PALO ALTO STORY PROJECT | News | Palo Alto Online |



Brief tales about experiences old and new, as told by local residents

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The Palo Alto Story Project -- an initiative aimed at gathering community members' stories, reminiscences and reflections about the city -- launched Aug. 22 and 23 at the Palo Alto Festival of the Arts.

More than 50 brief tales from local residents (plus two dogs) were videotaped. Click on a link below to view the video.

The initiative is a project of the Palo Alto Weekly and Palo Alto Online.

More Story Project videos will be posted at regular intervals on Palo Alto Online.

To contribute your own Palo Alto story at a future taping session, contact Karla Kane, editorial assistant, at 650-326-8210 or


Palo Alto Story Project: Paul Patterson

Patterson's love of disc-jockeying was sparked by a tour of Stanford's radio station, KZSU.

Palo Alto Story Project: Drew Wanderman

Wanderman's got a log cabin in her back yard, which prompted a surprise visit one day.

Palo Alto Story Project: Becky Sanders

Sanders recalls living in Escondido Village and how she and her children became good friends with people from across the globe.

Palo Alto Story Project: Richard Brooks

Brooks, a fiddle player, felt instantly at home when he moved to Palo Alto and visited Gryphon Stringed Instruments.

Palo Alto Story Project: Diana

She enjoyed one of favorite days with her father in Palo Alto, when they went to a Stanford game and ate at Swenson's.

Palo Alto Story Project: John Chave

Chave averted a fire from spreading in downtown Palo Alto by calling 911.

Palo Alto Story Project: Raza Riaz

Riaz, a visitor from Pakistan, expresses her appreciation for the city that became her home for two months.


Palo Alto Story Project: Susan Moskowitz

Moskowitz recalls her daughter's joy at walking in her first May Fete Parade.

Palo Alto Story Project: Roy Blitzer

Blitzer shares his most meaningful memory from his time serving on the Human Relations Commission.

Palo Alto Story Project: Susan Stienstra Vance

Stienstra Vance met her best friend when they were both children growing up in Palo Alto.


Palo Alto Story Project: Suzie Provo

Palo Alto resident Provo recalls the flood of 1998.

Palo Alto Story Project: Phil Kurokawa

Kurokawa is a former Palo Alto Police Department reserve officer.

Palo Alto Story Project: Elissa Brown & Becky Bob-Waksberg

Brown and Bob-Waksberg are two friends who grew up playing basketball together at the YMCA.

Palo Alto Story Project: Gigi Lenhart

Gigi Lenhart, a Palo Alto native, reminisces about when kids could walk across Highway 101.


Palo Alto Story Project: Catherine Carlton

Carlton's love of watching old films gave her a way to make friends in Palo Alto.

Palo Alto Story Project: Yoo Hsiu Yeh

Yeh has a special fondness for Mills the Florist.

Palo Alto Story Project: Rachel Palmer

Rachel Palmer remembers getting her driver's license, and the fun she had with friends driving around Stanford University.

Palo Alto Story Project: Jeanie Forte

Jeanie Forte recalls when it snowed in Palo Alto.

Palo Alto Story Project: Will Rogers

Will Rogers and his housemates have pledged only to eat food grown within 100 miles of Palo Alto.


Palo Alto Story Project: Charlie Crabtree

Crabtree recalls a fond memory of the Aquarius Theater in downtown Palo Alto.

Palo Alto Story Project: Matt Harnack

Harnack talks about the surprising advice he received when his hero, documentary film director Werner Herzog, came to Stanford.

Palo Alto Story Project: Enid Pearson

Pearson tells how her passion for preserving parks in Palo Alto got started.

Palo Alto Story Project: Larry Chiang

Chiang reflects on his blog and the lessons he's learned in Palo Alto.

Palo Alto Story Project: Carol Gilbert

Gilbert reminisces about going with her father to Wilson's Restaurant and Candies in downtown Palo Alto.


Palo Alto Story Project: Julian Gomez

Gomez tells of the time a plane crashed into his car on Embarcadero Road.

Palo Alto Story Project: Geri McGilvray

McGilvray explains why a mural of Venice is painted on her garage door in the Midtown neighborhood.

Palo Alto Story Project: Ron Kane

Kane's love of vintage cars was stoked by a Palo Alto auto shop.

Palo Alto Story Project: Jill Rakestraw

Rakestraw recalls the time it only cost 10 cents for kids to ride the bus to University Avenue in Palo Alto.

Palo Alto Story Project: Kids' Corner.

Children reflect on why they love Palo Alto.

— Palo Alto Online staff

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Like this comment
Posted by Helen
a resident of Crescent Park
on Sep 25, 2009 at 11:38 am

Great idea!

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The 34th Annual Palo Alto Weekly Short Story Contest is now accepting entries for Adult, Young Adult and Teen categories. Send us your short story (2,500 words or less) and entry form by April 10, 2020. First, Second and Third Place prizes awarded in each category. Sponsored by Kepler's Books, Linden Tree Books and Bell's Books.

Contest Details