Help Protect Bernal Hill on July Fourth; Help Clean Up Bernal Hill on July Fifth

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It’s Fourth of July Weekend, which is a joyous magnificent thing. Happy Birthday America!

There are two essential things for all Bernalese to keep in mind on this holiday weekend:

1) Morons Will Try to Burn Down Bernal Hill on Saturday, July 4

Well, they won’t deliberately seek to burn down Bernal Hill. Nevertheless, history teaches us that during the City’s big fireworks display on July 4, Bernal Hill will be a popular place to watch the show. Many of those spectators will bring their own fireworks, and they will ignite them amid much whooping and cheering on Bernal Hill. This is a moronic to do, because the grass on Bernal Hill is very dry this time of year, and it’s very, very easy to trigger a big brush fire. Like this Fourth of July blaze in 2013:

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Eeeek! So let us now recall the July Fourth Pro Tips that Neighbor Sarah shared last year:

Do not set off fireworks. Definitely don’t set them off on Bernal Hill, which is covered in dry grasses and brush. You may recall that [in 2013], some moron set the Hill on fire. Luckily, no one was hurt, but imagine if this had happened in an area crowded with people watching the downtown fireworks display. If you remember no other item on this list, remember this one. No. Fireworks. On. Bernal. Hill.

If you see someone setting off illegal fireworks on Bernal Hill, call the police. Dial 553-0123 if nothing is on fire yet. Dial 911 or 553-8090 if there is an active blaze.

Okay, with that squared away, let’s talk about The Day After…

2. There Will Be a Neighborly Bernal Hill Clean-Up on Sunday, July 5

Notiwthstanding the admonitions contained within Item 1 above, there will still be a lot of post-party trash strewn around Bernal Hill after all the fireworky boom-booms. It happens. Fortunately, some of your finest and most valiant neighbors are planning a massive Sunday morning clean-up on the hill, and they want to meet you. Neighbor Edie from the Bernal GO! Team tells us:

The Bernal Go Team will be holding our annual Hilltop Cleanup this Sunday, July 5th from 10am to 11am. What a great time to catch some sun, get a little exercise, and clean up our hill after the festivities on the 4th. Gloves, bags, and pick up sticks will be provided by SF Rec and Park. We’ll meet by the notice board in the parking area of Bernal Heights Boulevard on the south side of the hill near Anderson.  With questions, call or text me at 415 515-2397.

Do it.

Have a great weekend, Bernal Heights.

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Ridiculously Talented Bernal Artist Seeks Glamorous Bernalwood Readers to Sit as Portrait Subjects

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You may remember Neighbor Aaron Zube from the terrific show he had at the Inclusions Gallery on Cortland this time last year. Well, Neighbor Aaron reached out to Bernalwood this week to share a remarkable proposal:

I’m working on a series of portrait paintings of Bernal Heights residents and was wondering if any of your readers would be interested in volunteering to have their portrait painted. This is just for my own practice (and to possibly show sometime in the future) & would give me a chance to meet some of my neighbors — no obligation to buy the painting. It would only require a few hours of their time. My website has my contact information if anyone is interested.

“If anyone is interested…” That’s funny! More like: Please take a number!

A some more of Neighbor Aaron’s recent work:

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IMAGES: Recent portraits by Aaron Zube, courtesy of Aaron Zube

Watch Last Night’s Colorful Sunset and Epic Moonrise from Bernal Hill in 50 Seconds

Did you catch last night’s fabulous sunset? Or, if you did catch the sunset, were you looking west instead of east?

Well, Neighbor Joe Thomas was looking toward the bay from his Eastern Observation Post atop Bernal Hill, and he took this wonderful time-lapse video of the sunset and the  moonrise.

There’s no sound, but go full screen and don’t just watch it once.

And when you’re done…. Special Bonus!

Neighbor Joel Kraut also brings us the view of the very same sunset from his Western Observation Post atop Bernal Hill, looking toward Sutro Tower:

New Map Reveals the Lost Waterways of Bernal Heights

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In his amazing new Seep City map of San Francisco’s lost creeks, springs and waterways, natural history researcher Joel Pomerantz reveals the places where groundwater once flowed in Bernal Heights.

Here’s the story it tells:

[On the map] today’s land forms are shown with 5-foot-interval contour lines. At this level of detail, we can easily see where human activity has filled extensive portions of the bay and where streets, highways, reservoirs and railroad grades cut into hills.

Our city had significantly more water before it was developed. Consequently, most of the water shown is from historical sources. The purple squiggles are bedrock springs found today. Natural and artificial lakes present today are outlined in white. Creeks of today are highlighted yellow.

Only a couple creeks still flow on the surface today. Finding them can be a challenge without this map. Some are virtually unknown.

