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There are plenty of great events happening this weekend in Pleasanton and Livermore! Take a look.

Get ready to hop on your bike – a family-friendly event is coming this weekend to Pleasanton! The Community Bike Ride will take you through the streets of Pleasanton and Dublin this Sunday, May 31st at 9:30AM. To learn more, click here.

A night of dance is heading to Livermore! Valley Dance Theatre presents their spring showing at the Bankhead Theater tomorrow, May 30th at 7PM. For tickets, click here. 

A high-energy tribute show is coming to Pleasanton this weekend! The Super Diamond First-Class Tribute to Neil Diamond will perform at the Firehouse Arts Center tomorrow, May 30th at 8PM. Click here for tickets.

Kick off the summer with some great reads on Sunday in Livermore! Learn about current bestsellers and upcoming titles with Judy Wheeler, owner of Pleasanton’s Towne Center Books at the Civic Center Library this Sunday, May 31st at 2PM. For more info, go here.

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Your Saturday and Sunday will filled be with fun, art and culture in the Bay Area!

Come out for a grand performance in Pleasanton this weekend by the Pacific Repertory Theatre. The company presents Tony Award®-winning show “Fiddler on the Roof” on Saturday, April 18th at 8PM. Click here for tickets.

It’s time to stock up on all your favorite reads this weekend in Pleasanton! The Friends of the Pleasanton Library is hosting a book sale at the Pleasanton Library meeting room from 11AM to 3PM on Sunday, April 19th. Get more info here.

Classical tunes will fill the theater this weekend in Livermore! The Pacific Chamber Symphony will perform Karl Ditters von Dittersdorf’s Symphony No. 1, “The Four Ages of Man” and Felix Mendelssohn’s “Italian” symphony as the finale for the orchestra’s 26th season. The performance starts at 2PM this Sunday, April 19th at the Bankhead Theater. For tickets, click here.

To make sure you’re always in the loop and up to date with everything happening in your community, be sure to Like the Ponderosa Facebook page. 


March Weekend Fun!

March 20, 2015

It’s another great weekend in the Bay Area. Check out what’s happening near you on Saturday and Sunday.

Celebrate Irish heritage this weekend in Pleasanton! Premier Celtic harpist and spoken word artist, Patrick Ball is coming to the Pleasanton Library this Saturday, March 21st at 2PM. Known as an “American master of the Irish instrument,” Ball has sold over half a million albums and has won national awards. For more info, click here. 

Your weekend isn’t complete without a trip to the farmers’ market! The Sunday market in Livermore brings you the freshest produce and lots of booths to explore from 10AM to 2PM.  Learn more info here. 

Travel back to the days of teen idols and bouffant hairdos this weekend in Pleasanton! Kit & The Kats: Put a Nickel in the Jukebox mixes R&B, pop and rock ‘n’ roll this Sunday, March 22nd at the Firehouse Arts Center at 3PM. For tickets, go here. 

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Seasonal changes definitely take place in Northern California! And along with that comes certain maintenance chores that are specific to the weather. Here are some great tips to keep your living and outdoor space in tip-top shape all year long.

Get to mowing. Did you know that you should mow your leaves instead of raking them during the winter? The cut-up leaves will fall among your grass blades and help nourish the lawn during the cooler months.

Spring is the best time to fertilize your lawn so it keeps looking great throughout the summer months.

Keeping it clean. Remember to replace and clean filters in your home once a month!  You’ll also need to check and clean your dryer vent, air conditioner and ceiling fans.

Safety first. Change smoke detector and carbon monoxide detector batteries twice a year (a good rule of thumb – replace the batteries when the time changes in the fall and the spring). Inspect your fire extinguisher at the same time to make sure it’s working properly.

Tree-trimming time. Late winter is the ideal time to prune your trees and shrubs. Your plants have lain dormant and prepared for spring growth. A trimming will encourage their bloom.

Flip the switch. Make sure your ceiling fan blades are reversed during the cold months to help circulate hot air into a room. And here’s more great news – you’ll save money with this helpful tip due to increased energy efficiency. Flip the switch back in the warmer months to ensure the circulation of cool air.

Chim – Chimney. Now’s the time to have a professional chimney sweep clean out your fireplace. Getting rid of soot buildup during the cold months is more than just a matter of cleanliness. A deep clean of the chimney might prevent fire.

No gutter trouble. Clean your gutters so that leaves and debris don’t result in a clog! You’ll also want to clean your drain pipes and position them to drain away from your home. Put this on your schedule every spring and fall.

Another purpose for curtains. They’re not just for shade! Layer your window décor to make your home even warmer during the winter. Cotton flannel or curtains made of insulation material will do the trick.

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This weekend brings plenty to do in the Bay Area. See all that you can explore near home in the coming days.

It’s all about cars this weekend in San Jose! The Silicon Valley International Auto Show is happening this Saturday, January 10 and Sunday, January 11 at the San Jose McEnery Convention Center. Click here to learn more.

