by Clair Handy, Mary Pope-Handy | Dec 8, 2022 | Los Gatos History, Parks
The Ramohs Pacific Railroad once ran through the foothills off of Blossom Hill Road in East Los Gatos. Today there are hiking trails in the Heintz Open Space Preserve (behind the Heritage Grove neighborhood put up by SummerHill Homes in about the year 2000).
Recommended reading on the Ramohs Pacific Railroad
If you enjoy Los Gatos history, you will love this in depth look at the Ramohs Pacific Railroad by Derek Whaley on his Santa Cruz Trains website:
RM Heintz Miniature Railroad on the Santa Cruz Trains site.
Related reading on Los Gatos history
Cheeky Los Gatos article from 1892 (on this website)
Los Gatos and the 1918-1920 Influenza Pandemic: Part 1 (this site)
Hooker Gulch in the Los Gatos Mountains (this site)
Ming Quong: a Los Gatos Monument (this site)
The Los Gatos History Project (NUMU)
by Clair Handy | Nov 30, 2022 | Downtown Los Gatos, Events
Two of the best attended and most celebrated holiday events in town are the Los Gatos tree lighting and the parade, both of which usually happen the first weekend in December.
Annual Los Gatos Tree Lighting
This year, the Los Gatos Annual Tree Lighting Ceremony will take place Friday, December 2nd, at the Town Plaza Park (located at Main & Santa Cruz). Per the town’s website:
The event will begin at 5:00 p.m. with the lighting at 6:00 p.m. sharp. Free photos with Santa in the park will immediately follow the lighting until 7:00 p.m.
Normally there are snacks for sale and live music plays from local schools or from professional musicians. There aren’t many details on the town’s webpage, but no matter what, it is sure to be a very joyful event.
The annual holiday parade will take place the next morning. Details below.
The 66th Annual Los Gatos Children’s Christmas/Holidays Parade!
On the morning following the tree lighting, return to the downtown area to watch the annual Los Gatos Children’s Christmas/Holiday Parade travel down E Main Street and N Santa Cruz Avenue. It begins at 11am rain or shine December 3rd. Parking and seats go quickly so plan to arrive early! Or skip the traffic and road closures and arrive by bike, with a free bicycle valet service provided from 8:45am – 2pm at Municipal Lot #1 behind Hercules Draft House and Cantina (formerly Flights or Hult’s Restaurant).
Sponsors include LGS Recreation, Los Gatos Lions club, and the Los Gatos High School.
Learn more at the LGS Recreation official parade page or on the Los Gatos Chamber’s website.
Los Gatos holiday parade
Looking for more to do in town? Check out the festive Los Gatos Carriage Rides, too.
by Mary Pope-Handy, Clair Handy | Nov 20, 2022 | Events, LG Lifestyle, Los Gatos Events, Parks, Visiting Los Gatos
The 24th annual Fantasy of Lights show at Vasona Lake County Park begins soon! Occasionally people call me to ask about it – please note that I do not run the event – I am only posting information about it. Full info can be found on the county’s park website, linked below.
24th annual Fantasy of Lights:
Get your tickets now, they sell out fast! Entry with prepaid tickets only!
What: The Fantasy of Lights
Walk-thru Weekend Dec 3 & 4, 2022 from 4 to 9 pm
Drive-thru Nights Dec 6 – 30, 2022 with 30 minute slots from 6pm to 9:30pm
Open rain or shine. As always, the Fantasy of Lights is closed on Christmas Day (Dec 25).
Where: Vasona Lake County Park, 333 Blossom Hill Road (near University Avenue) Los Gatos, CA
How much: Tickets must be purchased in advance available online through EventBrite.
Walk through cost is $10 for ages 13 and up, $5 for ages 4 – 12, and free for 3 and under (tickets still required for free entry!)
Drive through cost is $20 per regular vehicle (up to 12 passenger capacity), $50 per oversized vehicle (13+ passenger capacity).
Please visit the Santa Clara County Parks page for the Fantasy of Lights to get more information and updates on this event.
Please check the county’s page for this event.
More questions? PLEASE do NOT call me about this event. Please contact the SCC Parks Dept and check out their website for the Fantasy of Lights! The Vasona phone number is (408) 355-2201.
Please visit Live in Los Gatos for year round events, neighborhood information, photos around the town, interesting real estate market data, haunted places and the occasional historical tidbit.
Los Gatos is a wonderful place to visit during the holidays, but it’s also a great place to live year round! If you are interested in buying a home in Los Gatos (or selling one), please contact me, Mary Pope-Handy (contact information in the sidebar). I’m both a Realtor based in the Town of Los Gatos and a resident myself, working full time in helping nice folks to buy and sell homes here and throughout the west valley and greater Silicon Valley communities.
