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2011 in Review: Power outages, school board shifts, Costa trial

It's a year for the history books in La Cañada.

December 28, 2011|By Valley Sun Staff
  • Randy Strapazon, left, informs a community resident, Nina Parkinson, about the 9.10.11 event at the Farmers Market in La Canada on Saturday, August 27, 2011. (Cheryl A. Guerrero/Staff Photographer)
Randy Strapazon, left, informs a community resident,…

La Cañada saw its share of troubling news in 2011, the most controversial being a complaint filed against a La Cañada High School teacher for having made ethnic slurs in her math classrooms. But there also were celebratory moments — for the victors in city council and school board elections as well as for individuals who achieved recognition in their fields.

Taking advantage of a once-in-a-lifetime occasion, an ad hoc committee, giving a nod to La Cañada’s unique ZIP code, organized a 9.10.11 weekend of events in September that drew participants across a broad spectrum of the populace. They not only were willing to party, but to donate time volunteering at specially designated areas in need of some care.

Two events that occurred in 2009 were still making headlines this year: the runaway-truck crash on Foothill at Angeles Crest and the Station fire, the county’s biggest blaze in modern history. The murder trial of the driver in the April 2009 crash that took two lives got underway in June of this year. In September he was convicted of manslaughter and reckless driving. With the rest of the Southland, we waited for 18 months for Angeles Crest Highway to be reopened, as it had been heavily damaged by storm runoff directly related to the damage sustained in the Angeles National Forest during the Station fire. That reopening — promised several times, with various targeted dates —finally came in August.

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The school board, wrangling with budget issues forced on it by the state, continued to search for ways to boost revenue. In October it was announced that the local district would offer naming rights for facilities to generous donors.

With 2011 poised to go down in the history books, we invite you to take a look at news highlights that took place in La Cañada Flintridge, month by month:

January

—The year begins with La Cañada High School’s Evanne Friedmann presiding as queen of the 122nd Tournament of Roses Parade, which also featured the local Tournament association’s colorful “3-2-1 Dig!” float.

—La Cañada High School junior Robin Miketta is named Miss La Cañada Flintridge during a chamber fundraiser at the La Cañada Flintridge Country Club. Anais Wenn, principal of Palm Crest Elementary, is honored as Educator of the Year.

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