John Bianco, Ernie’s son, will continue the tradition of running his model trains from Thanksgiving through Christmas Eve (Dec. 24). Weather permitting, trains will run on five tracks every evening except Mondays on Adele Ave. from 6:30 to about 9:00.
The engines and cars change daily. As many as 100 visitors a night (up to 300 on Christmas Eve) came in past years, including children brought by parents who themselves watched the trains when they were young.
Ernie also began the Christmas Eve tradition of curbside luminaria (candles in paper bags). Over the years, neighbors added their own, so a row of the softly glowing lights lines Adele.
Articles about Ernie’s trains appeared in the Mountain View Voice in 2010; 2012 (pages 1 and 9); 2016; and 2018 (pages 1 and 17).
A 2015 article in the San Francisco Chronicle features photos by James Tensuan, son of neighbor Donna Tensuan.
The Ice Cream Social, held at Monta Loma Park on Sunday, September 5, was a huge success. With the exhibits widely spaced for Covid safety, the crowd spread all the way to Thompson Avenue. We didn’t realize until later that the welcome-table volunteers had signed in almost 300 attendees, who enjoyed a selection of packaged ice cream treats while meeting their neighbors.
Tee-shirt sales totaled 35, but some shirts (and logo items) remain available for purchase.
Neighborhood participants were CERT members (safety information), Gary Heyman (balloons), Bill Lambert (Friends of Mountain View Parks), Tom Purcell (Monta Loma history and bike-registration stickers), Alan Whitaker (monarch butterfly and native milkweed info and plants), Gloria Jackson (cotton candy), Jill Rakestraw (plant exchange), Karla Valente (gardening information), and Victor Brilon’s band, Nobody’s Girlfriend. Marty Pulvers staffed the tee-shirt and logo-items sales tables, Jim Cochran took photos, and Bill Cranston provided the A-frame signs that reminded us to attend.
Other participants were Monta Loma School’s PTA, Mountain View Educational Foundation, Canopy, Recycling and Zero Waste, and a MV police officer and dog. The Bookmobile and the Fire Department were unable to participate, due to Covid and wildfires.
Mayor Ellen Kamei returned early from a trip in order to attend, and stayed for 90 minutes. MVWSD trustees Laura Berman and Ellen Wheeler also came. They all appreciated the opportunity to meet Monta Loma residents, and their appreciation was echoed by the neighbors.
Thanks to everyone who helped make this year’s event such a huge success. Photos are here.
Show your pride in our neighborhood by wearing a Monta Loma tee shirt. Some red shirts and gray shirts ordered for sale at the Ice Cream Social are still available. Three adult styles are available, but only in gray or red. Click on each style for a photo.
One gray Youth shirt, size Extra Small (2-4), is also available.
To inquire about any of these remaining shirts, open an email message to Marilyn. If you’re using a webmail service, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
It’s time to plan a block party for this summer or fall. Begin now if you will block off a street, because it takes up to 30 days to have your permit application approved. Information is on the Block Parties page.
Please participate in our virtual Annual Meeting and Board Election on Wednesday, June 16, to meet your board candidates and hear the invited speakers.
Register now for the the Annual Meeting meeting here. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email with information about submitting questions for the program speakers by 7:00 p.m. on Friday, June 11, and joining the meeting on June 16. To submit questions, choose “Q&A” in the blue banner. The “Polls” option is your ballot.
7:05 p.m. Meeting begins with the president’s update.
7:15 p.m. Jessica Chohan and Hillary Miller will give an update from the Monta Loma Park fence group.
7:30 p.m. Program: Mountain View Mayor Ellen Kamei and MVWSD Superintendent Ayindé Rudolph will respond to questions previously submitted.
Board Election information
Our current board members, with the exception of the First Vice President, are interested in staying on. In addition to filling that position, we would also like to add another member at large. (Members at large have no designated responsibility.) The list of board members is here. Scroll down for a description of the board positions.
If you like what your board members are doing, attend and vote for them. If not, replace any or all of them. If you appreciate living in our neighborhood, serving on the Board is a good way to give back.
To place your name on the ballot or to request an absentee ballot, contact Baidra Murphy at email@example.com by 6 p.m. on Friday, June 11.
Cast your ballot here.
The weather on Saturday, May 1, 2021 was perfect, and helped make our garage sale a huge success. More than 50 people had registered to hold a sale or set out their free items in their driveway. In addition, many others also posted their addresses and for-sale or give-away items on the MLN email list. Others just set their no-longer-needed items out at the end of their driveways.
Messages of appreciation included these:
R: Thanks for organizing… a great turnout! Much of our long-unused stuff is now in new hands.
N: We met some new neighbors, and it was fun. I got rid of some things I never use.
D: We walked around for 2.5 hours, viewing goods, but mostly chatting. It was wonderful to see old friends and meet new people.
L: I had the best emotional day in a very long time! To see people, converse, see them find treasures that lit up their faces, and to simply give things away, all contributed to a memorable day. This was way more than a neighborhood garage sale. This was a glimpse of normal. The timing was perfect. Thank you for the hard work to make it happen for all of us.
A group of neighbors is organizing, in agreement with the Monta Loma Neighborhood Association, a campaign to inform and mobilize the neighborhood to oppose the building of a fence around the Monta Loma Park and maintain access to the park.
You can find a fact sheet with details of the campaign here.
The group offers several ways to get engaged:
From Tom Purcell, Monta Loma Neighborhood Watch Captain:
I encourage everyone to register a bike of any value, but many police departments no longer offer this service. Instead, they direct people to https://bikeindex.org/, a non-profit online bike registry.
The bikeindex site offers easy, step-by-step instructions for registration and provides a QR sticker to place on the bike. If the bike is found, anyone with a smart phone can quickly determine whether it has been reported as stolen, and reunite the bike with its owner.
But if you prefer not to create an account yourself, I have created a Monta Loma group account to register bikes. The MLNA has generously purchased a supply of the QR stickers, and I am offering them free to any residents who would like to place one on their bike(s).
I’ll also give stickers to those who can register bikes themselves, or who have already registered their bikes with bikeindex. Just log onto your bikeindex account on your smart phone, scan the QR code, send me your address, and I’ll leave you a sticker. At the URL encoded by the sticker, you can then click a link to register the sticker to your specific bike.
If you would like some help, or join our Monta Loma bikeindex account, contact me at MontaLomaNBC@gmail.com and I will help you through the process.
BTW, to see “10 bicycle protection tips to secure your bike from thieves” go to https://velosock.com/blogs/blog/10-bicycle-protection-tips-to-secure-your-bike-from-thieves.
Ernie Bianco’s son, John, and the rest of the Bianco family continued the tradition of running his model trains evenings on Adele Ave. between Thanksgiving and Christmas.
On Christmas Eve Kate Shih played her trumpet and Elna’s daughter-in-law, Kelly McCoy-Prael, sang Christmas carols.
Articles about the trains display have appeared in the December 21, 2018
, issue of the Mountain View Voice
(on pages 1 and 17), the December 12, 2016
, issue of the Mountain View Voice
, in the December 21, 2010
, issue, and on pages 1 and 9 of the November 30, 2012
, issue. A 2015 article
in the San Francisco Chronicle
features photos by James Tensuan, son of neighbor Donna Tensuan.
Thanks to everyone who helped make this year’s event such a huge success. The four volunteers at the two welcome tables signed in over 300 attendees who enjoyed the free ice cream and toppings while meeting their neighbors.
Photos of the 2019 Ice Cream Social are here.
New this year were Monta Loma Neighborhood logo items, which are available for purchase. Twenty-nine Monta Loma tee shirts were sold but there are still some available for purchase.
The Mobile Library staff welcomed 135 new and long-time patrons to the bookmobile, and a crew from the Fire Department brought an engine. Representatives of the Recreation Department offered literature on upcoming classes and events, and Janine McCurdy brought information on the Zero Waste and Food Scraps & Recycling programs.
The Monta Loma History display showed early photos of the neighborhood and a binder of the MLNA’s early history. Neighborhood Watch information was also on the history table, and the CERT display offered information about keeping us safe during a disaster. Laureen Lam taught us about allergy-fighting plants for our yards.
Familiar faces from Mountain View Trees (which has merged with Canopy) answered questions about tree problems.
Attractions for the children included Gizmo Gary’s balloon creations, face painting and games, and Gloria’s cotton-candy machine.
Mayor Lisa Matichak, Police Chief Max Bosel, and two members of the MVLAHSD Board attended, but Police Sgt. Wally Magee may have been the most popular guest because he brought a very friendly police dog. They all appreciated the opportunity to meet Monta Loma residents, and their appreciation was echoed by the neighbors.