make merry with the creative minds behind the Los Gatos and Mid-Peninsula Shakespeare Festivals. Join us at the British Bankers Club for appetizers and sweets, surprising entertainment, silent auction, and some word (and sword) play to round out the evening. Huzzah!
http://www.lgshakes.org/
Via InMenlo


Old Counting Road

Monday, September 20th, 2010

CIMG0176

Sorry, I didn’t mean to leave you hanging. As I completed my reverse bus trip down El Camino Real earlier this month I tallied many chain stores like fast food restaurants and grocery stores as well as other categories like gas stations and bike shops. I also kept track of every El Camino Real bell. I tallied everything on the southbound trip, but I didn’t count them until now. Here are the totals for both the southbound trip and the northbound trip last November. I got some nice results.

Name

East Bay East

Peninsula East

Peninsula West

Peninsula Total

Gas Station 4 24 23 47
El Camino Bell 1 25 18 43
Subway 2 5 8 13
Taco Bell 2 7 4 11
Jack in the Box 0 7 3 10
McDonald’s 3 1 9 10
Safeway 2 5 4 9
Blockbuster 0 7 1 8
Kragen 0 5 3 8
Burger King 1 5 2 7
KFC 0 5 2 7
Bicycle shop* 0 5 1 6
Lucky 0 4 2 6
Carl’s Jr. 0 2 2 4
Togo’s 0 2 2 4
In-n-Out Burger 0 0 2 2
The Off Ramp 0 2 0 2
Wendy’s 0 0 2 2
Midas* 0 0 1 1

* Under-counted due  to inconsistent counting between trips

On every leg of the trip I only looked out the windows on the right side of the bus so I only saw one side of the road. The East Bay East column counts the businesses I passed heading north from San Jose to the Fremont BART station. It’s a short trip so the counts are low. I only made the trip in one direction so I only counted the east side of the road; I don’t have counts for the west side of the road at this time. The Peninsula East and West columns are for the long rides between San Jose and San Francisco. On the northbound trip I looked at the east side of the road, and southbound I looked west. The Peninsula Totals column is just that and does not include the East Bay counts. The main anomalies are bicycle shops and Midases because I didn’t count them consistently between the two trips so I know they are underrepresented in my table.

CIMG0229 I’m delighted to see that bells are pretty much at the top of the list, outnumbered only by conglomerated gas stations regardless of brand.  The original vision of the bell marker project in 1906 was to place them one mile apart on El Camino Real. It’s a 50-mile trip from San Jose to San Francisco and I counted 43 bells. There’s room for plenty more since I only saw one bell in San Francisco. It’s amazing how faithful Caltrans and the California Federation of Women’s Clubs have been to that original vision.

In the food department I’m surprised to see Subway at the top of the list with 13 stores though I shouldn’t be since they really do seem to be everywhere. I remarked on the northbound trip how there were 7 Taco Bells but only 1 McDonald’s. The southbound trip equalized the disparity with 4 Taco Bells but a whopping 9 McDonald’ses. Taco Bell still edges out McDonald’s with a total of 11 to 10, but that’s within the margin of error. The weird thing is how Taco Bell dominates the east side and McDonald’s dominates the west. The bell and the arch; the perfect symbols for the modern mission road.

My picks for which businesses to count were arbitrary.  I don’t know why I didn’t count Starbucks; I regret the omission. On the southbound trip I wished I had been counting Walgreens and CVS drugstores because I saw a lot of them. Another unusually frequent chain was Holiday Inn Express. I think I saw half a dozen on the southbound trip alone. Car washes, car dealerships, hotels, and banks would also have been interesting to count.

The purpose of this is to embrace the vast stretches of El Camino which are zoned as commercial strip and celebrate the beauty in their homogeneity. They are home to pretty much every national and regional brand I can think of. Even so all these chain stores combined are a drop in the bucket. El Camino as I saw it is made up primarily of small businesses of every description from mom & pop dry cleaners to favorite local chain eateries. There are also homes, schools, municipal buildings, and open space. I can try to reduce this Royal Road to simple numbers, but the whole will always be greater than a count of its parts.