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Redwood City Library launches its first ever Human Library

in Community/Featured/Headline by
Learn to make native California holiday wreaths at Redwood City Library

Redwood City Library is inviting the community to visit its first ever “Human Library,” with first sessions set for Sept. 22.

In a recent newsletter, Library Director Derek Wolfgram says the Human Library is a program where participants can “borrow” a person for a 15 to 20 minute conversation in the same way they borrow a book.

The Library has “collected” humans with a wide variety of experiences to participate in the discussions on Sept. 22. By clicking here and signing up, you can schedule time in the community room of the Downtown Library to chat with a cancer survivor, gay parent, formerly homeless person, police officer, recovered addict and son, transgender, refugee, former mayor, conservative, and more. Visitors can “check out” up to three discussions per session.

Visitors can also walk in and sign up on Sept. 22.

“The aim of the Human Library is to foster conversations that can challenge stereotypes and prejudices,” the Library stated, noting the concept was started in Copenhagen, Denmark in 2000.

Said Wolfgram, “The humans available for conversations have stories to tell about their lives, and are willing to answer questions from community members through these one-on-one conversations.”

For more information about the program, click here

Here’s when local schools are back in session

in Education/Featured/Headline by
School-by-school breakdown of reorganization proposals

It’s mid-August, which means “back to school” is (almost) around the corner.  So just in case you don’t already have the big day marked down on your calendar, here’s your one-stop shop for the first day of school (for schools in and around our community):

Belmont-Redwood Shores School District:  Wednesday, Aug. 22.

Redwood City School District:  Monday, Aug. 20.

Sequoia Union High School District:  Wednesday, Aug. 15.

Ravenswood City School District:  Wednesday, Aug. 22.

San Carlos School District:  Wednesday, Aug. 22.

Menlo Park City School District:  Thursday, Aug. 23.

Woodside School District:  Monday, Aug. 20.

Las Lomitas Elementary School District:  Thursday, Aug. 30.

For the older “kids,” here’s a bonus start date:  The first day of classes at Cañada College is Wednesday, Aug. 15.

(And for all you parents who remember, and miss, the days when summer ended on Labor Day weekend, and school started in September, we feel you.)

Cañada College to launch shuttle program serving East Palo Alto

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Cañada College to launch pilot shuttle program serving East Palo Alto

Starting Aug. 15, Cañada College will launch a pilot shuttle program providing residents free, direct service between East Palo Alto and the campus, the school announced Thursday.

The shuttle program, launched in collaboration with Mosaic Global Transportation and Oxford Day Academy, will run every hour from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 5 p.m. to 10 p.m., Monday through Thursday, through Dec. 31. Pick-up will begin in East Palo Alto at 994 Beech St. and drop off will happen in front of the college’s Main Theatre at Building 3.

Residents and employees who live in East Palo Alto, Menlo Park and Belle Haven communities will benefit from the new pilot program

“The shuttle will be open to students, faculty and staff as well as community members who utilize the services available on campus such as SparkPoint, the Library and the DREAM Center,” the school said. “In addition, those who come to campus to attend athletic, performing arts or other college events can also take advantage of the convenient service.”

If the shuttle service proves to be popular, the school will explore the possibility of expanding locations to accommodate other service areas. For more information, visit

Standoff with domestic violence suspect in Redwood City ends

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A daylong standoff between police and a domestic violence suspect in Redwood City today has ended.

James McGee, 54, a retired police officer from Redwood City, allegedly assaulted a woman at a home in the 700 block of Windsor Way before refusing police commands to leave the home. ABC7 News identified McGee as a retired Redwood City police officer.

Police responded to the home about 2 a.m. today, contacted the woman in front of the residence, and she told them she was assaulted by McGee who remained inside the home. She was transported to a local hospital where she was treated and released for non-life-threatening injuries, police said.

Officers connected with the suspect by phone and he refused to leave, police said. A perimeter was established around the home and attempts to negotiate a peaceful resolution throughout the morning failed, police said.

Roads were closed off and residents were recommended to voluntarily evacuate as the standoff continued throughout the day.

McGee was eventually taken into custody without further incident, police said.

Bay City News contributed to this report

Free Shakespeare in the Park in Redwood City

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Free Shakespeare in the Park coming to Redwood City

Spend a midsummer night in A Midsummer Night’s Dream – as Shakespeare in the Park brings the Bard to Redwood City.

Shakespeare’s fanciful tale of love gone awry and come right again, comes to the Sequoia High School campus for three nights, and three days too:  Saturdays at 7pm, August 11th, 18th and 25th – and Sundays at 4pm, August 12th, 19th and 26th.

Midsummer Night’s Dream might be the original rom-com – a tale in which, “the course of true love never did run smooth,” yet in the end, “so shall all the couples three/ever true in loving be.”

All the shows are free – outdoors under the stars, or the sun (depending on when you go) – on the lawn of Sequoia High.  The production runs about two-and-a-half hours – and what you sit on is what you bring, so don’t forget a blanket or a lawn chair.  You are welcome to bring food, but even if you have a very cultured pet, you can’t bring the dog (sorry).

Need more details?  Look here:  Redwood City Events.  Need to brush up on your Shakespeare?  Look here:  Redwood City Public Library.

Tickets still available for George R.R. Martin event

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Adventure film festival coming to Fox Theatre Redwood City

Tickets to see two heavyweights in the world of science fiction engage in discussion at the Fox Theatre next week — Game of Thrones author George R.R. Martin, and Hugo Award-winning illustrator John Picacio — are still available for purchase.

