Santa Cruz Connected: News You May Have Missed + The Best of Local Social Media

santa cruz connected: jan

Underneath all the rain we got last month, some pretty interesting things happened in Santa Cruz.

Two local artists were honored for their work and UCSC put on an exhibit celebrating our printmaking past.

A blog post was published that every local chocolate lover will want to read, a high-tech instrument was found on a local beach, and an entertaining video of Santa Cruz from the 1950s popped up on Youtube.

All that, plus new businesses, friends to follow, and the best of the month from local social media in this month’s edition of Santa Cruz Connected.

Classic Tourism Video Of 1955 Santa Cruz

Ordinarily, interesting local Youtube videos will be found at the end of these articles, but this one deserves a place at the top. It’s a 1955 Chamber of Commerce video that includes great footage of Santa Cruz, Watsonville, and the San Lorenzo Valley. (The video is a little choppy at times.) At just under 20 minutes, it is a bit long, but it’s well worth the watch.

Awards For The Arts: Shmuel Thaler & David Sullivan

Two local artists and educators were recognized for their work in January. Shmuel Thaler, longtime photographer for the Santa Cruz Sentinel and photojournalism instructor at Cabrillo College, was recognized as the Sentinel’s Artist of the Year. Thaler will be honored for his achievement at the Santa Cruz Museum of Art and History on May 27 (click here for details).

Local poet and Cabrillo College instructor David Sullivan was also recognized for work last month. He received the Mary Ballard Poetry Chapbook Prize for his book of poems titled “Take Wing.” You can read more about his work and the award in this article.

Santa Cruz Chocolate Lovers, You’ll Want To Read This

Just in time for Valentines Day–and let’s face it, the rest of the year and those that follow–Santa Cruz Life published a post about about the best places in Santa Cruz to satisfy your sweet tooth with chocolate treats. The post includes information about each place, including recommendations and the most popular items from each store.

The Chocolate Lover’s Guide to Santa Cruz – from A to Mackenzies

Santa Cruz Water Usage Reaches 50 Year Low

According to an article published by KION, Santa Cruz water usage in 2015 was the lowest it’s been since 1965. Thanks to a concentrated effort by residents and businesses to reduce usage, we used roughly 180 million gallons less than we did in 2014.

The article also notes that the recent rain and conservation efforts have been helpful, but we still have a long way to go before we reach “normal” levels of water supply.

High Speed Internet For All: Local Gigabit Update

By 2018, all the homes and businesses in the city will have access to gigabit fiber internet–at least that’s the plan as local ISP Cruzio works with the city to complete the $45 million gigabit project.

Once finished, the project will offer unprecedented internet connectivity that is exponentially faster than what’s currently available. For more information, see this article from the GoodTimes, or visit Cruzio’s webpage on the project.

Star Wars Droid Found On Santa Cruz Beach (Sort Of)

Okay, that is not a BB-8 droid from Star Wars. It’s actually a device that detects sediment events on the ocean floor and records data. In January, two of the STED (sediment transport event detector) instruments, which release flotation devices when triggered, emerged from the ocean floor with new information.

Researchers from the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute have been working to examine the data, which they then plan on using to help map the floor of the Monterey Submarine Canyon. You can read more about the story in this article.

Formula Slug: UCSC Students Building Electric Car

Santa Cruz Tech Beat published an article about Formula Slug, a group of UC Santa Cruz students that have come together around the goal of forming a team to design an electric car and improve campus transportation.

The student-run club now boasts over 100 members and has started a crowdfunding page to help finance the project, which is estimated to cost around $50,000 total.

Formula Slug: Electric cars are the future, and we’re building it

Exploring The Past: Mission Hill Tunnel

Mobile Ranger published a piece about the Mission Hill Tunnel near Chestnut St., including an excerpt from a first-hand account of the maiden voyage made on the rail line in 1874.

One of the more interesting insights from the article is that the tunnel was created so that trains heading to the various wharves would not travel through the Lower Plaza–the area between the clock tower and the meeting of Front St. and Pacific. You can read the full story here.

UC Santa Cruz Celebrates 40 Years Of Printmaking

UC Santa Cruz unveiled an exhibit in January that honors its 40 year history in printmaking. The exhibit, which will be on display at Cowell College’s Eloise Pickard Smith Gallery, will run through March 4 and features work from both the archives and current students.

In this article from KQED Arts, you can learn more about the legacy of printmaking in Santa Cruz, how the program started, and how both factors fed into the development of Santa Cruz as a book arts community.

Pressing On: Selected Works From The Cowell Press

Eloise Pickard Smith Art Gallery at UCSC’s Cowell College

11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday-Sunday

Over 40 Years of Fine Printmaking at UC Santa Cruz Celebrated in Exhibit

Friends To Follow

Sea Dubs Central – A website that exclusively covers the Santa Cruz Warriors, there’s no better place to find information about our local D-league basketball team. You can follow them on Facebook and Twitter or visit the website by clicking here.

Cabrillo Stage – The Cabrillo Stage is a professional musical theater on the campus of Cabrillo College in Aptos. Currently celebrating its 35th year, it’s one of the best places locally to take in a Broadway musical. You can find their website here, and follow them of Facebook and Instagram.

New In Town

Ashby’s Chocolate Cafe – Ashby’s Chocolate Cafe opened in the spot formerly occupied by the Mutari Chocolate House next to the Food Lounge at 1001 Center St. The new location, which you can read about here, is an expansion of the existing Ashby’s Confections retail store in Scotts Valley.

Ashby’s Confections website



In The Breadbox – A gluten-free restaurant and bakery, In The Breadbox opened up at the end of January. Located at 2890 Soquel Ave., they offer a wide variety of gluten-free food options and maintain a focus on using natural and organic ingredients.

In The Breadbox website


Best Of The Month From Santa Cruz Social Media

Motorcycles and lighthouse silhouette.

Perfectly said: great friends, awesome walks, & killer views.

Admiring the surf under the last rays of the day.

Dolphins at Pleasure Point (click photo to play video).

The SS Palo Alto found the waters a bit rough.

Double rainbow!

Rainbows from another angle.

Always a good aerial view from Archer Koch.

Lighthouse Point getting pounded by waves.

An amazing picture with some sensible advice.

Aerial arts really seem to be taking off in Santa Cruz.

Just a friendly reminder that we’ll have Superbowl guests arriving soon.


About Joshua Vincent

Joshua Vincent is a freelance writer who has lived in Santa Cruz for 12 years. Follow his tweets at @VincentChirps.