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June 12, 2021

Birthday, baptism and music that’s contagious

Watched the Grammys and it proved that if you wait long enough everything will come back around … even the Beach Boys and Paul McCartney. Though I’m not so sure those acts improved a ho-hum show this year. Tony Bennett, however, is another story. Born as Anthony Dominick Benedetto, he’s 85, the voice is still crooningly clear and strong and his passion for the music is contagious. His Duets II album coming out soon is on my iTunes “buy it” list.

While we’re on the subject of “ageless” Italians, though he can’t really sing, a big Happy almost 60th Birthday, to my buddy, Ernie Filice … May all your Rotary Club fines (after this one) be under $6 and may you shoot your age on the golf course more than two dozen times.

Priceless to see the photographs we took of all the students from Christopher High School who showed up to assemble the goody packs for the American troops overseas. When I fulfilled a pledge to myself Tuesday and dropped off some goodies at lunch into the barrel at the CHS office, I was worried. It was empty. But they must have just cleared it out because the CHS students and the Operation Interdependence volunteers who packed the dining commons had enough for 5,000 goody bags, plus there were 1,400 letters to the troops. Nice going Gilroy. If you’re interested in helping out, stop by the donated office space for OI next to Juicy Burger every Tuesday from 4 to 6 p.m.

Not sure what time it is for the San Jose Sharks. Actually, I am. It’s roller coaster time. They’re like the Great White Stanley Cup bound Sharks one game, and like the Nurse Sharks bound for the bottom of the sea the next. Consistency is a hallmark of greatness, and the Sharks just aren’t there yet.

Don DeLorenzo is there. The Gilroy Golf Course pro/operator who now also runs the Gavilan College Golf Course has landed a First Tee Program for South County. It’s a perfect place for young people to learn a lifelong sport and more. DeLo worked hard, along with Gilroyan Scot Hathaway, who is the general manager of Los Lagos Golf Course in San Jose, to make it happen. Classes will be on Fridays from 4 to 5:30 p.m. starting March 16 and running into mid-May. Sign up at if this sounds good: We make the game of golf accessible to all youth, regardless of background. Participants learn to appreciate diversity, resolve conflicts, build confidence and set goals for their future. We focus on four life skills categories –- interpersonal, self-management, goal-setting, and resilience – and Nine Core Values – honesty, integrity, sportsmanship, respect, confidence, responsibility, perseverance, courtesy and judgment.

Ron Fellows, a regular at the Gilroy Golf Course Links, has those values (particularly strong in the resilience area) and he has a free pizza dinner for his co-victory with Ron Kretz in the recent photo contest – “Name all the members of the historic Gilroy Little League team.” The two Ron Amigos are taking their wives out for pizza and beer, and no, neither asked for the certificate to be ready before Valentine’s Day.

“Love it, love it, love it …” is what judge Christina Aguilera often says on The Voice, yet another made for TV singing show that I’m liking more than American Idol.

Not liking the idea of paseos downtown whatsoever is website commentor despratehowsife who says: “Do you really think paseos will bring people to DownTown? Take a drive down Monterey St and you will see that its Ghetto with a capital G! Get a clue from Morgan Hill or some other cute downtown and you will see that downtown Gilroy needs a face lift with 2 complete blocks OVERHAULED …” Well, then there’s this thought, too, from a paseo supportive Community Pulse board member: “Also. if there is a place where performances can happen outdoors this will help bring people downtown.” Hopefully the City Council will thoroughly think through the next move as the sales tax dollars just keep rolling in. Let’s do something positive for all the community this time around, not just send the cash into pensions and raises for firefighters and police. That would be a relief.

Coincidentally, The Relief, a local group with some real promise, is playing at the 9 Lives Club in downtown Gilroy Saturday night along with another group, 1989. Julian Mireles stopped by to let me know Saturday’s show will be top notch. I took a listen via Facebook and, if you have a young person who’s lamenting that there’s nothing to do in Gilroy, buy ’em a ticket. It’s $5 in advance.

Missed the ticket for Saturday night’s Chamber bash and Spice of Life Awards at San Juan Oaks. Still think Gilroy’s annual recognition event should be held at “The Lodge on the Hill” which is the cleverly re-cast name for the Elks Lodge, but that’s another column item. Sorry to miss being able to join in the standing ovations for John Blaettler and Lani Yoshimura, Man and Woman of the Year, respectively. Both are longtime contributors to the community in quiet and meaningful ways. But, at Casa de Derry, Jenny and I hosted the party after granddaughter Tyler Grace’s baptism at the hands of uncle Father Dan Derry. The sun bathed Tyler Grace as the waters welcomed her in a beautiful ceremony before many family members and friends. At the house, there were many kids romping on the lawn afterward, while the adults mingled and enjoyed each other’s company. People stayed a good long time and it was the type of day that you’re so thankful for as you’re cleaning up. God bless Tyler Grace with many more days like it.

Reach Editor Mark Derry at [email protected]


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