The event from 8 p.m. to 10 p.m. on Aug. 14 and is a benefit for the Locus Science Fiction Foundation, parent to Locus Magazine, a long-standing journal of record for the science fiction and fantasy fields.

During the event, Martin and Picacio will discuss literature, art, and life, followed by a Q&A session with the audience.

Borderlands Books will be on-site selling books. A limited number of signed books will be available for purchase, however, Martin will not be available to sign copies of attendees’ books.

For tickets, which range in price from $59 to $279, go here.

Game of Thrones' George R.R. Martin to speak at Fox Theatre this summer

Red Morton Park set to turn into campground this Friday

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Red Morton Park set to turn into campground this Friday

Camping in Redwood City? You bet.

A family campout is set to be held at the Red Morton Park soccer field from this Friday starting at 5 p.m. till Saturday morning.

The event is considered a great way to get young kids to try out camping.

“You’ll be only minutes fro your house, but it will feel like you’re miles away,” organizers said.

The event is held by the Redwood City Parks and Arts Foundation and the City of Redwood City Parks, Recreation and Community Services Department.

The event will feature BBQ hamburgers, hot dogs, bonfire, storytime, s’mores, games, rock painting and breakfast on Saturday morning, and more, organizers said.

The cost is $20 per person, but registration is required here and ends today.

Locals ‘revere’ new coffee and tea shop in downtown Redwood City

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A new coffee, tea and ice cream shop in Redwood City is getting a lot of attention.

Owner Lily Lai opened Revere Coffee & Tea in late June at 2074 Broadway St. Since then, its initial reviews on Yelp! have been positive.

Lai’s new venture was featured in Palo Alto Online as well as a Hoodline article that was reposted by ABC7 Bay Area.

The shop serves Sightglass coffee from San Francisco, and Three Twins Ice Cream from Petaluma. But as one Yelp reviewer noted, don’t miss out on the teas served at this new spot, called “a special experience.”

“They have a nice selection of teas: several black, green, and herbal,” reviewer Tanya F. noted. “And the tea is served in a glass kettle with glass carafe to pour into so that the tea will stop steeping (genius) and glass cup with extra lining so you don’t burn your paws.”

Food options also seem enticing, like the avocado toast and the Cocosin, which, as described by Lai, is “reduced coconut milk layered over brick toast with a sprinkle of cinnamon dust.”

The shop is located in a space formerly occupied by Comebuy Drinks bubble tea shop, and before that Cafe Zoe.

On Facebook, Lai expressed elation at opening her new business.

“Countless hours of my heart, soul and mind have been poured into @reverecoffeetea,” she said.

Photo: Revere Coffee & Tea Facebook page.


Redwood City affordable housing complex undergoing major rehab

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A 55-unit affordable housing complex in Redwood City is undergoing a major rehabilitation.

The highly-anticipated project is underway two years after the Mosaic Garden apartments at 3752 Rolison Rd. was purchased as part of a partnership between San Mateo County and the nonprofit MidPen Housing, with the goal of preventing displacement of residents amid soaring housing costs.

Today, San Mateo County officials posted a video on Facebook of the start of construction at the apartment building located east of Highway 101 near Marsh Road.

In 2016, the county’s Board of Supervisors approved lending $5.8 million to MidPen Housing to purchase and upgrade the property, then called Atherton Court. The loan was the county’s first approved through its Affordable Rental Acquisition and Preservation Program.

“At a time of soaring rents – San Mateo County is among the most expensive places to live in the nation – Mosaic Garden is now protected as affordable housing for the long term,” the county said.

Last year, the San Mateo Daily Journal penned a piece about how Mid-Pen Housing’s purchase of the property helped a family continue their mission of saving up to purchase their own home, as they were assured their rent would remain stable.


Men plead no contest to ear-biting attack outside Burger King

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Two transients pleaded no contest Monday to charges connected with a vicious assault in Redwood City in June during which a piece of the victim’s left ear was bitten off, according to prosecutors.

The incident unfolded about 2 p.m. Friday afternoon when transients Scott Richard Anderson, 33, and Ben Whited, 28, were panhandling at Whipple Avenue and El Camino Real, according to the San Mateo County District Attorney’s Office.

Anderson’s girlfriend, who is Whited’s cousin and also a transient, went into a nearby Burger King to use the restroom and encountered the victim, a 54-year-old man. She said the man was being unkind to her and struck her, an allegation the victim denied. A witness at the scene did not see the alleged assault, prosecutors said. The woman went back to tell Anderson and Whited, who “charged down El Camino to a bus stop where the victim was standing and viciously attacked him,” prosecutors said.

“Anderson punched the victim and put him in a ‘rear naked chokehold;’ Whited also joined in punching the victim and then bit a part of the victim’s left ear off,” prosecutors said.

After the attackers fled, police were called to the scene and found the victim bleeding profusely and requiring hospital treatment.

On Monday, both Anderson and Whited, who have been in custody since the attack, pleaded no contest to felony assault and sentenced to 133 years county jail. They received credit for time served, allowing their release. Each were placed on three years of supervised probation, ordered to have no contact with the victim, and ordered not to possess weapons. They must submit to search and seizure by law enforcement, prosecutors said. They’ll also be required to enter counseling.

The men will return to court Sept. 19 to receive a Prop. 63 firearms relinquishment report and for the court to determine restitution to the victim.

Photo: Yelp.

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