Town officials gathered Tuesday morning near the entryway to the new library next to the Civic Center to bury a part of their essence in a box for future generations—current Los Gatos information and memorabilia that will be resurrected in 76 years.
It seemed a bittersweet moment.
But everyone focused on the positive. A group of 15 children, between the ages of 3-7, were invited by Town Council members to participate in the ceremony. Everyone is hoping they'll be around in the year 2087—the year of Los Gatos' bicentennial celebration.
Town officials hope to track the group, called "Kapsule Kids," through addresses and locations over the next eight decades, explained Los Gatos Town Manager Greg Larson.
"We hope some of them will come back when they open the time capsule in 76 years," Larson said.
When the device is unearthed, the children's ages will be between 79 and 85 years old, Larson added.
Councilwoman Barbara Spector called the time capsule a brilliant way to commemorate the town's bicentennial and the children's group "a cool idea."
"They'll either be here or the town will be able to find them," Spector said of the kids.
A plaque was unveiled that will identify the spot where the device is buried. The marker is dated Aug. 10, 2087, the date of the town's 200th anniversary and the capsule's opening date.
A collection of photos, articles and local memorabilia was placed in the capsule, along with an iPad loaded with local information and a charger that town officials hope will still work after the passage of nearly eight decades,
The iPad was donated by Los Gatos residents Jonathan and Kelly Knowles and it contained important town documents such as its general plan, budget, annual report, newsletters, boards and commissions, pictures, videos and audio recordings. Hard copies of the documents were also inserted in the box as a back up.
Other items included articles from the library, copies of several newspapers, menus from local restaurants, town maps, a 2008 bottle of wine donated by , a red envelope of the movie The Social Network in Blu-ray, scrolls with messages from the public and library patrons, personal notes about life in Los Gatos and 50 notes from community leaders.
The iPad was also used during the ceremony to photograph and shoot video of the event.
Vice Mayor Steve Rice hoped his children or grandchildren would be alive to open it. "I wrote a letter about Los Gatos being a community that I hope remains a place that people want to come back to and live with their families for generations to come," Rice said, a fourth-generation Los Gatan whose grandfather served on the Los Gatos Planning Commission in the '50s and served as mayor in the '60s.
Councilwoman Diane McNutt said she, too, had written a letter for the capsule. "It will be something really special for the 200th anniversary of the town. Everyone will enjoy reading and looking at photos and get a glimpse of what life was like."
More than 100 people attended the ceremony which included former council members, members of the Friends of the Los Gatos Library and other town and library officials. Refreshments were served and the Friends were continuing their fundraising campaign to furnish the $12 million facility scheduled to open in early 2012. To date, the Friends have received pledges for 73 percent of the $2.1 million they hope will pay for fixtures and furniture for the new facility.
"We commemorate Los Gatos in 2011 ... so future residents will have an eyewitness account, a glimpse into our history and their ancestry," said Los Gatos Mayor Joe Pirzynski.
Soon, the town will have a Web page indicating all the materials contained in the time capsule. "[They] will tell the Los Gatos story better than any piece of memorabilia can," Pirzynski said.