This Is What It Looked Like at Fiesta on the Hill When Bernal Neighbors Discovered Their Inner Race Car Drivers

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Sunday’s Fiesta on the Hill was rather exceptionally fantabulous.

For 2014, Bernal’s traditional street fair on Cortland got a thoughtful makeover, with a strong emphasis on local character and creativity. The generic street fair vendors and beleaguered farm animals were gone, and in their place Fiesta 2014 gave our neighborhood fest a more homespun feel, with smiling goats, and historic surrealist Doggie Diner Heads, and happy parents steering happy children on mechanized ponies by remote control:

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It was a Main Street USA celebration of 21st century urbanism, and the crowds on Cortland were bustling:

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People looked like they were having a good time. There was even dancing in the streets. REPEAT: Confirmed dancing in the streets!

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Truth be told, however, your Bernalwood editor was unable to make his usual quasi-journalistic rounds at Fiesta on the Hill, because as part of this new 2014 emphasis on local flavor, I was recruited to babysit the two mutant race cars operated by the Bernal Dads Race Team.

So for most of the day, I was parked on Cortland, right in front of Andi’s Market.

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Playing chaperone for America’s Most Badass Volvo Station Wagon and a Alfa Romeo disguised as a cookie was a hindrance to my wanderings. But it turned out to be a great way to meet a lot of awesome Bernal neighbors.

In particular, it was fun to watch Bernalese of all ages as they sat in the Volvo and visualized the adrenalin-fueled excitement of driving the car in wheel-to-wheel combat on a race track.

Here are some of the dashing future racers I met:

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Thanks to everyone who made Fiesta on the Hill 2014 so much fun. Bravo, stay sexy, and can’t wait until 2015.

PHOTOS: Telstar Logistics

A Sneak Preview of Sunday’s New 2014 Fiesta on the Hill on Cortland

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Mark your calendars, planning people. Fiesta on the Hill happens this Sunday, October 26.

Fiesta on the Hill is a Bernal tradition — a bustling Cortland street party that also benefits the intensely important Bernal Heights Neighborhood Center. This year, the organizing committee decided to *cough cough* spice up the marriage a bit by rethinking the standard Fiesta on the Hill format.

Neighbor Genevieve is on the Fiesta organizing team, and she shared this preview of some sexy new attractions for Fiesta 2014:

Fiesta is now in it’s 26th year. 10 am to 5 p.m. Sunday, 10/26/14

The big news is that this year we’re really focusing local makers and movers!

  • On Main Stage we’ll have big time children’s music musician (and SF resident!) Frances England playing from 12:30-1:30
  • Lots of local musical acts: 30th Street Chorus, Manila Slim, Duo Pizzicato (plays regularly at what used to be Liberty Cottage)
  • Salsa band Los Boleros to close out the festival
  • City grazing goats (in lieu of the sometimes un-PC petting zoo)
  • Food trucks from Off the Grid
  • Bernal muralist and celebrity artist Amos Goldbaum will be selling his sexy shirts
  • Bernal Dads Racing will have their race cars on display, including America’s Most Badass Volvo Station Wagon
  • Savor tasty gourmet funnel cakes with bacon in agave syrup, from the folks at Endless Summer Sweets (a graduate of the La Cocina program).
  • Cruise Cortand on a mechanized horse from Mission Ponies

UPDATE, 23 October: Neighbor Genevieve seeks some additional volunteers at Fiesta:

The job: guarding barricades and soliciting for donations for the BH Neighborhood Center
Hours: Flexible. But we are asking for 4 hour shifts, 10 am-2,pm and 2-6 pm
What They Get: Tee shirt, and redeemable tokens for lunch for Pizza Hacker and Frozen Khusterd, and free coffee from Philz!
Must Be: Friendly, able to stand for that amount of time
 

Tonight: There’s a New Variety Show at the Moonlight Cafe

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A “happy pirate team” of Cortland merchants have conspired to create a new, monthly variety show at the Moonlight Cafe, and there’s one happening tonight.

Ms. Monique from Heartfelt shared the news:

Monique from Heartfelt and Aziz from Moonlight have teamed up with local funny gal morgansfunny to host a monthly Variety Show in Bernal at the Moonlight Cafe (634 Cortland).

It happens every 3rd Wednesday of the month (there’s a show tonight, October 15!!!) and the show consists of comedy, spoken word, and music.

