Coronavirus threat to public health causes Morgan Hill’s food fest to be cancelled in late September

 A food vendor prepares teriyaki for hungry customers at the food court on Third Street in a past Taste of Morgan Hill.

By Robert Airoldi

Robert Airoldi

The Annual Taste of Morgan Hill is another victim of the global pandemic as organizers announced earlier this month that the two-day event is cancelled. The event, scheduled for the last weekend of September, annually brings in about 50,000 people.

“It is with a heavy heart that I announce the cancellation of the 2020 Taste of Morgan Hill Festival and Car Show,” event organizer Sunday Minnich said on the Morgan Hill Chamber of Commerce’s Facebook page. “We are deeply saddened this popular event will not take place this year. We hope to see you in 2021 for the return of the Taste of Morgan Hill Festival and Car Show!”

While many school districts are grappling with the decision of whether to welcome students back on campuses, Mount Madonna School is building seven outdoor classrooms as well as an amphitheater. Like indoor classrooms, the outdoor classrooms will be furnished and equipped with shade structures, whiteboards, Wi-Fi technology and data projectors.

“Immersing students in nature and outdoor learning develops the whole student,” said Head of School Ann Goewert. “Outdoor learning fuels the mind and ignites all of the senses.”

The space under the big oak tree provides ample room for students to socially distance, with flexible seating options. Using some recently felled redwoods, they milled stumps for seating. Extra desks and chairs will be ordered for students who prefer to sit at a desk and chair. Student-supplied, personal camp-style chairs could also be an option for students who prefer to bring their own seating.

The existing upper campus outdoor classroom has been a favorite of students for years. In this learning environment, many students choose to sit on one of the tree limbs as teachers lead class discussion or supervise quiet reflection. Others choose to sit on the wooden benches or prop themselves against a nearby tree trunk.

The weatherproof outdoor classrooms will be equipped with Wi-Fi, waterproof covering, traditional desks and chairs, whiteboards, and data projectors. For inclement weather, they have the ability to provide shelter by adding walls and space heaters.

School starts Sept. 8. Best of luck, students!

Roger Knopf

A heartfelt thank you to Kathy Sullivan who stepped down as president of the Morgan Hill Historical Society Board of Directors after six years in that position. Effective July 1, longtime member and volunteer Roger Knopf was elected to take over. Kathy remains active on the board as chair of the marketing committee and others.

Roger and his family have lived in Morgan Hill since 1964. His wife Janie is also a Historical Society member, volunteer and former board member. The Knopf’s were involved with prune farming until 1970, when they co-founded Knopf Construction and Roger became a general contractor for commercial and residential projects.

Good luck, Roger.

As a result of the coronavirus and the ensuing global pandemic, local community service organizations are operating in tough times as most of their fundraising events have been canceled. But the members of the local Kiwanis Club haven’t given up hope of having their annual Cioppino Feast this year.

“As this pandemic lingers, the possibility of being able to host the event this year is becoming more and more unlikely, said Craig Kennedy, president of the club. “This lack of fundraising has put at risk many of the local youth programs we support.”

To that end, the club is encouraging the community to participate in an exciting virtual event and silent auction to support the club, which is participating with the other clubs in the greater San Jose area. All proceeds raised by this event go toward the Kiwanis Turnaround Scholarship program. All funds raised will be matched dollar for dollar by the Leo M. Shortino Foundation up to a maximum of $80,000 for all Division 12 clubs. Additionally, for the Morgan Hill club, a generous supporter has offered to match every dollar provided to the club by the Leo M. Shortino Foundation, meaning every dollar raised for the Morgan Hill club will be matched by two additional dollars.

There are several ways you can help them raise money. Purchase a ticket to the event for $50 and you will be entered into a drawing for $1,000 cash. The winning ticket will be drawn at the online virtual event held Aug. 6. You don’t need to be present to win. To purchase tickets, please call Tesha at (408) 718-9778 to provide contact info for the drawing and make out a check for $50 per ticket to “Kiwanis Turnaround Scholarship Fund” and mail it to: Kiwanis Club of Morgan Hill, P.O. Box 753, Morgan Hill, CA 95038-0753

One can also register on the silent auction website and make a suggested minimum donation of $50. Every $1 you donate means $3 goes directly to the Kiwanis Club of Morgan Hill. By registering, you will be entered into three additional drawings for $1,000, $300, and $200.

The silent auction site is available at:

Robert Airoldi