Tuesday, December 1, 2015     Volume: 30, Issue: 18

Weekly Poll
What are you thankful for?

El Niño—finally I’ll be able to dance in the rain.
A few days off from work!
That I don’t live in a war zone.

Vote! | Poll Results

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Special Features
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Off the rails: Debate over oil trains raises the profile of railroad safety

Cover Story

Off the rails: Debate over oil trains raises the profile of railroad safety


Miles and miles of railroad track snake up the California coast though big cities and small towns. For coastal residents in SLO and Santa Barbara counties, those rails and the trains that run on them were a seemingly banal part of everyday existence.  Walking in cities like Santa Barbara, Guadalupe, Pismo Beach, and San Luis Obispo, residents see the tracks and hear the ... [ Read More ]

Top 5 Articles



Cal Poly to announce changes in diversity policies


Following two weeks of protests and meetings with school administration, Cal Poly students advocating for new policies to improve diversity and inclusion on campus will hear a...

SLO County jury convicts Richard Scott Brooks of human trafficking, pimping


A San Fransisco man could face life in prison after a SLO County jury convicted him on numerous felony counts connected to the trafficking, pimping, and sexual assault of a 17...

New report shows challenges for SLO County women


In San Luis Obispo County, a significant number of teenage girls experience chronic sadness; the rate of forcible rape perpetrated against females is almost twice as high as t...

Dawn Ortiz-Legg joins Jordan Cunningham in race for state Assembly


For more than nine months, Jordan Cunningham was the lone candidate in the 2016 race for the open seat to represent California’s 35th District in the state Assembly. That s...

Cal Poly research brings in big grant money and patents


Millions of dollars in external funds poured into Cal Poly last year, and it’s all thanks to professors and other employees, according to the university. That money include...

SLO County ranked No. 6 in the U.S. for female owned businesses


A hand-written chalkboard sign behind the front door reads, “We believe that women, like the clothes they wear, are more interesting with a little history behind them.” Ch...

Oil, water, and rocks: Freeport McMoRan wins one battle in Price Canyon drilling war


Oil and water mix well enough in the Arroyo Grande Oil Field that Freeport McMoRan continues to drill ever closer to the next phase in tapping its mineral resources along Pric...

Cougars & Mustangs


NO MENTIONING CHRISTMAS UNTIL AFTER THANKSGIVING! the voices cry, with various disgruntled noises and waggled fingers. Look, pal, it IS Thanksgiving, or potentially after. Shu...


Beware of unintended consequences


The landowner-developer (a Carmel, Calif., resident) and promoters of the proposed massive 91-bed Templeton Acute Care Mental Hospital have conducted a misleading publicity ca...


No welcome mat for them

By Judith Bernstein - Arroyo Grande

Half a million and more, crammed Into leaky boats, airless trucks, Stumbling with heavy packs on their backs Or with the burden of pregnancy, Not knowing if their baby wil...

I am confident in Phillips 66 and Union Pacific

By David Reutzel - Arroyo Grande

The Central Coast has for many generations benefited from the Phillips 66 Santa Maria Refinery and the 200 jobs it provides. As a resident of Arroyo Grande, my family and I li...

Thanksgiving, the lost holiday

By Helen Saulsbury - Arroyo Grande

It is a shame in this country, when we have so much to be grateful for, that Halloween overshadows Thanksgiving completely. Then Christmas jumps in early neck-and-neck with Ha...

Denial of refugees is all about the money

By Mark Henry - San Luis Obispo

Hallelujah! Our chronic do-nothing United States Congress, a crude combination of two basically inert elements that have agreed on little the last decade or two except voting ...

What kind of a movie review was that?

By Hershel Parker - Morro Bay

Please get the Shredder to fire Editor Camillia Lanham and Arts Editor Ryah Cooley because only the Shredder can do it with sufficient relish. The movie owners in the county, ...


Give thanks!

Thanksgiving isn’t just a time to watch football, argue with relatives, and with gluttonous abandon shove food in our faces. It’s also a time to celebrate the genocide of ...

Street Talk

What’s your favorite Thanksgiving side?

Alex McMillen Beth Hatchard Jason Moore Michael Hamilton

Strokes and Plugs

Baywood Climate Fest on Nov. 29 offers a day of activities and education aimed at increasing awareness of global warming


Feel like taking part in SLO County’s biggest ever flotilla? On Nov. 29, rent a paddleboard and join the Baywood Climate Fest, an all-day event hosted by Baywood locals to ...


These DIY gifts are succulent: Los Osos studio offers workshops on succulent wreaths and more


I have approximately 128 DIY related pins on my crafty board on Pinterest. I have attempted zero of them.   I think about making the wine bottle glasses or the farmers’ ...

The impact of absence: Jim apRoberts gathers global following with paintings focused on the politically abducted


There’s a certain kind of closure that comes with losing someone to death, with knowing that that they’re gone and never coming back. But what if someone you love just van...

Bringing it back: Roat trip to Santa Ynez for Salt-N-Pepa is like reliving childhood, but with cocktails and good food


Missy Elliot, Vanilla Ice, 2Pac, and Warren G serenade us as we barrel through the darkness toward a fancy cocktail paired with even fancier food.  My friend and I dance dow...

SLO's ancient volcanic peaks are the photogenic subject of new book


Everyone’s heard of the seven sisters, a chain of hills dividing the Chorro and Los Osos Valley that provide some of the most iconic views in San Luis Obispo County. Well, ...

The Ten Tenors come to PAC-SLO Dec. 1

Start off the holiday season right with some Christmas tunes sung to you by a pack of charming Australian blokes. If you thought one tenor was good, then the upcoming show by...


Corb Lund & The Hurtin' Albertans bring their Canadian country sounds to SLO Brew on Dec. 2


Corb Lund knows how to tell a story. On “Bible on the Dash,” the Canadian honky tonker explains how the best protection from the police is, well, what the title says: “A...


'Spotlight' chronicles Boston Globe reporters’ long journey to reveal the Catholic Church’s pedophilic priest scandal

Co-writer and director Tom McCarthy (The Station Agent, The Visitor, Win Win) tells the true-life story of how Boston Globe reporters uncovered the Catholic Church cover-up of...


One love: Mama Ganache Artisan Chocolates are locally made for the good of the globe


The story of Tom Neuhaus’ journey from young church organist to scientist to beloved Cal Poly professor to eco-conscious chocolatier is scrumptiously long-winded.  I met w...

Hayley's Pick

Sweetie Cup's chai boba tea and BarrelHouse Brewing Co.'s Rye IPA

A funny thing happens when I drink boba tea too enthusiastically. Basically, the little balls of tapioca end up being swallowed whole instead of chewed, savored, and fully enj...

Hot Dates

Everybody must get sandstoned

Put your mind at ease with the idyllic imagery of the Navajo Nation in Arizona, via an exhibit of photography by Robert Kennedy at the San Luis Obispo Museum of Art titled Sym...

Weather retort

With the goal of inspiring action in response to climate change, the Central Coast Global Climate March and Float will be held Nov. 29 from 11 a.m. to sunset at the Back Bay I...

Go for the glory

Taking their inspiration from SLO County’s Nine Sisters or Morros, Gallery at Marina Square will present a multi-artist, mixed-media exhibit titled Glory of the Morros, on d...