St. John the Baptist Autumn Festival upcoming

Everyone is welcome to a weekend of fun at St. John the Baptist's Autumn Festival Sept. 25-27. Hours are 5-10 p.m. on Sept. 25, 11 a.m.-10 p.m. on Sept. 26, and 11 a.m.-6 p.m. on Sept. 27. There will be carnival rides, games, international foods, beer, wine, live entertainment, bingo, silent auction, a rummage sale, raffles and more. The Extravaganza Raffle has a $10,000 first prize. A live band will rock the floor the night of Sept. 26. St. John the Baptist Church is located at 279 S. Main St. For more information, visit www.sjparish.org/festival.

Author visits Milpitas Library

Author C.W. Gortner will join the Milpitas Public Library's monthly book group at 7:30 p.m. Sept. 30 to discuss his novel "The Last Queen," the story of Juana, daughter of Queen Isabel and King Ferdinand of Spain. Gortner provides a fascinating portrayal of the politics and history of the time in this book which Publishers Weekly called "an enthralling story, brilliantly told." This program is free and open to all, and is made possible by the generous support of the Friends of the Milpitas Library. The library is at 160 N. Main St. For more information, call the reference desk at 262-1171, extension 3616.

Benefit concert

A singing competition and concert to benefit Milpitas Young Life will be held Saturday, Sept. 18 at Christ Community Church of Milpitas, 1000 S. Park Victoria Drive beginning at 5 p.m.


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with a hot dog dinner. The event will feature performances by singing sensations Manuel Romero and Brieanne Jansen along with musician and recording artist Eddie M. The singing competition and concert will be at 6:30 p.m. Tickets are $10 for admission including hot dog dinner, or $8 for admission. Dinner tickets at the door are $3. Tickets may be purchased before the event by calling 286-6374, by e-mailing rkjacksonyl@sbcglobal.net, or by visiting www.siliconvalleyeast.younglife.org.

Free tax preparation

Low-income, disabled, limited English speaking and elderly taxpayers who have not filed their 2008 income tax returns can get free tax preparation and electronic filing help at the India Community Center.

Tax preparation services are available on Wednesdays, through Oct. 14, 6-9 p.m. at the India Community Center, 525 Los Coches St. Sign-up lists will be available at the front desk at 5 p.m. on those days. Taxpayers (and spouses) need to bring their Social Security cards, picture identification, W-2s and 1099 forms and the Social Security cards of their dependents. Taxpayers must be physically present for their returns to be completed. For more information, call 934-1130.

Mortgage challenges?

An informational seminar covering the options available for homeowners having trouble making mortgage payments from 7-8:30 p.m. on Sept. 23. The seminar will cover loan modifications, short sales and foreclosures. A resource list of public agencies that offer free assistance will be available for attendees. Seating is limited. The gathering will be at the Community Room at the Milpitas Police Department, 1275 N. Milpitas Blvd. For further information, contact Joseph Weinstein (202-6080) or Cory Wong (688-1306).

Car wash at Caffino

Get a car wash, a discounted drink at Caffino and help the Fancy Dancers of Milpitas non-profit youth dance team raise money for their next dance performance 8 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 19.

When purchasing your drink at Caffino, mention the Milpitas Post and the Fancy Dancers and you'll receive a 50-cent discount on your drink and Caffino will contribute 50 cents to the dance team. While you are enjoying your drink you can have your car washed. Caffino is located at 315 W. Calaveras Blvd. in Milpitas.

"An Evening with Mary"

St. Elizabeth Catholic Church in Milpitas is celebrating its third annual celebration of "An Evening with Mary" at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 7 at 750 Sequoia Drive, Milpitas. Gathering time is at 6:30 p.m.

The community will gather in a celebration to honor the blessed Virgin Mary under her different titles and roles. This year being the year of the priest we will call the night "Mary Mother of all Priests." Different statues/pictures of Mary, fully decorated in their carozzas will join the candle-light procession, followed by Mass, prayer for all priests, seminarians, and for the vocation will be prayed, and songs honoring the Blessed Mother.

For more information, call Cory Mollat at 834-2196.

