Editor's Desk: Choo choo update
PUMPKIN SEASON is here, and no doubt some residents' thoughts have drifted to the now-defunct Pumpkin Patch on Grant Road.
Well, the Pumpkin Patch is gone, friends. But here's a secret: The choo-choo train still runs.
As some may recall, the quarter-scale train (built by Mountain View's Schmitz family and their friend Mike McCarthy) was disassembled and moved last year. It was reassembled at Spina Farms in South San Jose and is now available for riding, say the farm's operators.
"It's up and it's going right now," Linda Spina told the Voice earlier this week.
Spina said many parents and children who rode the train in Mountain View have already found it at its new location. You can find it too, near the fruit stand on the corner of Bailey Avenue and Santa Teresa Road.
MOUNTAIN VIEW resident Robert Sapirman is more than just a master chef at Parcel 104 in Santa Clara — he's also a philanthropist.
This Friday, Sapirman is dedicating his services as lead chef for the March of Dimes Sixth Annual Celebrity Chefs and Master Vintners. The San Jose event, which will raise thousands for the nonprofit's South Bay chapter, is also being hosted by culinary bigwigs Jim Stump of A.P. Stump's and Clyde Griesbach of LaVanda in Palo Alto — along with 20 other of "Silicon Valley's premier chefs" and many of the region's most accomplished vintners.
Tickets are not cheap — $225 each or $400 for two — but shoot, that means they might still be available. And obviously it's for a good cause. (The group's mission is "To improve the health of babies by preventing birth defects, premature birth and infant mortality.") Call (408) 260-7629 or visit www.marchofdimes.com for more information.
ANOTHER CHARITABLE group is holding a different South Bay celebration this weekend:
"Humane Society Silicon Valley will celebrate the groundbreaking of its innovative Animal Community Center this Saturday, Oct. 6 at 9 a.m. in Milpitas (901 Ames Avenue)," wrote Laura Fulda. "The center will serve the entire Bay Area region and be a model for animal shelters nationwide."
For more, visit www.hssv.org.
EARLIER THIS WEEK I received a report on Mountain View Whisman teacher Cathy Baur, who was honored Sept. 24 with a Teacher of the Year award from the county.
Baur, a first-grade teacher at Monta Loma, was granted the award for her "exemplary talents and tireless dedication to leadership and support of her colleagues in her grade level and throughout Monta Loma School as she also works as the English Language Development Coordinator."
Don Frances can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.