Friday, February 19, 2010

Learn about food with Ecoterra

Looking for something interesting to do tonight?

If you're curious about the food you consume every day, the nice folks at Ecoterra in Village West will be hosting a discussion and film screening at Scripps College. The program includes speakers about food in America and food served on college campuses. A free screening of the documentary Food Inc. will be shown. Ecoterra will be providing organic food from their store.

The event begins at 7:30 p.m. at the Motley at Scripps College and is open to the public. See film trailer below.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Budget workshop tonight

Put a smile on the mayor's face by attending tonight's community budget workshop. The event allows residents to learn about the city's finances, vote on priorities for the city and participate in the decision making process as Claremont begins to consider its next 2-year budget cycle.

After less than 15 residents appeared at last week's workshop at the Blaisdell Center, Mayor Corey Calaycay was not happy about the low turnout.

"People often complain about issues after the fact but this is an opportunity for them to be involved and engaged as the process is unfolding," Calaycay said. "I'm hoping to see a much larger turnout on Tuesday."

The workshop will take place in the Padua Room at the Hughes beginning at 7 p.m.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Pizza 'N Such on Today Show

In case you missed it, you can watch the Today Show piece on Pizza 'N Such by clicking on the link here.

Film crews from the show visited the Village restaurant in January to look at their new menu design and interview "menu engineer" Gregg Rapp. Pizza 'N Such owners Mike and Sue Verbal and their daughter Laura took a crash course from Rapp to help beef up their menu.

After taking the course, the Verbals tinkered with their menu's design, color, text and placement of food items. Mike Verbal said the subtle changes have made a big impact on sales.

"It brings in customers more regularly because instead of just getting the same pizza, people order different things off the menu," he said. "I wish I knew about this 30 years ago. I wouldn't be here right now. I'd be retired!"

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Aloha trolley

Claremont's trolley has moved on to greener pastures. And sandy beaches. At Tuesday's city council meeting, city manager Jeff Parker announced that the city had sold the trolley to a buyer in Hawaii.

Since the council decided to end the trolley experiment in April, the vehicle has been collecting dust while parked at the city yard.

Using a trolley broker, the city sold the trolley to the buyer at a cost of $75,000. During the planning stages, the city estimated the total cost of the trolley to be $1.3 million over 3 years. It only ran for about 5 months.

The trolley was shipped off from a Long Beach port last week and could already be at its destination. Several city officials I talked to didn't know who bought it or what it will be doing.

Bon Voyage trolley! While you were the butt of many jokes in Claremont, you will also be missed by many in the community.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Working up an appetite

I've been hearing stories about Newt Gingrich visiting the Press after his big speech at Scripps College last week. Apparently, Gingrich worked up an appetite after signing all those books following his address. He was spotted munching away at the restaurant with 2 other gentleman and left around 11 p.m.

Gingrich met with students last Wednesday throughout the afternoon and ate dinner at the Malott dining hall before his speech.

From what I've heard, a group of liberal-minded local drinkers at the Press were plotting how to best heckle the conservative visionary. In the end, their better judgment prevailed and they left him to enjoy his second dinner in peace.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Newt Gingrich and Jesse Jackson talk minorities and women

In the last week, political leaders Newt Gingrich and Jesse Jackson have both given speeches in Claremont. At Scripps College on Wednesday, Gingrich talked about what it takes to be an effective leader. Last week at CMC, Jackson gave a speech honoring Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Here's what the two men had to say about the challenges of minorities/women in this country.

Newt Gingrich

"Women face probably a higher challenge than men, not so much in the form of discrimination. Remember more women than men vote in American elections. I think women have a particular challenge because women tend to get sucked into trying to do everything simultaneously. You have the mommy track, the professional track and the wife track, whereas men are basically a lot more selfish."

"If you look around the country, in academics [for example], just look how many women presidents and women deans and provosts there are, it's pretty clear that we're beginning to be a country where talent competes rather than gender or race."

Jesse Jackson

"[Minorities] have achieved freedom but not equality. From the last 5 graduating classes from this school [CMC], the white student went on to make more money than the black students. They have more life options, because that’s the real world."

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Newt Gingrich speaking tonight

Former Speaker of the House of Representatives Newt Gingrich will speak at Scripps College tonight at 7:30 p.m.

Gingrich's speech, "Effective Leadership for Real Change," will address the nature of leadership, what he has learned from his active political career, policy changes in environmental protection, and health care policy from beyond a partisan divide.

The event will take place at the Garrison Theater and is open to the public. The event is free and open to the public, and a book signing will follow the talk.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Ginger Elliott on retirement

Ginger Elliott retired from Claremont Heritage after 25 years as Executive Director. Here's what she had to say about moving on to the next chapter of her life.

"I feel a little sad. It's hard to let go. It's going to take me a little while to unwind and just enjoy things. It's an emotional time. But I feel good about the organization. I think the organization is doing well. We get stronger and stronger boards every year and [new Executive Director] Lisa [Rupple] is going to be a terrific director. She gets everything right away. And she's young and she has energy."

"I'll still volunteer for a couple organizations. I'll volunteer for Heritage whenever they need me. There is still some unfinished business here. There are historic props and materials at Padua Hills Theater that need to bring up and put into display cases. We promised Jerry [Tessier] that we would do that. I'm going to do a little traveling. I have a stack of books of course. I can finish the crossword puzzle every morning instead of going off to work and coming home to finish it. And that's really it. I feel fortunate retiring in a town where I know a lot of people and feel connected. I'm sure there will be lots of opportunities that come up where I can help out so I'm looking forward to that."