If you aren’t familiar with the area, here are a few things to know!
Buy a home in Los Gatos (info on neighborhoods, school districts, homes for sale to browse online, links to important local sites & info)
Relocating and buying a house in Los Gatos
Los Gatos real estate on Facebook
Monthly Los Gatos real estate market update
Los Gatos real estate market statistics & trends for houses
Los Gatos realty trends and stats for condos & townhouses
by Mary Pope-Handy, Clair Handy | Nov 18, 2022 | Los Gatos Neighborhoods, East Los Gatos
A handful of streets on and off Blossom Hill Road make up the Winterbrook Rochin area. Residents there enjoy the highly acclaimed Los Gatos Union School District and a close proximity to Blossom Hill Elementary School, Blossom Hill Park, and much more. Many properties can boast a view of the coastal range, too.
Not every neighborhood in Los Gatos has a name, and I could not locate one for residential part of town, either, so I’m calling it the Winterbrook Rochin area as those streets bookend these homes.
Where is the Winterbrook Rochin area?
This pocket sits just a little east of Blossom Manor in east Los Gatos, separated from the Manor by Ross Creek, and it hits the eastern boundary of the Los Gatos Union School district for this part of town (a snippet of Los Gatos schools can be found in Almaden Valley off of Camden and Coleman in the farther side of the Campagna subdivision – that is the very far east boundary!).
The streets include Winterbrook Road, Stephanie Lane, Linda Avenue (south of Ross Creek), Costances Court, Rochin Terrace, Rochin Court, and part of Blossom Hill Road.
What are homes and streets like in the Winterbrook Rochin area?
This area has a lot of variety in home age, size, style and more. I pulled the data up in Realist, which provides MLS members info from the county records, for the following statistics.
- There are 76 single family homes in this neighborhood.
- 49 of them are single story, the rest are 2 story homes.
- The most modest homes have 2 bedrooms and 1 or 2 bathrooms. The largest has 8 bedrooms and 8 bathrooms.
- The houses have living space square footage from 850 SF to 6828 SF. Most houses have between 2,000 and 3,000 SF. (Three homes are under 1,000 SF. The three largest have 3,951, 4,646, and 6828 SF.)
- Lot sizes range from 7823 to 65,213 SF
- The oldest house was built in 1925, and the newest in 2020. The two oldest homes are on Linda. The three youngest are tear downs that were built new.
- The newest subdivision is on Constaces Court. There are 7 houses there, 6 built in 2014 and 1 constructed in 2018.
by Mary Pope-Handy, Clair Handy | Nov 12, 2022 | Events, Los Gatos Events
The annual Thanksgiving Interfaith Service is a longstanding holiday tradition here in Los Gatos, and this year it’s both in person and virtual.
Thanksgiving Interfaith Service in Los Gatos: key info
Date: Thursday, November 17, 2022
Time: 7 – 8 p.m.
In Person Location: Los Gatos United Methodist Church
111 Church Street – Los Gatos, Ca. 95030
Live stream link for the service.
Attendance is free.
A charity or worthy cause is always supported at these events. In the past they’ve included food and clothing drives as well as cash. This year’s recipient is Recovery Café – more on that below.
This lovely event is organized by the Los Gatos Interfaith Clergy Association. All are welcome!
The worthy cause being supported this year is Recovery Café. There will be a message shared about the vital work that they do during the service. Donations can be given in person or online. Here’s the link to donate to them. It’s not too early to chip in!
“A healing community for those traumatized by addiction, homelessness, and mental health challenges.”
Learn more about Recovery Café in San Jose here.
Participating Congregations Include
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
Congregation Shir Hadash
Jewish Silicon Valley
West Valley Muslim Association
The Presbyterian Church of Los Gatos
St. Luke’s Episcopal Church
St. Mary of the Immaculate Conception (Catholic)
Unitarian Universalist Fellowship
Skyland Community Church UCC (United Church of Christ)
The Terraces of Los Gatos
Los Gatos United Methodist Church (Hosting)
The participating communities change a little from year to year. In the past, this also included Faith Lutheran Church (ELCA), The Baha’i Faith of Los Gatos, chaplains from Good Samaritan Hospital, and Stanford Health Care.
Many thanks to all of you: those on the committee, the volunteers at the houses of worship who make this possible each year, everyone who donates, and everyone who prays with a grateful heart this season and always.
I wish each and every one of you a very Happy Thanksgiving and a wonderful holiday season!
See other Los Gatos events (or nearby) written about on this site