It’s all about music this weekend in Pleasanton! The Vintage Brass Quintet brings masterful horn playing to the Pleasanton Public Library on Sunday, January 11 at 2PM. For more info, go here.

Volunteer at one of the biggest events of the year this weekend in San Jose! The annual pruning of the roses is taking place at the San Jose Municipal Rose Garden. Hundreds of volunteers are needed to prune the 3,500 rose bushes, and everyone is invited to help! Come out this Saturday, January 10 from 8:30AM to 12PM. Learn more here.

The Kingston Trio is hitting the stage this weekend in Livermore! The American folk music ensemble’s tight harmonies, smooth vocals and classic sounds will have you singing along this Saturday, January 10 at the Bankhead Theater at 8PM. For tickets, click here.

It’s time to create this weekend in Pleasanton! The Lawrence Hall of Science Inventor’s Workshop: “Wobble Bots” is happening this Saturday, January 10 at 1:30PM. This workshop for grades 3-5 presents a hands-on experience in electrical engineering. Click here for more info. 

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What better way to welcome the new year than with a sweet recipe that everyone will love—and one that pairs well with champagne!

Rum Balls

Served chilled, these balls are formed when a batch of brownies is broken into bits, flavored with dark rum, and rolled.



  • Vegetable oil, cooking spray
  • 3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) of unsalted butter, cut into pieces
  • 6 ounces of semisweet chocolate, finely chopped
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup packed of light-brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon of pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon of coarse salt
  • 3/4 cup of all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons of dark rum
  • Coarse sanding sugar, for rolling



1. Preheat oven to 350° F. Coat a 12-by-17-inch rimmed baking sheet with cooking spray; set aside. Melt butter and chocolate in a small heatproof bowl set over a pan of simmering water, stirring occasionally. Set aside.

2. Whisk together eggs, brown sugar, vanilla and salt in a large bowl. Stir in chocolate mixture and fold in flour. Pour batter into prepared baking sheet. Spread evenly with a rubber spatula. Bake about 10 minutes, until top is shiny and a cake tester, inserted into center, comes out with some crumbs attached. Let cool completely on a wire rack.

3. Break up brownie into small pieces; transfer to the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. With machine on low speed, pour in rum and mix until crumbs start to come together to form a ball.

4. Shape into 1-inch balls and roll in sanding sugar to coat. Transfer to a baking sheet. Refrigerate uncovered about 2 hours, until cold. Serve chilled or at room temperature.

Have a happy New Year!

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This yummy recipe is sure to make your Christmas morning even better! Enjoy!

Mascarpone-Stuffed French Toast with Salted Caramel-Banana Sauce


6 servings


20 mins


2 hrs to 24 hrs


1 hr at 375°F


12 slices of Texas toast

1 8-ounce package of cream cheese, softened

½ cup of mascarpone cheese

½ cup of chopped pecans or macadamia nuts, toasted

2 tablespoons of  packed brown sugar

1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon

¼ teaspoon of salt

6 eggs, lightly beaten

3 cups of milk

¼ teaspoon of salt

1 serving of salted caramel-banana sauce (recipe below)


1. Arrange half of the bread slices in a single layer in a 3-quart rectangular baking dish. In a small bowl, combine cream cheese, mascarpone cheese, pecans, brown sugar, cinnamon and salt. Spread cheese mixture evenly over bread in baking dish. Top with the remaining bread slices to make six stacks.

2. In a medium bowl, whisk together eggs, milk, and salt. Pour egg mixture evenly over bread stacks, covering all of the tops. Cover with plastic wrap. Chill for at least 2 hours, up to 24 hours.

3. Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a 15x10x1-inch baking pan with parchment paper. Arrange bread stacks in the prepared pan. Bake about 1 hour or until golden, turning stacks every 15 minutes. Serve warm with salted caramel-banana sauce.

Salted Caramel-Banana Sauce


¾ cup of packed brown sugar

½ cup of whipping cream

½ cup of butter

2 tablespoons of light-color corn syrup

1 teaspoon of vanilla

½ teaspoon of sea salt

1 banana


1. In a heavy medium saucepan stir together brown sugar, whipping cream, butter and light-color corn syrup. Bring to boiling over medium-high heat, whisking occasionally; reduce heat to medium. Boil gently for 3 minutes more. Remove from heat. Stir in vanilla and sea salt. Pour into a small bowl. Cool to room temperature. If desired, cover and chill for up to 24 hours. (If chilled, let stand at room temperature for 1 hour before serving.) Stir in banana, thinly sliced.

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The Holidays Are Here!

December 11, 2014

Get out and about and enjoy some holiday festivities this weekend in the Bay Area!

