A collection of photos Gail Newel put together of her son Nyeland.
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Morning Lookout: Newel opens up on son’s fentanyl death; Boardwalk’s music lineup

Top of the morning, Lookout friends! It’s Wednesday, April 27, and Santa Cruz County is headed for a partly cloudy day, with winds picking up in the p.m. hours and temperatures in the 60s.

We’re starting the morning with Part 3 of “Poisoned,” our series on the fentanyl epidemic and its toll on our community, with Dr. Gail Newel, Santa Cruz county’s top doctor, opening up for the first time about the pain of losing her son Nyeland to fentanyl. A powerful read from Lookout’s Mark Conley, and well worth your time.

Other stories you should have on your radar today:

We’ve also got updates on the Gilroy Garlic Festival and Phil’s Fish Market, so let’s get to all that as we swoop through today’s headlines.

Quelling the ‘stigma of shame’

Gail Newel looks up at the artwork of her son, Nyeland, who died of a fentanyl overdose in 2016.
(Kevin Painchaud / Lookout Santa Cruz)

If it can happen to Santa Cruz County Public Health Officer Gail Newel and her wife, Kelli, both longtime physicians, then it can happen to any family. If it can happen to the highest achievers in our society, like doctors and dentists and lawyers, then it can happen to anyone. Nyeland Newel was a 38-year-old dentist who picked up an opioid craving while at UC Santa Cruz. His addictive genes collided with America’s opioid crisis in tragic fashion. Mark Conley has the story.

“POISONED” PART 1: As fentanyl’s painful death toll grows in Santa Cruz, taking young lives, it’s time for meaningful solutions

“POISONED” PART 2: Hungry for answers: Fentanyl town hall confirms a community plague and crying need for a better response

Santa Cruz City Council offers a unanimous ‘no’ on divisive Measure D; Greenway proponents unfazed

A Santa Cruz local enjoys his ride down the new trail rail path.
(Kevin Painchaud / Lookout Santa Cruz)

The Santa Cruz City Council voted unanimously for a resolution opposing Measure D at Tuesday’s meeting. That was little surprise to the YES Greenway collective, which says it is pleased the topic will ultimately be decided by voters. Get the details from Max Chun and Nik Altenberg.

LAST WEEK: YES Greenway files police report for defaced campaign signs; opposition calls it a desperation move (Lookout)


Boardwalk’s free summer music and movies return in a new format — is that good or bad?

Live music post-pandemic will feature local acts at the smaller Colonnade Stage on Thursday nights. Free movies on the beach will now be on Fridays, including “The Lost Boys,” which will be screened Halloween weekend. Wallace Baine has the details.

MORE FROM WALLACE: MAH’s ‘Strange Weather’ contemplates humanity’s predicaments through art

Gilroy Garlic Festival canceled, Phil’s Fish House moving and mountain markets reopen

The 2022 Gilroy Garlic Festival is cancelled, and future events are postponed indefinitely.
(Via Facebook)

In her weekly On Food newsletter, Lily Belli has the latest on a pair of beloved institutions, welcomes back farmers markets in Felton and Scotts Valley and more. Dig in here.

MORE FROM LILY: Find all of Lookout’s food and drink coverage in one place

Masks are off, COVID rates are up and musicians are once again on edge about touring

Fans at the first weekend of the 2022 Coachella music festival.
(Gina Ferazzi / Los Angeles Times)

A slew of acts have canceled tour dates as COVID cases rise once again, casting a pall over what was shaping up to be a record-setting concert season. Read more here from our partners at the Los Angeles Times.

MORE: Kamala Harris testing positive for coronavirus underscores rising cases in California (Los Angeles Times)

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Around the county ...

House, SUV, trailers destroyed in two separate Santa Cruz County fires (Santa Cruz Sentinel)
Santa Cruz council adopts new public gathering rules (Santa Cruz Local)
Farm, biotech company secures more grants for education programs (The Pajaronian)
Kidnapped San Jose baby found safe, three suspects in custody (San Jose Mercury News)
New Monterey Bay F.C. soccer stadium will be ready for home opener May 7 (KSBW-TV)

And that’s what I know this hump day morn. If you missed Lily’s newsletter yesterday or would like to get Wallace’s Weekender in your inbox tomorrow, click over to our Lookout Newsletter & Text Center — and keep tabs throughout the day by bookmarking our website and following us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

And what better to get you, and us, over the hump than by supporting local journalism, right? Our content isn’t possible without community support, so if you’re not already, please consider becoming a Lookout member.

Have a swell Wednesday — I’ll see you back here tomorrow morning.

Will McCahill
Lookout Santa Cruz