Chamber of Commerce plans San Jose World Championships for Labor Day

The San Jose Chamber of Commerce held its 40th annual barbecue Thursday night at Excite Ballpark, the home stadium of the San Jose Giants. As the candidates running in November’s election watched, the comforting event—there weren’t any speeches—lacked the political morsel many remember from the days when a fundraising barbecue for the now-defunct Political Action Committee was in the room.

The venue was more than just giving business VIPs the chance to wear a T-shirt or hat, it was also a good match for a new event prepared by the Chamber of Commerce Foundation – San Jose’s first World Championships, Labor Day weekend tournament at Arcadia Ballpark featuring youth baseball teams of the ten city council districts.

“The impetus for this event was to use youth sports to show unity in San Jose on election eve,” said Chamber of Commerce CEO Derek Sefer. “We felt that bringing all of San Jose together over a youth sports weekend was a great symbol of what makes the city amazing.”

Cindy Chavez, Santa Clara County Supervisor, and San Jose City Councilwoman Matt Mahan — the two candidates vying to be San Jose’s next mayor — will roll out the first ceremonial pitches in the opening game September 2 at 5:30 p.m. Teams playing from District 3, which Chavez represented when she served on City Council, and District 10, Mahan District. All matches will be played at the Arcadia Ballpark, near Eastridge Mall on Quimby Road, with the tournament planned for September 4 at 1:30 p.m. Mayor Sam Liccardo rolls out the first pitch.

Thanks to sponsors including Chevron, Hoge Fenton, and Safeway, you can attend free, and the full schedule is available at www.sjchamber.com/san-jose-little-league.

There will be a lot of fun besides the game of baseball too. San Jose Made brings in a face painter for the little kids who come to the games all weekend, and Sefer says he’d like to see them expand their role in the coming years with a potential art show. The weekend also includes an autograph session at noon on September 3, with baseball teams from San Jose State and Santa Clara University, along with San Jose Giants mascot Gigante, and a softball game between members of the San Jose Police Department and the San Jose Fire Department.

Creative Policies: Besides throwing baseballs, San Jose mayoral candidates Cindy Chavez and Matt Mahan will compete in a number of forums and debates until the November 8 elections. But one coming on August 31 stands out because it is all about arts and culture.

Four artistic organizations – Silicon Valley African Film Festival, MACLA, San Jose Jazz and San Jose
Tyco – Co-sponsored the Forum with the School of Arts and Culture in the Mexican Heritage Square, where it will take place at 5 p.m. The discussion will be moderated by Chick Nouviah, Founder and CEO of the Silicon Valley African Film Festival, and community members present will have the opportunity to ask questions.

Of course, you won’t only hear about arts and culture – attendees will experience it too, as the event will include performances by San Jose Tycho and poet Josémar Reyes, followed by a reception showcasing a small exhibition of the artists’ works. Julie Dang, Richard Hoffman, Edgar Ochoa, Jacqueline Solorio, Francisco Ramirez, Irene Salazar and Eddie Ramirez. You can respond to the invitation to attend to get a seat in creativesectorforum.eventbrite.com.

Honoring a fallen hero: US Navy Captain Matthew Manoukian, who was killed while serving in Afghanistan in August 2012, is being honored with a section of Interstate 280 designated in his honor. Assemblyman Mark Berman of Menlo Park authored the concurrent resolution, which passed unanimously, to designate the portion of I-280 that runs through the Los Altos Hills as the “Captain Matthew Patrick Manoukian Memorial Highway.”

“Captain. Berman’s heart of service and desire to leave the world in a better place than he found it represents the best that our country has to offer.” To celebrate the tenth anniversary of Captain Manoukian’s ultimate sacrifice for our country, Captain Matthew Patrick Manoukian Highway Memorial honors his legacy of uncompromising courage Unshakeable courageous leadership and extraordinary heroism.”