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Help on the field

Posted: Friday, Dec 9th, 2016

Officers learn lifesaving techniques during all-day course

WATSONVILLE -- Police officers from Watsonville and beyond gathered Wednesday to learn advanced medical techniques aimed to help them on the field.
If used correctly, the techniques could be applied among themselves, civilians and perpetrators alike, saving innumerable lives. 
"It's honestly valuable training to have to be able to assist the

Historical display outlines Ford’s history

Posted: Friday, Dec 9th, 2016
WATSONVILLE -- There was a time when Ford's Department Store was a lynchpin of Santa Cruz County commerce, drawing shoppers from far and wide to find bargains for farm and home.
The building and the business evolved throughout the years, but its importance to the community never changed, said Pajaro Valley Historical Association archivist Lou Arbanas.
"It's sometimes

Tapping into a growing industry

Posted: Friday, Dec 9th, 2016

Group helps women interested in marijuana

WATSONVILLE -- In a small meeting room above the Appleton Grill Thursday, a group of women gathered to have lunch and talk shop about pot.
The meeting included business professionals, blue- and white-collar workers and nurses, all of whom were hoping to learn about the burgeoning marijuana industry, and what their

New mayor to be sworn in

Posted: Friday, Dec 9th, 2016
WATSONVILLE -- A week after the vote was certified, Oscar Rios will return to the Watsonville City Council when he is sworn in as mayor Tuesday.
Trina Coffman-Gomez and Felipe Hernandez will also be sworn in after emerging victorious in the Nov. 8 election. Coffman-Gomez retained her District 6 seat by defeating challenger Doreen Martinez by 19 votes, while

Final count sees slim city council victories

Posted: Wednesday, Dec 7th, 2016
SANTA CRUZ COUNTY -- Santa Cruz County's voters cast a record number of votes in the Nov. 8 election, a number likely spurred by the divisive presidential race and a ballot heavily laden with state propositions.
According to Santa Cruz County Clerk Gail Pellerin, who certified the election on Tuesday, voters cast 132,165 votes. Just over 83,000 of these

Impressing the importance of history

Posted: Wednesday, Dec 7th, 2016

Pearl Harbor Survivors Group meets, perhaps for the last time

WATSONVILLE -- Following a year that marked the death of the last two Pearl Harbor survivors of the Watsonville support group, retired service men and children of survivors met Wednesday at California Grill to honor their memory and their service.
The Pearl Harbor Survivors Group has been meeting

Watsonville Police officer retires

Posted: Wednesday, Dec 7th, 2016

K-9 Ellex served five years

WATSONVILLE -- After an illustrious five-year career that saw 125 arrests, a Watsonville Police officer was sent off to retirement during a surprise ceremony Tuesday.
In his career, he also bit a number of suspects and found two loaded firearms with the help of his nose, but that's part of the

Holiday spirit shines at annual tree lighting celebration

Posted: Monday, Dec 5th, 2016
WATSONVILLE -- Hundreds spent Sunday in Watsonville City Plaza for an afternoon multicultural festival followed by Santa's timely arrival and the dramatic lighting of a 35-foot Sequoia Redwood.
The multicultural festival included a Chanukah Menorah lighting, plus dance, choir and other performances.
Near dusk came the moment the young yearned for -- Santa's gallant arrival on the city's 1932

Factory Sale gives shoppers a running start

Posted: Monday, Dec 5th, 2016
WATSONVILLE -- Holiday shoppers got a head start on their gift lists Saturday during the annual Holiday Factory Sale.
This year's sale featured 10 venues, from well-known local businesses such as S. Martinelli & Company and Annieglass to newcomers such as Hidden Fortress Coffee.
"I've heard nothing but success stories from the different vendors that I talked

Bookstore reopens in Watsonville

Posted: Monday, Dec 5th, 2016
WATSONVILLE -- With much fanfare, Watsonville's eight-month bookstore drought ended Saturday when Kelly's Books opened in the Watsonville Square Shopping Center.
Formerly Crossroads Books in the Crossroads Shopping Center, owner Kelly Pleskunas was forced to relocate the store after the landlord declined to extend the lease in April to make way for a Kaiser Permanente health clinic.