There are four acts, and the show begins at 7:30 and runs about 90 minutes with an intermission. Cost is $10, and there is food and drink (modified from Moonlight’s regular menu) available for purchase. 21+ as we hope to make this a regular grown up night in Bernal.

We just started an Indiegogo campaign to raise funds in an attempt to make this show and other entertainment more available more often. Please check it out and spread the word!

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Wednesday: “Cupcake Happy Hour” at Little Bee Baking’s Anniversary Party

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There’s another one-year anniversary happening on Cortland this week. Bernal Neighbor Stacie Pierce from Little Bee Bakery extends the invite, with an extra pinch of yum:

Our 1 year anniversary is on Wednesday, 10/15!

We have had such a great year and have really felt a lot of love and support from Bernal and beyond. We just want to say thanks to everyone and are excited to be baking in Bernal for many years to come!

There will be cupcake “happy hour” from 4-6pm, with free mini cupcakes (one per customer – until they run out).

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PHOTO: Neighbor Stacie via Little Bee

Sexy New Parklet Completed In Front of VinoRosso on Cortland

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A few weeks ago, I noticed that construction had started on the new (and mildly controversial) parklet on Cortland Avenue at Anderson, right in front of VinoRosso Enoteca and the Inclusions Gallery.

Last weekend I noticed that construction was complete, and the parklet was already in use. Though last weekend’s warm weather certainly helped, the sidewalk scene in the new parklet night was booming. Very chic. Ridiculously glamorous. Rather cosmopolitan.

Opinions may vary, but I’m innnnnterested to see how/if this new parklet will influence Cortlandia’s robust social ecology.

PHOTOS: Telstar Logistics

Rumor Report: Gourmet Food Store Coming to Former Red Hill Books Space

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A nosy curious Bernal neighbor heard some innnnnnteresting things about what’s planned for the former (and much-lamented) Red Hill/Badger Books space on Cortland at Bennington:

I caught Matt locking up the old Red Hill Books and asked if I could be nosy and ask what he’s planning…

He was sweet, said it’s not a secret. The corner of Cortland and Bennington will become The Epicurean Trader — gourmet and local packaged goods. He’s hoping that locals will tell them what’s missing from the other nearby shops so he can keep us all stocked in fav products (not compete with Good Life or Avedanos). They also plan to invite local purveyors to present and so on and such  I think he also mentioned selling wine and beer too, but not positive.

Hmmmmmm. Bernalwood reached out to the owner of the building for comment, but we have not yet received a response.

Treat this as a rumor for now, although in the last few days several other Cortland merchants and curious neighbors have also told Bernalwood more-or-less the same thing about the plan for this storefront. Stay tuned…

PHOTO: via Google Maps

Pinhole Coffee Has Finally Opened, and It Is Awesome

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It was nine months ago when we first noticed the papered-over windows of 231 Cortland foretelling the coming of an intriguing-sounding cafe. Late last week, Pinhole Coffee’s doors officially opened for business, and by all reports, it is awesome.

Founded by JoEllen Depakakibo, Pinhole carries coffee from Linea Caffe, the baby of coffee-world superstar Andrew Barnett. This reporter was rather enamored of the Piccolo, a 1:1 ratio of milk and espresso in one of these pleasing little glasses.

The new kid on the block is also quite lovely, with stools made of acacia stumps, a mural by JoEllen’s brother Joey D, a wall of colorful stripes by local artist Leah Rosenberg, and a pegboard of succulents by Bernal’s own Succulence.

Speaking of Cortland connections, among the treats on offer at Pinhole is Anna’s Daughters Chocolate Rye Bark (yum!), made by the mother of New Wheel co-owner Karen Weiner.

And for those wondering where the cafe’s name comes from, as JoEllen explained it to coffee blog Sprudge,

Pinhole takes its name from photography, another of my appreciations. My brother Joey D in Chicago created my logo, and his wife Jen designed my business cards out of a thin strip of walnut–they have a pinhole that you can put over your camera or phone and it creates a pinhole image. I individually hole punch the cards each morning before I start my day.

Pinhole is open 6:30 a.m. till 5 p.m. on weekdays; 7:30 a.m. till 5 p.m. on weekends.

PHOTOS: JoEllen, by Telstar Logistics. Piccolo glasses and Leah Rosenberg wall, via Facebook.