Grab some great reads and yummy treats with Santa this weekend in San Jose! Celebrate the season at a Winter Holiday Party this Saturday at the Bascom Branch Library from 11AM to 1PM. Make a craft, receive a free book and snap a pic with jolly Old St. Nick. For more info, click here.

Sugar plums will dance through your head this weekend in Livermore! Experience the music of Tchaikovsky and the magic and wonderment of The Nutcracker, this Sunday at the Bankhead Theater at 2PM. Get tickets here.

Santa Claus is making his way to Dublin this weekend! Enjoy a scrumptious pancake breakfast and take photos with Santa at the Shannon Community Center from 8:30AM to 12PM. Register here.

Hey, superstars – groove to the tunes of a legendary band this weekend in Pleasanton! CLOSE TO YOU: A Christmas Tribute to The Carpenters is happening this Sunday, December 14 at 2PM. For tickets, click here.

To make sure you’re always in the loop and up to date with everything happening in your community, be sure to LIKE the Ponderosa Facebook page. 

The holiday season is officially here, NorCal! Come out for these festive events happening on Saturday and Sunday in the Bay Area.

See downtown San Jose turned into a whimsical holiday fantasy this weekend! Christmas in the Park at the Plaza de Cesar Chavez is an annual event featuring glittering lights, a 60-foot-tall Community Giving Tree, musical and animated exhibits, winter wonderland of lights and entertainment – now through January 1, 2015. For more info, click here. 

Lights, lights and more lights this weekend in San Jose! Festival of Lights is happening this Saturday, December 6 at Evergreen Village Square from 2PM to 5PM. Head over for holiday entertainment, cultural performances, photos with Santa and face painting. Click here to learn more. 

Sip, sip, hooray! Enjoy an assortment of tea, delectable treats and Santa this weekend in Dublin! Holiday Tea is taking place this Saturday, December 6 and Sunday, December 7 at the Sunday School Barn. Seating is available between 11AM and 2PM. Make reservations here.

A snow day is coming to downtown Livermore this weekend! The Lizzie Fountain will be transformed into a snowy winter wonderland for your little ones during Home for the Holidays, this Saturday from 10AM to 4PM. Get the details here.

Parades are definitely one of the best parts of the holiday season. Come out for the annual Hometown Holiday Parade in Pleasanton this weekend! Be a part of this festive community-based event this Saturday, December 6, starting at 5PM. Get more info here.

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Here’s a cute and crafty way to get your kids involved with your Thanksgiving festivities!

Turkey Bowl 

Age: preschool and up

Time: 3 hours, plus overnight

Type of activity: holiday arts and crafts

This turkey will look great as a centerpiece on your Thanksgiving table! Fill it with fruit, napkins or other items for your guests.


·         Plastic bowl

·         Mixing bowl

·         Vaseline® or petroleum jelly

·         Lots of Newspaper

·         Scissors

·         Brown tempera paint

·         Paintbrush

·         Orange, yellow, red, black and brown construction paper


First you’re going to make the papier-mâché bowl.

1.       This project is messy, so place newspaper over your entire work area.

2.       Cut more newspaper into 1-inch wide strips. You’ll need at least 50 strips for this project.

3.       To make the paste, combine an even amount of flour and water in the mixing bowl until it becomes the consistency of pancake batter. Start with one cup of each and add more if necessary.

4.       Cover the outside of the plastic bowl with Vaseline®. This will make it easier to remove the mold from the bowl.

5.       One at a time, dip a strip of newspaper into the mixture and lay it smoothly over the bowl. Keep adding strips until the bowl is completely covered with one layer of newspaper. To give the bowl more strength, add the first layer in a horizontal pattern, then add a second layer in a vertical pattern. Add a third layer of newspaper strips in a horizontal pattern.

6.       Place the bowl on top of a layer of newspaper in a cool, dry place. Let the bowl sit for several hours. You may even want to let it sit it overnight.

7.       When the bowl is completely dry, gently pull the newspaper mold away from the bowl.

Now it’s time to make the turkey.

8.       Paint the bowl brown and set it aside to dry.

9.       Draw and cut out all the shapes you’ll need from the construction paper.

·         1 brown circle 4 inches in diameter for the turkey’s head

·         10 rocket-shaped tail feathers about 8″ x 1″ in yellow, red and orange paper

·         1 small yellow triangle for the beak

·         2 tiny black circles for eyes

10.   Now, you’ll make the turkey’s wings. To do this, trace your child’s hands on a sheet of brown construction paper and cut out the shapes.

11.   Make sure the bowl is dry before you glue the construction paper parts to the turkey’s base. First, glue the tail feathers in a fan shape along the inside edge of the back of the bowl (the feathers should be pointing up).

12.   Next, glue one of your child’s handprints to each side of the turkey to make its wings.

13.   Glue the turkey’s beak and eyes in place on its head.

14.   Glue the turkey’s head to the top edge of the front of the bowl.

Have a Happy Thanksgiving!

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