Polar Express derailed until further notice

Posted: Friday, Dec 2nd, 2016

Track repairs cited as reason for postponement

CAPITOLA -- The first year that the Train to Christmas Town moved from Watsonville to Santa Cruz and rebranded itself as the Polar Express, rides have been temporarily delayed due to problems with the tracks.
The problem arose when the 10-day notice to inform the Federal Railroad Agency (FRA) that

Observant teacher notices serious condition

Posted: Friday, Dec 2nd, 2016

Student back after brain tumor removed

WATSONVILLE -- According to her teacher George Feldman, Ohlone Elementary School first-grader Elisaura Gonzalez-Vasquez is a bright, sweet girl who plays with her friends and, until recently, participated in class the same as her classmates.
Feldman said he first noticed a problem when he took his class on its daily

Alejo ends Assembly career

Posted: Friday, Dec 2nd, 2016

Set to begin time as Monterey County Supervisor

SACRAMENTO -- Watsonville native and former mayor Luis Alejo will celebrate the end of a six-year run as California Assemblyman on Monday, a term whose successes included raising the state's minimum wage and allowing undocumented residents to receive driver's licenses.
When Alejo left his term as mayor early to

Gang leader to spend life in prison

Posted: Friday, Dec 2nd, 2016

Cabrera guilty of first-degree murder

SANTA CRUZ -- A man described as the most powerful gang leader to ever live in Santa Cruz County will spend life in prison without parole after a jury found him guilty Thursday of first-degree murder.
Oscar "Baby Joker" Cabrera, 40, was also convicted of personal use of a firearm and gang

Freedom Boulevard work underway

Modified: Wednesday, Nov 30th, 2016
WATSONVILLE -- Motorists are advised to take alternate routes during a major reconstruction of Freedom Boulevard.
The project, which began Monday and is expected to wrap up Dec. 22, stretches from Broadis Street to Alta Vista Avenue on Freedom Boulevard.
During the first phase of the project, which will run through Dec. 9, the northbound lanes

Council approves purchase of new fire engines

Posted: Wednesday, Nov 30th, 2016

Fire substation to be studied

WATSONVILLE -- As the Watsonville City Council approved the purchase of two new fire engines Tuesday, officials will look at properties on the east side of the city for a fire substation.
According to Fire Chief Pablo Barreto, the $1.1 million purchase of the two engines manufactured by Pennsylvania-based Kovatch Mobile

Yoga class helps reduce stress, improve focus

Posted: Wednesday, Nov 30th, 2016
WATSONVILLE -- As ethereal music played softly in the background, 30 E.A. Hall Middle School students sat in near silence Tuesday morning as they switched between several basic yoga poses, stretched their muscles and breathed.
"I'd like you to completely quiet the mind, quiet the body," sixth-grade teacher Sandy Cameron told the students, who were each sitting on their

Wetlands advocate named Rotary's Citizen of the Year

Posted: Wednesday, Nov 30th, 2016
WATSONVILLE -- Noelle Antolin has helped countless students become stewards of their local environment, who then pass down their knowledge to their younger peers.
For her efforts, the Freedom Rotary Club honored Antolin as its Citizen of the Year.
"It definitely came as a surprise," she said. "I'm really touched. It's an honor."
Antolin stepped down from her

Dance: A catalyst for change

Posted: Monday, Nov 28th, 2016

Alternative fitness studio, Synergy, focuses on the holidays

APTOS -- Siblings Caitlin and Thomas Fahey built their alternative fitness studio around the idea that individual passions and interests should drive exercise, and in doing so say they have created a community.
Now they are calling on that same community, and for the return of the ‘90s, for a

Walking in a beach wonderland

Posted: Monday, Nov 28th, 2016

Surfin' Santa forced to walk, not row, in successful annual event

CAPITOLA -- Instead of rowing to shore, Santa Claus was forced by inclement weather to sojourn on foot toward the adoring crowd of youngsters in this year's 26th annual Sufin' Santa event.
Despite heavy morning rains and a high tide made up of choppy waves that

Craft fairs, tree lightings and more mark busy weekend

Posted: Monday, Nov 28th, 2016
WATSONVILLE -- The Heritage Holiday Craft & Gift Fair returns for its 36th year Friday through Sunday at the fairgrounds.
In other words, the holiday season in the Pajaro Valley has officially begun.
"It's the kick-off to the holiday season in the Pajaro Valley," said Ron Haedicke, who co-chairs the craft fair with Trevor Sawyer. "You really

Measure D supporters claim victory

Posted: Monday, Nov 28th, 2016

Half-cent sales tax takes effect in April

SANTA CRUZ COUNTY -- The group that promoted Measure D declared victory just before Thanksgiving, two weeks after voters gave the measure a narrow victory.
The transportation measure held onto its required two-thirds majority as the Santa Cruz County Elections Department counted the votes.
As of Monday, 79,340

A first EP; A huge night

Posted: Wednesday, Nov 9th, 2016

Local band Pan Dulce to play at Appleton Saturday

WATSONVILLE -- Right after hitting their one-year anniversary together, local music group Pan Dulce is preparing to drop their first EP as part of their performance at the Appleton Grill Saturday.
The group, which has six members, hails from all

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