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News and Features
04.29.09

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Phaedra

Jack O'Neill: inventor of the neoprene wet suit.

Faces of Santa Cruz

Metro Santa Cruz celebrates 15 years with a series by portrait photographer Dina Scoppettone

Photographs by Dina Scoppettone


In some ways nothing's changed. The first issue of Metro Santa Cruz featured an interview with Neal Coonerty that saw the Bookshop Santa Cruz patriarch girding for battle with a chain store: the Barnes & Noble proposed for downtown. Writers examined the campaign finance transactions of three Assembly contenders: Gary Patton, John Laird and Bruce McPherson, the eventual winner. In the second issue (which actually came out three weeks later for reasons nobody remembers anymore), reporter Jamie Marks took on six stiff anti-panhandling ordinances, a surprise development from a progressive City Council.

But of course everything's changed. Coonerty's dark hair is silver now, and his daughter now wages Bookshop's fight against the chain of chains, Amazon. Patton, Laird and McPherson have retired from or been termed out of public office, and this year's raft of anti-panhandling ordinances from the Santa Cruz City Council wasn't much of a surprise. It's been a decade and a half of transformation, from Clintonian prosperity to Bushian insolvency, from Jesse Helms to Barack Obama, from the Mac SE to the iPhone.

Metro Santa Cruz, too, has evolved since the day the ivy-covered bunker on Union Street opened for business. We have two bathrooms now, the editor doesn't own a single Hawaiian shirt and the classifieds aren't as much fun to read. But the job is still basically the same, and in its heart the community is too. Taking a cue from our colleague Neil Smyth, who takes us out when it's his birthday, we're celebrating our 15th anniversary by presenting a portrait of Santa Cruz by photographer and Santa Cruz native Dina Scoppettone. The newsmakers, artists, activists and cultural icons who make Santa Cruz what it is are all here, reminding us of why we keep coming back for more, week after week, year after year.

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