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In Photos: Pounding Drums and a Dancing Lion on State Street

Leung's White Crane Lion Dance delighted families downtown Saturday. The performance was part of the new Nature Gallery's grand opening weekend festivities.

Families strolling along State Street Saturday morning were treated to a special surprise, when performers from Leung's White Crane Lion Dance showed up in full dress, playing their pounding drums and bringing a large, golden lion to life.

It was all part of a weekend full of festivities celebrating the grand opening of the new Nature Gallery.

Carol Garsten, founder and owner of Nature Gallery, posed for pictures with the performers and greeted people who turned out for the performance and to browse the studio's wares, which include beautiful jewelry, precious stones, sculptures and more.

Garsten was beaming ear to ear and she watched the performance and spoke with guests Saturday.

"I feel so welcomed in this community," she said. "Since I started construction, so many people have come by to welcome me. It's been amazing."

Leung's White Crane Lion Dance started with a short show in front of Nature Gallery, at 296 State St., and then continued on down State Street toward Main and San Antonio, stopping every so often to perform again.

Families who were eating breakfast on the outdoor patio at Rick's Cafe were pleasantly surprised when the troupe set up right in front of the restaurant to entertain them while they ate.

"This is wonderful," said Lacie Smith of Los Altos Hills, who was dining with her husband. "I love all the beautiful colors, and the music they make with the drums. I'll definitely have to stop by and check out the Nature Gallery."

Sarah and Michael Chang and their 4-year-old son Max were walking down State Street headed toward Peet's Coffee for a snack, but had to stop and watch the show. Little Max jumped and boogied to the beat and was delighted when the troupe let him "pet" the lion after the short show.

"He really likes the music," Sarah said, smiling as she watched her son dance and clap to the beat.

Thomas Graves, who lives in Mountain View near the Los Altos border, had come out especially to check out Nature Gallery, since it sounded to him like a very unique kind of gallery.

"Everything is beautiful," he said as he browsed the gallery, and waited for Garsten to finish her conversations with others so he could meet her and compliment her on her new business. "I'm pleased we now have this type of gallery in the area. It's so different from all the others."

The Nature Gallery's celebration continues through the weekend. for a complete schedule of festivities.

Val Carpenter February 25, 2012 at 05:13 PM
So glad former Los Altos Mayor Roger Eng was able to attend this fun event on behalf of the City of Los Altos!

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