One violin tune that inspires real sympathy

Anyone who has witnessed the students in the violin program at Antonio Del Buono Elementary School perform has to marvel at the discipline and talent. There are “wee” little ones who intently pluck the strings and slide across the instrument and there are the “older” students who are practiced and can “feel” the music. The program, born in 1999 and founded by teacher Lori Franke, is on the chopping block. Half the budget will vanish. That’s $17,000 gone. So, MayorAl and good guy garlic chefs Sam Bozzo and Gene Sakahara are throwing a dinner at 6 p.m. Friday (tonight) at the IFDES Lodge-Portuguese Hall at 250 Old Gilroy St. Call (650) 305-0168 for tickets or buy at the door. It’s $25 pasta, bread, salad and the amazing young violinists – plus the good feeling in your stomach that you get when you lend a hand.
Handsome and bright is a good description for the brightly painted utility boxes with Gilroy and patriotic scenes around town. What a great city-public partnership it’s turned out to be – a real sign that the community cares about aesthetics and can make the effort to be-a-u-ti-fy Gilroy.
Has to be … Gilroy has to be the taqueria capital of California. Not sure what the count is, but am sure it’s mounting. Another eatery is about to spring up on 10th and Monterey Street, thankfully replacing the abandoned building that was a soccer store and used to be a corner diner. It’s Taqueria Ameca, the 99th fast burrito-taco food joint in town … 
In downtown this Saturday are cool cars, plenty of music, adult refreshments and good chow highlighting the Garlic City Fun Run and Car Show. Got a cool car? Fire up the computer engine, get the form at and show up. Registration begins at 11 am.  “Shine and show” from 3 to 9 p.m. Yak with cool car owners, enjoy a Silva Sausage sandwich and listen to the “Bombshell Bullys” rock the house.  Bonus: this year the raffle will solely benefit Operation Interdependence, the group which sends goodie bags, letters and care to the men and women serving our country overseas. Lots of good prizes, including a big-screen TV, in the raffle from notable business donors like Image & Design, Sunshine Bicycles, Station 55, Bozzo’s Union 76, the Village Car Wash, Nob Hill Foods and The Claddagh. And if you can’t go Saturday, head on down Friday eve for the Fifth Street Live Music Series featuring Gilroy’s own super-duper music man, Junior “Junebug” Diaz and the band JJ Hawg.
Speaking of …  bumped into retired former Gilroy Unified School District Superintendent Edwin Diaz at the Garlic Festival bash at the Giants game who’s back in town after superintendenting down south. Good to see him, and I’m sure he’s glad that he’s not having to deal with the dire budget situations confronting the schools now which reminds me …

Note to City Council: Save the South Valley Middle School pool, and take it over in perpetuity (or until the next big earthquake) as a community asset.
The only all-star game that’s an asset to its professional sport, is baseball’s. As KNBR’s Gary “Rabinovitz” Radnich might say, “your thoughts please”:
• As fans we vote for the players. How about letting the fans pick the announcers, too? Clips from the Top 5 broadcast teams on the voting websites, and it’s tell it goodbye to Joe Buck.
• Just about the only worthwhile clip I’ve heard when a player’s “mic’d-up” – LA Dodger Matt Kemp calling it the “San Francisco Show.” Knowing that our own “Mayor of, by and for the People”, Richie Perez, a devout and misguided Dodger fan, heard those words go nationwide made the music even sweeter. Now, let’s hope the second half is indeed the “San Francisco Show.”
• Melky Cabrera as MVP means … yep, those now-famous Milkmen and Milkmaid fans at AT&T Park have been busy sewing new MVP logos onto their milk uniforms.
• Matt Cain, #18. Solid. Needs a theme song. How about a play on a tune from the flick “Bull Durham”? Change the classic “60-minute Man” into “16-inning Man.”
Man, I get nostalgic when I get a press release from the STAR summer theater program at Gavilan College. My three girls loved it when they were growing up. The costumes, the singing, the performing and the dancing have been going on since 1985. So, this weekend the STAR show is on at the college theater. Great place to take the kids. It’s Disney’s “Beauty and the Beast Jr.” on stage this year. “Be Our Guest!” shouts the press release. Shows on Friday at 7 p.m. and Saturday at 4 p.m. – $12 for adults, $8 for children and a packed house always makes the show more fun.
No fun at all, to head to Starbucks for your morning coffee and have a pit bull attack your dog and, subsequently, you. So very sad for the owner, who had to make the rough decision to put her dog down, and so damn freakin’ unnecessary. Of course, the “little chicken” pit bull owner fled the scene, proving once again the “pit bull attracts punks” theory is literally and, unfortunately, a vicious circle. Honestly, maybe Gilroy’s City Council should consider an outright ban on the breed altogether.
Altogether now, support local, not corporate businesses when possible. The “management” at Starbucks, predictably,  had “no comment” after the attack just outside their doors. Just up the street is the always friendly and super local First Street Coffee. Go in and say hello to the owners, mother and daughter team Konni and Kassi, and spend your hard-earned dollars on a fine locally owned and operated coffee house. 
Reach Editor Mark Derry at [email protected]

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