A surreal year: Photos capture historic events that shaped 2020

About 500 demonstrators leave King Plaza and make their way down Hamilton Avenue in downtown Palo Alto on June 19. Photo by Magali Gauthier.

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A surreal year: Photos capture historic events that shaped 2020

About 500 demonstrators leave King Plaza and make their way down Hamilton Avenue in downtown Palo Alto on June 19. Photo by Magali Gauthier.

Masks. Isolation. Inequality. Climate change. Resiliency. Hope.

The past 12 months have been unlike any other. As Palo Alto Weekly visual journalists captured this historic, life-changing year that included weeks of civil protests, unprecedented fires and a pandemic that transformed everyday life, their images reflect a range of unfamiliar and sometimes surreal — moments that shaped 2020.

When viewed together, these images reveal just how much life has changed over the past 12 months. Photos predating Santa Clara County's first stay-at-home health order in mid-March feel like they were taken during another era. Those moments captured before the mask mandate are otherworldly, especially considering everything we know about the spread of the coronavirus now. And the images of orange skies covered in wildfire smoke above Palo Alto are apocalyptic.

But there are also images that show hundreds of people peacefully protesting in the streets against social injustice and listening to Black community members share how they've experienced racism.

There are images of residents who rose above these challenging times, like Alice's Restaurant co-owner Andy Kerr, who delivered meals to first responders combating the CZU Lightning Complex fires in the Santa Cruz Mountains. And there are images of hope and the possible return to normalcy as some of the first recipients receive the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine.

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Here are those moments that illustrate how our community persevered through this trying year.

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Quan Sims, a Palo Alto Unified Extended School Year high school teacher, explains an assignment at Greene Middle School on July 9; Signs behind Los Robles-Ronald McNair Academy kindergartener Clara remind people to maintain social distance and wear a mask at the Boys and Girls Club in East Palo Alto on Sept. 16. Photos by Magali Gauthier.

Instructional aide Timothy Yung works with a postsecondary student in Palo Alto Unified's Futures program at Cubberley Community Center on Sept. 11. Photo by Magali Gauthier.

Howard Kushlan wears gloves while grocery shopping at Piazza's Fine Foods in Palo Alto on April 1; Andy Kerr, co-owner of Alice's Restaurant, hands California Highway Patrol Officer Adrian Baez a meal while he patrols state Highway 1 outside of Pescadero on Aug. 25. Photos by Magali Gauthier.

A customer walks by empty shelves of bath tissues at a Target store in Mountain View on March 14; Second Harvest of Silicon Valley volunteers load cars with boxes of food at the Avenidas Rose Kleiner Center in Mountain View. on June 16. Photos by Magali Gauthier.

Taverna executive sous chef Kevin Nordloff puts roasted chicken in to-go containers in Palo Alto on March 17, two days after in-person dining was halted. Photo by Magali Gauthier.

A comparison of smoke from wildfires outside Santa Clara County as seen from Page Mill Road and Foothill Expressway in Palo Alto on Aug. 18 and 19. Photo by Magali Gauthier.

Parker Bates cleans a booth after a voter has used it at the Palo Alto Art Center in Palo Alto on Nov. 3; A Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority worker cleans the driver's space on a bus at the Mountain View train station on March 18. Photos by Magali Gauthier.

Nurse Laura Zimmerman receives her first Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine dose at the Veterans Affairs Palo Alto Health Care System in Palo Alto on Dec. 16. Photo by Federica Armstrong.

Maddie Ta, 17, receives a nasal swab test at a COVID-19 testing site at the Palo Alto City Hall lobby on June 16. Photo by Lloyd Lee; Demonstrators march in protest of police brutality against Black people in East Palo Alto on June 12. Photo by Magali Gauthier.

Under an orange and smoky sky, lights wrapped around trees illuminate University Avenue in downtown Palo Alto around 3 p.m. on Sept. 9. Photo by Magali Gauthier.

Protesters kneel in front of City Hall in Palo Alto during a Black Lives Matter protest on June 1. Photo by Magali Gauthier.

For a collection of photographs that capture the impact of the coronavirus pandemic, go to Life Under the Coronavirus.

Read more of our year-in-review coverage:

Year in review: Challenges, milestones from a turbulent 2020

Test your knowledge of Palo Alto happenings in 2020 with our news quiz

Letter from the editor: Navigating through this upside-down year

2020 rewind: A timeline of a year like no other

Tasty against all odds: Our nine most memorable meals of 2020

2020 vision: The year in film

Find comprehensive coverage on the Midpeninsula's response to the new coronavirus by Palo Alto Online, the Mountain View Voice and the Almanac here.

Magali Gauthier
   
Magali Gauthier captures photos and videos for the Palo Alto Weekly, the Mountain View Voice and The Almanac newspapers. She runs the Voice's and the Almanac's Instagram accounts. Read more >>

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A surreal year: Photos capture historic events that shaped 2020

by / Palo Alto Weekly

Uploaded: Fri, Dec 25, 2020, 7:07 am

Masks. Isolation. Inequality. Climate change. Resiliency. Hope.

The past 12 months have been unlike any other. As Palo Alto Weekly visual journalists captured this historic, life-changing year that included weeks of civil protests, unprecedented fires and a pandemic that transformed everyday life, their images reflect a range of unfamiliar and sometimes surreal — moments that shaped 2020.

When viewed together, these images reveal just how much life has changed over the past 12 months. Photos predating Santa Clara County's first stay-at-home health order in mid-March feel like they were taken during another era. Those moments captured before the mask mandate are otherworldly, especially considering everything we know about the spread of the coronavirus now. And the images of orange skies covered in wildfire smoke above Palo Alto are apocalyptic.

But there are also images that show hundreds of people peacefully protesting in the streets against social injustice and listening to Black community members share how they've experienced racism.

There are images of residents who rose above these challenging times, like Alice's Restaurant co-owner Andy Kerr, who delivered meals to first responders combating the CZU Lightning Complex fires in the Santa Cruz Mountains. And there are images of hope and the possible return to normalcy as some of the first recipients receive the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine.

Here are those moments that illustrate how our community persevered through this trying year.

For a collection of photographs that capture the impact of the coronavirus pandemic, go to Life Under the Coronavirus.

Read more of our year-in-review coverage:

Year in review: Challenges, milestones from a turbulent 2020

Test your knowledge of Palo Alto happenings in 2020 with our news quiz

Letter from the editor: Navigating through this upside-down year

2020 rewind: A timeline of a year like no other

Tasty against all odds: Our nine most memorable meals of 2020

2020 vision: The year in film

Find comprehensive coverage on the Midpeninsula's response to the new coronavirus by Palo Alto Online, the Mountain View Voice and the Almanac here.

Comments

rhody
Registered user
Barron Park
on Dec 25, 2020 at 11:24 am
rhody, Barron Park
Registered user
on Dec 25, 2020 at 11:24 am

Thanks for the wonderful pictures in this article.


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