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Morning Lookout: No long weekend plans? We’ve got you covered

Good Morning! It’s Friday, July 2 and we’ll see more intermittent clouds and a high of 70. Even better, the National Weather Service forecasts much of the same mild temperatures through the whole long weekend.

Speaking of which, a large part of this newsletter is dedicated to that long weekend, Fourth of July and America in general — from events you won’t want to miss, to beach safety tips after Capitola Beach was revealed to be at unhealthy levels of dirty, and even the first-ever Slug-ympian preparing to represent Team USA in Tokyo later this month.

So without further ado, here are your headlines:

Happy Birthday, America: Fourth of July weekend events in live entertainment

The legendary Taj Mahal plays Roaring Camp on Saturday.

From live music aplenty to a First Friday photo exhibit, this post-pandemic long weekend promises to be full of excitement and entertainment for the whole family. Our Wallace Baine put together a list of events and concerts to get you out and about, feeling normal again. Find them all here.

Hula’s Island Grill has been a fixture in the community since 2006, but when the pandemic hit, they experienced...

‘World’s Shortest Parade’ ready to get its groove back

Wallace Baine and his wife, Tina, were part of The Great Morgani's "clone army" during the Aptos Parade back in 2012.
Wallace Baine and his wife, Tina, were part of The Great Morgani’s “clone army” during the Aptos Independence Day Parade back in 2012.
(Wallace Baine / Lookout Santa Cruz)

THE HERE & NOW: Wallace Baine dancing like God’s own fool as a Great Morgani clone is the kind of vibe Aptos’ Independence Day parade aims for — big dollops of wholesome Americana seasoned with only-in-Santa-Cruz eccentricity — as it returns from its COVID-19 break. And in his latest The Here & Now column, Wallace writes about that experience. Read it here.

READ ALSO: Scotts Valley to resume in-person Fourth of July celebration this summer — but no fireworks (Lookout Santa Cruz)

Tokyo, here she comes! UCSC student becomes first athlete from school to head to Olympics

In exciting news, UC Santa Cruz announced that astrophysics undergrad Isabelle Connor, 20, will be representing Team USA at the 2021 Tokyo Olympics as part of the group rhythmic gymnastics team — a first in the school’s history. Read more about Connor and see photos and videos of her competitions here.

Kevin Painchaud / Lookout Santa Cruz

With Capitola Beach ranking third-worst in the state in terms of water quality ahead of the Fourth of July holiday weekend, our Mallory Pickett talked to experts to find out what you need to know about swimming at a spot long popular with visitors from Santa Cruz County and beyond. Read more here.

‘An evolution in public service’: Local law enforcement, fire agencies gather for shooter training

Personnel on the move during Wednesday's active shooter drill.
(Kevin Painchaud / Lookout Santa Cruz)

More than 40 local law enforcement and fire departments wrapped up eight days of training this week at Scotts Valley High School that saw more than 500 personnel and dozens of community volunteers prepare for active shooter situations. Here’s what Lookout’s Kevin Painchaud saw and heard.

Around the state...

Gov. Gavin Newsom juggles numbered balls following the conclusion of a press conference at Universal Studios
Gov. Gavin Newsom juggles numbered balls after a news conference at Universal Studios last week. (Jay L. Clendenin / Los Angeles Times)

Newsom recall election set for Sept. 14: Lt. Gov. Eleni Kounalakis yesterday set Sept. 14 as the date for the recall election targeting California Gov. Gavin Newsom, leaving it up to voters to decide whether to oust a sitting governor for just the second time in the state’s history. The tight election timetable gives prospective candidates just over two weeks to decide whether to jump into an expected frenzied race to replace Newsom. Read more from the LA Times here.

A handgun with bullets on a table.
(Image by Brett Hondow from Pixabay)

California saw record surge in handgun sales during pandemic, attorney general says: Amid economic and political turmoil during the COVID-19 pandemic, California saw a record increase in the sale of handguns last year, and the number of long-gun purchases was higher than it has been in four years. With gun violence also surging, Attorney General Rob Bonta called on local law enforcement to step up efforts to reduce shootings. Read more here.

Presented by UC Santa Cruz

In recognition of UC Santa Cruz’s 2021 commencement, we present a few of our amazing grads. These scholars represent the...

Around the county...

Small student pods to continue after in-person school returns in Santa Cruz County (Santa Cruz Sentinel)

One lucky Santa Cruz County resident announced as winner of California Dream Vacation giveaway (KION-TV)

Man who shot at traffic with slingshot sentenced to 15 years in prison (The Pajaronian)

That’s it for today. If you’re enjoying our coverage, please tell your family and friends about our Lookout Newsletter & Text Center, where they can sign up for all the newsletters and alerts we offer. You can also keep tabs on everything we’re publishing through the day by bookmarking our website and following us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

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Have a great day!

Tulsi Kamath
Managing Editor