Mountain Views News     Logo: MVNews     Saturday, December 22, 2012

MVNews this week:  Page 12



 Mountain Views News Saturday, December 22, 2012 

One Of A Kind: Featuring unique homes and gardens and the people who create them Story by Chris Bertrand 



 This week, we feature beautiful, lighthearted, kitschy and sometimes just plain fun Christmas decorations from the city of Arcadia’s holiday decorating awards. Many make it an 
annual tradition to slowly tour by car or by foot through these areas. All our nominees and winners share a wish to bring delight to a child, a smile to a harried adult, and invite us to 
pause and admire their joyful work. Join in the festivities! Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good night!

 This year, as is tradition, the City of Arcadia took nominations for exemplary holiday decorations in December. City staffer, Connie Schacatano, Executive Assistant/City Manager’s 
Office, assembled the list and checked it twice, releasing the list of award winners last week. 

Schacatano says this kind of program is contagious, building civic pride neighbor by neighbor. Residents see their neighbors making efforts to decorate their homes for the Christmas 
season and beautify the landscapes. Volunteer commissioners selected the winners, looking for exemplary lighting and decorations to make the season bright. They make their lists and check them twice. 
From that list, the winners are chosen.

The city’s Santa Squad, including Arcadia Mayor Harbicht, Santa Claus, played by former City Clerk, Jim Barrows & members of the Arcadia Beautiful Commission, Richard Cordano, Jan Shimmin and Victor 
Sy, made the presentations at each winning home. City staffer assistants, Linda Garcia and Mary Buttice from the City Manager’s staff, were also invaluable, assisting at the mood-enhancing event. 

The Santa Squad joined the motorcade of lighted sleigh complete with snow machine, a bus of volunteers, staffers and officials and the official “support” vehicle on its joyful duties. The sleigh was designed by 
Schacatano six years ago and built by Kip McClain from the Arcadia Public Works department. “This year, our fire department accompanied us complete with their fire engine,” said Schacatano.

Award winners received a certificate from Mayor Harbicht, yard sign and goodie bag from the city, as well as an official photo.

Here at Mountain Views, special kudos go to James Val, 
owner of the home at 411 San Luis Rey Road, whose 
distinctive handmade decorations warmed the hearts of 
many! Drum roll. And the winners are:

In no particular order… just like American Idol, Arcadia’s 
Holiday Decoration awards go to:

1. 701 S. Old Ranch Road
2. 872 Palo Alto Drive
3. 435 Cortez Road
4. 1055 Panorama Drive
5. 830 Singing Wood Drive
6. 1320 Santa Margarita Drive
7. 1610 Rodeo Road
8. 411 San Luis Rey Road
9. 1811 Grace Avenue
10. 2334 S. Second Avenue
11. 2812 Holly Avenue
12. 239 W. Longden Avenue

Enjoy… and happy viewing! It’s guaranteed to put you in 
the holiday mood!


There are new rules regarding short sales meant to improve the experience for both sellers and 
buyers, but the legalities and legwork can overwhelm even the most savvy. Of course, that's where 
the real estate agent shines, handling the paperwork and the phone calls, leaving you to focus on 
your move.

Keep in mind that if you're expecting to buy a home on short sale, you can get a great deal, but 
don't expect miracles from a bank that has agreed to accept a price lower than what the sellers 
owe on their mortgage. These short sales often generate multiple offers, and if a home has been 
approved to sell for $200,000, don't expect to waltz in and offer $125,000.

The real advantage of a short sale deal is that the home will likely be in much better physical condition 
than its foreclosure counterpart. Often, a foreclosed home will have been abandoned for 
months, and perhaps trashed before being vacated. A short sale property in better condition is in 
and of itself a benefit with real value that offsets any lower price you could offer on a foreclosure.

And for sellers, a short sale preserves your dignity, reduces some of the stress, and won't damage 
your credit history as much as a foreclosure. Whether selling or buying, consult an agent for the 
best results.

Mountain Views News 80 W Sierra Madre Blvd. No. 327 Sierra Madre, Ca. 91024 Office: 626.355.2737 Fax: 626.609.3285 Email: Website: