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Music: a social, creative outlet

Modified: Tuesday, Nov 1st, 2016

Local learns to balance music, life

LIVE OAK A bass player, Michael Curry was 16 when he first picked up an instrument. What he found was a creative outlet that became an invaluable addition to his life.
Curry never imagined himself playing an instrument, but when a high school friend came

Giving music stores a chance

Modified: Tuesday, Nov 1st, 2016
Jansen Music reopens in Aptos, aims to be more than a store

APTOS -- For almost a century, Jansen Music has been a staple in the music community, offering instruments, equipment, lessons and repair services.
In July, its existence was threatened when the business was displaced from the Crossroads Shopping Center to

'Life would be flat'

Modified: Tuesday, Nov 1st, 2016

Musician Vinny Johnson talks about the role of music in community

APTOS -- In the fourth grade, Vinny Johnson began his musical education on the trumpet.
More of a rock and roller, when he found guitar two years later, he said it just felt "more me." And thus his lifelong

Staying with Sumano's

Modified: Tuesday, Nov 1st, 2016

Son follows father into bakery business as manager

WATSONVILLE -- In 2012, Edgar Sumano made the decision to come to Watsonville and begin working at his father's bakery. 
Sumano's was opened by two brothers in 2001 and has rapidly grown. While Edgar Sumano was frequently around the bakery as a boy, he

‘A good cup of coffee’

Modified: Tuesday, Nov 1st, 2016
Local coffee bean roaster roasts beans to order

SOQUEL -- For the last 11 years, Peter Maestas has worked his way up in the Surf City Coffee Company, eventually making his way to coffee roaster.
Starting in delivery, packaging and pick-up, Maestas mostly did odd jobs and did not start roasting

From scratch, with love

Modified: Tuesday, Nov 1st, 2016

Frozen cookie dough hits Watsonville shelves

WATSONVILLE -- Six years ago, Carolyn and Gary Walter went after Carolyn's dream of creating a business in the kitchen.
From their home in Salinas, sales took off; and now Carolyn's Cookies are sold in several local markets -- including Watsonville.
"I started

The Testicle Festival returns

Modified: Tuesday, Nov 1st, 2016

WATSONVILLE -- Nine years ago, young farmers looking to raise money for the Santa Cruz County Farm Bureau approached the Estrada family with a controversial idea: They wanted to hold a testicle festival.
Today, the tradition continues with Loretta Estrada at the helm, cooking and preparing more than 100 pounds of "Rocky

A new owner, a new name

Modified: Monday, Aug 22nd, 2016

Acupuncturist takes over Watsonville business

WATSONVILLE -- Recently taking over for Corey Miller at what was formerly called Watsonville Community Acupuncture, Caitlin Elfving is the new owner at Flux Acupuncture Lounge.
"I've been treating patients since 2007 when I started my internship," Elfving said.
Instead of using her license to stay in

Patient transport: An ‘in-between job’

Modified: Monday, Aug 22nd, 2016

SANTA CRUZ -- In a state of transition, Jesse Sabala found a new career path through patient transport for Dignity Health.
"I had seen within the facility, job openings for transport and I have a background in home health," he said. "I am familiar with moving people, there weren't as many tools back then.

Putting down roots

Modified: Monday, Aug 22nd, 2016

Watsonville dentist serves same community for decades

WATSONVILLE -- For almost all his life, Robin Albright DDS said he was fascinated with the medical field. Now with an expansive career behind him, he has weathered changes in his field of dentistry by finding his niche in the community of Watsonville.

Up to speed

Modified: Tuesday, Jul 19th, 2016

Local cardiologist brings current techniques to Watsonville

WATSONVILLE -- Dr. Benjamin Potkin MD recites the process to discovering and treating a heart attack like he is reading a page out of a medical how-to guide.
A cardiologist at the Monterey Bay Cardiac & Vascular Center, Potkin serves the Watsonville community by diagnosing

Ancient art revival

Modified: Tuesday, Jul 12th, 2016

Encaustic art taught, practiced in Santa Cruz County

With origins rooted in ancient Egypt and Greece, the practice of burning and turning wax into art has been long standing. 
Also known as encaustic art, Santa Cruz County is home to a school and cluster of artists that specialize in the form. 

Not always pretty

Modified: Tuesday, Jul 12th, 2016

Artist balances craft with art to make living

WATSONVILLE -- Taught how to weld by his father and having access to the equipment early on, fabricating things out of metal has been a hobby for local artist Paul Cheney since high school.
Leaving art behind when he was drafted into the

Breaking into the business

Modified: Thursday, Jun 16th, 2016

Tattoo artist talks about his journey to Freedom Tattoo

WATSONVILLE -- Rather than being hung on the walls of galleries or homes, Nolan Hatton's portfolio is exhibited on an assortment of limbs and the bodies of his clients.
A tattoo artist, Hatton has found a profitable, while sometimes painful, way of

'Twisting my wire'

Modified: Wednesday, Jun 1st, 2016

Local artist finds fulfillment in creating sculptures

CAPITOLA -- Hanging from the ceiling, established in cement, and some standing taller than the average human, in the spaces where skeletal creations cannot be found -- materials and reference books reside.
For years Capitola resident and artist Wendy Ballen has worked to

Training for success

Modified: Thursday, May 19th, 2016

Local instructor pushes students to think outside of agriculture

WATSONVILLE -- In the realm of education, vocational schools can seem pale in comparison to local community and four-year universities. In Watsonville, Alli Dam is one instructor at Center for Employment Training (CET) who aims to use vocational training to fill a critical

Turning on the lights

Modified: Thursday, May 19th, 2016

Drama and sole music teacher gives students artistic outlet

WATSONVILLE -- At Watsonville High School, in the building where once there was choir and band being taught, now there is mostly silence. 
Except for when teacher Kip Allert brings it back to life.
The sole user, he uses the space to teach

Aiming to inspire

Modified: Thursday, May 19th, 2016

In alignment with changing standards, teacher tries to create positive learning environment

WATSONVILLE -- Ohlone Elementary Teacher Melissa Dennis is no stranger to standardized teaching in public schools.
A teacher for the last eight years, Dennis found her passion for teaching through being an advocate for preschool children in Head

A student, teacher, practitioner

Modified: Thursday, May 19th, 2016
Cabrillo student comes full circle

APTOS -- From student to teacher, adjunct psychology professor Kim Cardilla has a long history with Cabrillo College dating back more than 10 years.
This fall will mark her exit as she prepares to leave campus for full-time clinical work.
"The first time that I realized

Helping victims, seeking justice

Modified: Thursday, May 19th, 2016

DA Jeff Rosell a prosecutor for two decades

SANTA CRUZ -- When he first went to UC Santa Cruz, Santa Cruz County District Attorney Jeff Rosell didn't intend to wind up in the top position, or even to become an attorney.
Originally a biology major, he came to question that choice after

Raising the bar

Modified: Thursday, May 19th, 2016

Water agency focusing on needed changes to system

WATSONVILLE -- Aging infrastructure below Watsonville, where 60 percent of the pipes are now 60 years old, have caused officials to reevaluate the speed of replacing water mains.
While previous plans have Water Division Supervisor Steve Hernandez responsible for replacing one mile a year,

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