Santa Cruz County
These women enjoy outdoor dining on a bench overlooking the Main Beach in front of the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk. —Tarmo Hannula/The Pajaronian

A growing number of restaurants, cafes and pubs are shifting their furniture outdoors to accommodate customers during the coronavirus outbreak. Since indoor dining has been put on hold by county health officials, new patio, deck, porch, parking lot and sidewalk dining areas are springing up all over.

In downtown Santa Cruz today I rode my bike past Soif Restaurant and Wine Shop on Walnut Street and a crew was busy building a new wood deck, ramps and such to accommodate outdoor diners. While some places go for a less expensive set up — a few ropes, wood rails and signage — other places have installed planters, designer barricades, rocks, even large potted trees. There are four other restaurants on the same block of Walnut Street that have moved outdoors.

Former vice-president Joe Biden Jr. named California Senator Kamala Harris as his running mate in his bid for president of the United States. Harris, 55, was on a lengthy list of presidential hopefuls until she withdrew her name from the list.

A crew from TowBoatUs finally managed to haul the 13-year-old humpback whale off of the sands of Platforms beach (Rio Del Mar State Beach) Tuesday. The dead whale, which washed ashore July 30, has generated a powerful stink. On Friday a crew failed at trying to budge the beast. They were at it again Tuesday, this time with a powerful piece of earth moving equipment. A tow boat and a long rope put the finishing touches of hauling the whale out to sea.

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Tarmo Hannula has been the lead photographer with The Pajaronian newspaper in Watsonville since 1997. More recently Good Times & Press Banner. He also reports on a wide range of topics, including police, fire, environment, schools, the arts and events. A fifth generation Californian, Tarmo was born in the Mother Lode of the Sierra (Columbia) and has lived in Santa Cruz County since the late 1970s. He earned a BA from UC Santa Cruz and has traveled to 33 countries.

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