Argentine tango at library

A program focusing on the historical roots of the Argentine tango, both dance and music, and its influence on art and fashion will be held Saturday, Sept. 19 at 3 p.m. Jurek Mazur, of the Academia de Tango Argentino, uses his background in physics and engineering to create a unique teaching method for learning Argentine dance. A dance demonstration will follow the lecture.

The program is free and open to all and is made possible by the support of the Friends of the Milpitas Library. The Milpitas Public Library is located at 160 N. Main St. For more information, call the reference desk at 262-1171, extension 3616.

Samuel Ayer reunion

Be ready to renew old friendships with classmates and also make new friends during the fifth annual Samuel Ayer High School Picnic on Saturday, Sept. 19 from 12-6 p.m. at Cardoza Park, 1356 Kennedy Drive.

This reunion is for all classes from 1959 to 1980. Congratulations to the class of 1961 for the best alumni attendance turnout last year. Which class will take honors in 2009?

Organizers ask that you bring your own food and drinks. Music will be provided by Gabe and Helen Gucho (class of 1960).

For more information, contact Larry Clark at clarklar@sbcglobal.net.

From lawns to meadows

Want to conserve water and convert your lawn into a more sustainable native meadow or simply see examples of meadows that have replaced traditional lawns and discuss what plant combinations work for different situation? Native landscape designer Alexandra Von Feldt will hold a talk on Thursday, Oct. 1, 7-8:30 p.m., about her experience as a native gardener for the past six years. The free event will be held at Milpitas Public Library, 160 N. Main St. For more information, call 262-1171, extension 3616, or visit www.cnps-scv.org.

Basketball open gym

The Milpitas Sports Center offers open gym for basketball Monday to Friday (mornings and afternoons) and Monday evenings until 9 p.m. It is open to ages 18 and older. There is a $5 drop-in fee for gym entrance. No child-care services are available.

For more information, call 586-3225 or visit 1325 E. Calaveras Blvd.

Boating safety

U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary will offer a boating safety class starting tonight from 6:30-9 p.m., one night a week for nine weeks at the First Congregational Church, 1980 Hamilton Ave., San Jose. For more information, call 723-0223 or 377-6118.

Drop-in volleyball

Drop-in volleyball is being hosted Wednesday evenings (6-10 p.m.) at the Milpitas Sports Center. Three courts are available (beginning, intermediate and advanced play). The program is open to participants 16 years and older (participants 16 to 17 years old must be accompanied by a parent/guardian). Cost is $4 per participant. For more information regarding this activity or fitness programs, call Milpitas Sports Center at 586-3225 or visit 1325 E. Calaveras Blvd. (behind Milpitas Adult Education).

Library book sale

The Friends of the Milpitas Library fall book sale is scheduled Sept. 25- 27. The sale begins with member preview night Friday, Sept. 25 from 7-9 p.m. with membership available at the door. The sale opens to the public on Saturday, Sept. 26, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. and Sunday, Sept. 27, 12-4 p.m. Books will be sold at $1.50 per inch, audio books and DVD/CVDs at $5 each, CDs at $1.50 each, and there will be special priced items marked. Sept. 27 is also the sale's bargain day, when a bag full of books is $5 and media items are marked down 50 percent.

Those who wish to volunteer can call the library at 262-1171, extension 3616, or sign up to volunteer at the information desk on the second floor.

Fitness Camp

Why not kick-start your mornings by joining the Fitness Camp at the Milpitas Sports Center? This fun class builds camaraderie and tones with exciting workouts and drills. The class also improves agility, core strength, coordination and cardiovascular fitness. The Fitness Camp is held on Tuesday and Thursday mornings from 6:30-7:30 a.m. and Tuesday evenings, 5:30-6:30 p.m.

For more information, call Milpitas Sports Center at 586-3225 or visit 1325 E. Calaveras Blvd. (behind Milpitas Adult Education).

Lunch-time fitness

Fitness classes are offered at the Milpitas Sports Center Monday through Friday during the lunch hour, 12-1 p.m.

Various classes such as body architect, total body sculpting, and pilates are offered on a weekly basis. Reasonable drop-in rates, visit passes and memberships are available. For more information, call Milpitas Sports Center at 586-3225.

