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China Flat with My Dad

A hike to China Flat with my dad. It was a beautiful day, and the flowers were blooming!

My Dad and I went on another great hike! This time we went to China Flat and Simi Peak, which is the highest peak (2,043 ft) in the Simi Hills. April 9, 2014 was a beautiful day, and the wildflowers were blooming!

On April 11, I spoke with two representatives of the National Park Service for clarification on the Simi Hills, Simi Peak, and China Flat regarding their inclusion in the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area (SMMNRA). Kate Kuykendall, the Public Affairs Officer for the National Park Service’s SMMNRA, said that it was a complicated answer. Kuykendall explained that the Simi Hills are not considered part of the Santa Monica Mountains, but are part of the “Santa Monica Mountains Ecological Zone”, and portions of the Simi Hills are within the SMMNRA.

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Rally for Rent Control in Santa Cruz

Measure M would apply to rentals in the City of Santa Cruz. The measure is divided into three main sections: rent control, just cause eviction, and a rent board.

[ Students United with Renters carry a “Yes on M” banner at the intersection of Mission and Bay in Santa Cruz as part of the Rally Against Big Money and Predatory Landlords. October 11, 2018. ]

Dozens rallied in Santa Cruz on Thursday, October 11 to draw support for Measure M, a local rent control initiative. The measure will expand tenant protections and limit rent increases where possible. Proponents say Measure M would help community members who are struggling financially, including families, students, and seniors, afford to stay in Santa Cruz.

Community members, brought together by Students United with Renters, began gathering at Trescony Park at 4:30 p.m. According to their website, “SUR is a collaborative group of student and non-student renters and community members of Santa Cruz organizing for housing justice for all and the stability of our community. We are working to address out-of-control rents and a lack of protection for tenants and houseless people from abuses, intimidation, and eviction.”

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Fourth Annual March to Reclaim King’s Radical Legacy

Recuperation is a process by which radical ideas and images are commodified within media culture and society, and thus become interpreted through a more socially conventional perspective.

[ Young Activists for Black Lives Coalition carry a “Reimagining the Dream” banner through the streets of Oakland during the Fourth Annual March to Reclaim King’s Radical Legacy. January 15, 2018. ]

For the fourth year in a row, for 96 hours over the Martin Luther King Day Weekend, the Anti Police-Terror Project and comrades took to the streets “to stand in solidarity and say no to white supremacy, say no to state sponsored terror, say no to development over people, say no to misogyny, say no to homophobia and transphobia, say no to the targeting of immigrants, say no to the targeting of Muslims.”

In their call to action, the Anti Police-Terror Project (APTP) states, “Join us and show the Trump-Schaaf Regimes that WE WILL NOT COMPLY with their corporate agenda.”

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Solidarity in San José with Millions for Prisoners March in DC

Created to honor the deaths of George and Jonathan Jackson—freedom fighters who were killed by authorities in the early 70s—Black August holds a long tradition and legacy of resistance.

[ Prisoner solidarity activists, including Troy, Nube, Raymond, Cole, Watani, Dorsey, and Julia, at the Millions for Prisoners march and rally in San José on August 19, 2017. ]

Text used for this article was originally written by The Fire Inside collective. Photos and the first two paragraphs are by Bradley Allen, reporting on the march and rally in San José, California on August 19, 2017 in solidarity with the Millions for Prisoners March in Washington DC. The iamWe Prison Advocacy Network organized the mobilization in DC, and reports there were over a dozen solidarity demonstrations on August 19. All photos and text are published in solidarity with prisoners, however they do not necessarily represent the views of the rally organizers and its wide range of participants.

Activists from throughout the Bay Area gathered at Raymond Bernal Jr. Memorial Park at 7th and Mission Streets in San José. At the park, an audio statement was broadcast from political prisoner Joka Heshima Jinsai, founder of “Amend The 13th: Abolish ‘Legal’ Slavery in Amerika Movement.” From there, over one hundred people marched on the sidewalks through Northern California’s largest city, and past a long row of bail bonds storefronts. The demonstration featured a rally at James P. McEntee Plaza, next to Santa Clara County’s notorious Main Jail, with passionate speakers from San José and surrounding communities, including Watani Stiner, Dorsey Nunn, Laurie Valdez, Troy Williams, Raymond Aguilar, Sean Ramsey, Cole Dorsey, and more.

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Heather’s Patisserie Turns Off the Oven

After more than thirteen years of providing the finest in Parisian style pastries and cakes, baked fresh on site daily, Heather’s Patisserie is closing up shop.

[ Fresh baked breads are displayed, along with croissants, scones, turnovers, sticky buns, cinnamon rolls, cookies, cakes, and other desserts, at Heather’s Patisserie in Aptos. August 13, 2017. ]

Heather Liner created her last lemon olallieberry scone for Heather’s Patisserie in Aptos, California on August 13, 2017. After more than thirteen years of providing the finest in Parisian style pastries and cakes, baked fresh on site daily, Heather’s Patisserie is closing up shop. Since January 2003, Heather’s served up a wide variety of baked goods including breads, muffins, danishes, croissants, cookies, chocolates, confections, cakes and wedding cakes.

From 2001-2015, Heather was also the owner and operator of The Kind Grind, a cafe located on the South-East side of the small craft harbor that featured a fantastic view of the beach, a wide selection of pastries, sandwiches, smoothies, and coffee drinks.

Heather’s Patisserie featured a deli for hot breakfast and lunch, including fresh soups made daily. The patisserie was a great spot to stop for a flaky handmade croissant with a fresh cup of organic coffee or an espresso drink, and then stay longer to enjoy a panini sandwich prepared on their fresh bread.

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Last Call at Caffé Pergolesi

“Don’t ask what is happening here — you already know. You can no longer afford to live here. You’ve been priced out and so have all your favorite places.”

[ Caffé Pergolesi, situated in a Victorian-era home at 418 Cedar Street in Santa Cruz, blurs the line between the downtown district and the historic district. August 10, 2017. ]

On August 9, news spread quickly that Santa Cruz’s oldest, best known, and most loved coffeehouse will shut their doors forever in two weeks, on August 26, 2017. Caffé Pergolesi, an institution of downtown Santa Cruz, holds a very special place in the hearts of so many people. Besides offering coffee, tea, beer, wine, cider, and snacks, the cafe is an important space for friends and groups to meet. Its walls serve as a gallery for local artists, and The Perg, as it’s known, is a one of a kind venue, particularly for punk and hardcore musicians.

Caffé Pergolesi is situated in a Victorian-era home at 418 Cedar Street, and blurs the line between the downtown district and the historic district, seeing as that it fits both bills. The Sidewalk Companion to Santa Cruz Architecture explains that 418 Cedar Street is a one-story, raised-basement, 1886 cottage emblazoned with the legend “Dr. Miller.” Originally, this sign read “Dr. Miller, Dentist.” The Perg is comprised of several rooms, including a lobby, blue room, green room and orange room. The furniture is eclectic and comprises plush antique couches and church pews. A back porch is utilized by employees, while a wooden deck along Cedar Street is popular for outside seating.

People keep asking for reasons. Why is Caffé Pergolesi closing? Are they going to relocate? No, they are not going to open elsewhere. The short answer for why they are closing is that their lease was not renewed. Word on the street, mixed with speculation, is that the property owner wanted more money for rent than Karl Heiman, the owner for the past 15 years, was willing to pay.

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