Number 76 ran the four miles from Saratoga to Los Gatos the fastest–just under 20 minutes. The second and third finishers (numbers 1825 and 572) were not yet on N. Santa Cruz Ave. as the fleet-footed young man crossed the finish line just outside Travel Advisors of Los Gatos at Bean Avenue. But everyone won–the enthusiastic crowd, the participating local merchants, the runners, and the Los Gatos Rotary, for whom this was the 33st annual Great Race.Continue reading
“One month ago on March 11, the people of Japan were hit by a massive disaster. As the shocking tolls on human life and damages continue to be assessed, our nation is focused on the hard tasks of caring for those in need and reconstruction,” writes Hiroshi Inomata, the Consul General of Japan in San Francisco. “On behalf of the people of Japan, please accept our deepest appreciation for your compassion and friendship…thank you, California.” (Read the full letter here.)Continue reading
Nababpur is a village 24 km northwest of Kolkata (Calcutta), India, where women have few opportunities and often lack basic education. Two women in Los Gatos have created a trans-national project to improve people’s lives at both ends, by offering special washcloths made in Nababpur for sale in Los Gatos stores like Rural Supply, Domus, Summit Market, and Los Gatos Hardware.
The product is a hard-working, rough-knit square made with organic cotton that maintains its scrubbing and wiping strength when wet. Anna Marie Stauss named the washcloths Toockies, after the nickname of a relative who used to make something similar. The squares are made by 210 village women who are trained and provisioned at a community center. They make the Toockies at home, working around busy schedules. Each package sold in Los Gatos is signed by the artisan who made it. (We bought a set knitted by Khodiga Bibi–perhaps she’ll read this.)
Local merchants who support initiatives like this deserve the community’s support. Chain stores can be as involved as local businesses, but that is not always the case. In this instance, Ace Hardware supports the Toockies (a product of Sinko Corp.), but it always comes down to individuals like Ken and Tim at Rural Supply Ace Hardware.
Sinko Corp. was created by Anna Marie Stauss and Jaya Basu, both of Los Gatos. Jaya Basu founded Promise World Wide to help children in India in 2001, and she and Lynne Woodward spoke about it to the Kiwanis Club of Los Gatos last week. PWW is mainly supported by the the Rotary Clubs of Los Gatos and Kolkata. Former Los Gatos mayor, councilmember and treasurer Linda Lubeck Speicher serves on the PWW advisory committee.