The detail is remarkable. Here’s a close crop of northeast Bernal, with Precita Creek running along the upper part of the map and draining into the intricate Islais Creek watershed (where Bayshore stands today). Notice also the two active springs on the northern slope of Bernal Hill:

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And when you pull back to look at the city as a whole, you see how Bernal fits in to a much larger ecosystem:

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Want a copy of Joel’s maptastic creation? Visit his Kickstarter page, where you can order a map in your favorite size.

IMAGES: Courtesy of Joel Pomerantz

Old Trellis Removed from Esmeralda/Winfield Mini-Park

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Although we were warned this would happen, and although funding is now in place to provide for replacement, this is still a tough sight to see: Yesterday workers began removing the decaying trellis from the Esmeralda/Winfield Mini-Park.

*sigh*

While we await more detail on plans to replace the trellis, we can also begin moving through the Kübler-Ross Stages of Grief and Loss. (Current status: Bargaining).

Beyond that, we can also distract ourselves by reading the big feature SFist just published on the fabulousness of the entire Esmeralda stair corridor. It combines a little bit of history, with a little bit of Bernalwood’s previous coverage, with a bunch of pretty pictures, and a whole lot of appreciation. Enjoy:

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PHOTOS: Top, courtesy of Neighbor Matthew; below, courtesy of Neighbor Jan

Tonight: Phonographic Memories Picks Up the Beat, Moves to Glamorous New Bernal Nightclub Location

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You may remember that way back in September 2014, Neighbor Corey launched a project called Phonographic Memory by hosting informal, open-mike sessions at the Bernal Heights library where people were invited to share stories and music from their favorite old vinyl records.

Phonographic Memory has now become a regular thing, and here’s how it goes down:

Now Phonographic Memory graduates from the Bernal library and relocates to Bernal’s stretch of Mission Street, where you can join in tonight, June 30, at 7 pm at the Knockout (3223 Mission @Valencia).

Neighbor Corey brings the news, and the invitation:

For June, we have a very special edition of Phonographic Memory planned for you. We’re throwing a party! We’re making the trek from our usual spot at the Bernal Library down the hill to The Knockout, because libraries close early, and we want to party together all night long.

We’ve curated a diverse lineup of individuals who have contributed to the Bay Area music scene: Justin Torres (record dealer and DJ who helped re-ignite soul singer Darondo’s career), Lydia Popovich (stand-up comedian who managed Quannum records in the early 2000’s), Dan Lactose (guitarist for seminal punk/powerviolence band Spazz, producer for Hip-Hop duo Grand Invincible), and Winston Smith (artist responsible for designing the Dead Kennedy’s logo as well as countless album covers).

We have DJ’s Brycon, Wam Bam Ashleyanne and Stef providing the soundtrack to rock the night away.

The event will serve as a fundraiser of sorts, and will be complimented by an IndieGoGo campaign. We are asking a $5 donation at the door, and guarantee that you will be entertained!

Our goal is to obtain non-profit status, and ultimately secure grants to grow Phonographic Memory into a global community.

Music starts at 7:00pm, stories at 8:00. Hope to see you there!

Tosan Is a Bernal-Based Menswear Business For Rad Dads

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Neighbor Surya and Neighbor Nick live on stylish Ellert Street here in Bernal, in a house that has also become the headquarters for their new family-friendly menswear fashion business. Neighbor Nick wrote Bernalwood to say:

Shameless email, but that’s what husbands are for.

My wife and I met working for Old Navy HQ. She was a menswear designer there for over 7 years. After the birth of our first and (currently) only child Mikio, she made the very difficult decision to leave a career she loved and dedicate her time to raising our son.

Along this journey and specifically as I tried to find my way as a father who wanted to keep his personality but also have useful things for babies she came up with the idea to start a menswear line targeted at dads. Tosan is about celebrating great gear for the adventure of fatherhood.

100% made in America, 90% made in the Bay Area, and designed and curated right on Ellert Street in our very own beloved Bernal Heights.

The brand officially launched less than six months ago and recently had the incredible fortune of being featured on the Today Show with Carson Daly as part of a segment about 6 Father’s Day gifts that dad’s actually want.

Here’s a screen grab from that glamorous Today Show segment:

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Neighbor Surya adds:

This brand really was brought to life in the few blocks surround Cortland. We have a babysitter two mornings a week. I pack my computer and supplies up and make the block and a half hike up to the village. Almost every email has been sent from Progressive Grounds or Pinhole. The guys at Progressive know my order (Beet salad, no cheese, add avocado). Aziz asks after my son and I settle into the back room. And JoEllen from Pinhole has been my biggest neighborhood cheerleader. She is so inspiring as a fellow female business owner and person in general. Her positivity is infectious!

Very cool. Check out the sexxxy Tosan collection, for that special stone-cold sexxxy daddio in your life.

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PHOTO: Top, Neighbor Nick, Neighbor Surya and Jr. Neighbor Mikio, courtesy of Tosan