Dance-inspired Zumba

The Milpitas Sports Center is offering a new Zumba class on Wednesdays, 5:30-6:30 p.m. Zumba is inspired by traditional salsa, samba and merengue music and dance steps, incorporating easy-to-follow dance moves at a high cardio base for body changing benefits. For more information regarding this class and other wellness programs, call Milpitas Sports Center at 586-3225 or visit 1325 E. Calaveras Blvd.

School supplies dropoff

Grammy-winning singer-songwriter Ciara is encouraging teens to make a difference this summer by collecting school supplies and dropping them off, before Sept. 19, at their nearest Staples store, which is located at 627 E. Calaveras Blvd.

Staples is donating more than $125,000 worth of school supplies to the program.

In addition to collecting supplies, customers can also contribute by donating $1 at any Staples store; 100 percent of the proceeds will benefit local teens in need. All school supplies and donations will be given to the Boys and Girls Clubs of Silicon Valley, an educational and nonprofit organization that serves disadvantaged youth.

Toastmasters gather

Milpitas Toastmasters Club meets every Monday evening from 7-9 p.m. at the North Valley Christian Fellowship building located at 919 Hanson Court.

Milpitas Toastmasters Club is not affiliated with North Valley Christian Fellowship. Guests are always welcomed.

For more information, including a map, visit www.milpitastoastmasters.com.

Better Breathers Club

On the last Monday of the month, Breathe California hosts the Better Breathers Club, a support group for people suffering from lung disease and their family members. Guest speakers from various health disciplines share their expertise with the group, in an effort to help participants breathe easier and lead a higher quality of life. The group also offers an open forum to discuss common concerns related to their lung disease. For more information on the Better Breathers Club, call 998-5865 or visit www.lungsrus.org.

Vision Literacy orientation

Vision Literacy, a service of the Santa Clara County Library, provides adults in Santa Clara County with free literacy services. A nationally recognized non-profit organization, Vision Literacy trains volunteer tutors to help adults with reading, writing, and basic math skills.

Vision Literacy is offering volunteer orientations that provide a brief overview of core projects and the populations served. This informational session enables potential volunteers to better understand Vision Literacy's services, discuss expectations of tutor training, and allow for a direct question and answer period. After completing orientation, interested volunteers are welcome to register for tutor training or explore other volunteer opportunities.

To register for orientation call 262-1349 or e-mail info@visionliteracy.org.

Food Addicts meetings

Food Addicts in Recovery Anonymous meets every Wednesday from 9:30-11 a.m. at the Pioneer Mobile Home Park Recreation Room, 60 Wilson Way. Food Addicts in Recovery Anonymous is a 12-step program for overeating, bulimia and anorexia. There are no dues, fees or weigh-ins. For more information, call Suzanne at (510) 793-2666.

Hospice volunteers

Pathways Hospice is looking for volunteers to provide compassionate care and companionship to people facing the end of life. Volunteer opportunities are also available for office assistant, community education, special projects, and bereavement services. Pathways Hospice is located at 585 N. Mary Ave. in Sunnyvale. For more information or to enroll, call Joanne Griffin at (510) 613-2017, e-mail jgriffin@pathwayshealth.org or visit www.pathwayshealth.org.

Young ladies' life skills

International Order of Job's Daughters Silicon Valley teaches young ladies, 10 to 20 years old, important life skills such as leadership, organization, teamwork and self-reliance. Girls also learn a sense of community by participating in philanthropic projects. Meetings are held on the first Monday at 7 p.m. and the third Saturday at 11 a.m. of each month at Mountain View Masonic Lodge, 890 Church St., Mountain View. For more information, call 781-0946 or e-mail yvettespencerbg103@yahoo.com.

Child advocates needed

Child Advocates of Silicon Valley is seeking caring adults, 21 and older, to become friends, mentors and advocates for children in the foster care system that have been abused, neglected or abandoned. Volunteers spend weekly one-on-one time with a child and speak up for their best interests in court. There are currently hundreds of children on the waiting list for an advocate. To learn how you can help, or for more information, contact Samantha at 573-5665 or samantha@cadvocates.org.