Monthly Archives: May 2012

Profile: Astronaut Greg Chamitoff

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Astronaut Greg Chamitoff grew up in San Jose and went on to travel on both the Discovery and Endeavor shuttle missions, and also spent six months on the International Space Station.

He and his colleagues had plenty of work inside and outside the Space Station but they managed to squeeze in some fun, too. In this video you'll see two astronauts play ball - one of them is floating right side up while the other is upside down. Greg plays the guitar while rotating through the air and you'll see how the astronauts answer the door when the shuttle docks.

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This is Us: Surfing Safari

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For this episode we went aboard the O’Neill Sea Odyssey in the Santa Cruz Harbor. It’s a 65-foot catamaran on which kids get to take a field trip they’ll never forget - a science cruise on Monterey Bay. You’ll learn more about this educational adventure during the show.

We also met the man behind the sea odyssey program, Jack O’Neill, a surfing icon and innovator who is also credited with the invention of the wetsuit.

And we visited the Stradivarius of surf board shapers, Doug Haut. Doug has been shaping boards for 50 years. He's another Santa Cruz legend.

Finally we went to class – surf class that is – with veteran big wave surfer Richard Schmidt. A former Santa Cruz lifeguard, Schmidt made his reputation riding huge waves on Hawaii’s North Shore and now he’s teaching just about anyone how to surf.

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This is Us: Foodie’s Delight

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This week we profile local chefs Reilly Meehan and Charles Phan.

Chef Phan is a winner of the coveted James Beard Award for Best Chef: California and owner of San Franciscos’s The Slanted Door, which has been touted as America’s best Vietnamese restaurant. This is the only place we know where you can taste Lychee cotton candy.

Santa Cruzan, Reilly Meehan, is the current “International Best Young Chef.” Meehan is the first American and the youngest chef ever to win the competition for that honor.

We shot the show, surrounded by chocolate, on location at Marini's Candies in Downtown Santa Cruz. Marini's is nearly 100 years old and the originator of chocolate covered bacon craze. The Marinis have dipped a lot of things in chocolate, from apricots to grasshoppers, but bacon is their biggest hit. They show us how they make it in the clip above.

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This is Us: Working for Change

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In this episode TiU visited the Emma Prusch Farm Park not far from downtown San Jose. This was an actual working farm from 1870 until 1969. The Farm is now run by The City of San Jose and the Department of Parks and Recreation. Kids come here from all over the valley to learn about life on a farm.

Speaking of farms, we have the story of a local man who did grow up on farms here in the valley, playwright and film director Luis Valdez. He's the man behind the films Zoot Suit and La Bamba. He spent part of his childhood, not far from here, as a migrant farm worker.

You’ll also meet activist and attorney Carol Ruth Silver. During the early days of the Civil Rights Movement, she was one of the original Freedom Riders who boarded buses and traveled south to Mississippi in an attempt to end racial discrimination.

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