Wednesday: A Conversation About Parking Woes in North Bernal

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Amid all the highly energized conversations happening in Our Faire City about scarce housing, a growing population, a booming economyexclusionary zoning, and nativist resentment, it’s somewhat remarkable that there has been so relatively little anxiety expressed in recent years about street parking in Bernal Heights.

Apart from the usual tempo of passive aggressive parking note gems, the Bernalwood Public Sentiment Tracking System has not detected much recent change in the intensity of conversation about street parking — other than to say that the conversation is always somewhat intense. But beneath the surface, tensions have come to a boil. According to a new handbill circulating in North Bernal, the parkopalypse is here, and the time for an Urgent Conversation About Street Parking is now.

Tomorrow, June 24, at 7 pm in the Precita Neighborhood Center, an ad hoc group of Bernal neighbors will gather to commiserate about street parking and discuss what is to be done. If that sounds like your kind of thing, then this may be just the kind of thing for you.

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Oh, and if you go, please report back here on the outcome.

PHOTO: Above, Neighbor Simon; below, Telstar Logistics

City Plans to Demolish Trellis at Esmeralda/Winfield Mini Park, Has No Plan to Rebuild

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Uh-oh.

The delightful Esmeralda/Winfield Mini Park is suffering from old age, and an indifferent City bureaucracy has no plans to keep the mini-park in proper order. In fact, the City plans to tear down part of the park in coming days. Eeek!

This will be a great loss for Bernal Heights, so Neighbors Nancy and Joan catch us up on what’s happening, and how you can help:

The wooden structures at the MiniPark were built with community input in the late 1970s. The structures haven’t been maintained, leaving them to deteriorate into their current state.

Now the trellis is slated to be removed within a week! The planter box surrounding the big pepper tree is also due to be removed, timeline unknown. The remaining picnic table and benches haven’t been mentioned as part of the takedown, but they have rot as well.

With a kick-ass slide, a stairway that goes up to Bernal Hill, and a place to sit, rest and hang, the MiniPark is a real gem in our neighborhood. It needs a serious upgrade, but the City hasn’t committed any funds or created any plans other than a piecemeal teardown. SF Public Works sent out a memo to the neighborhood saying:

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Without our pressure on the City to make the rebuild a priority, the plaza will slowly disappear or be fixed in a haphazard fashion.

Please send an email NOW, to Supervisor David Campos at David.Campos@sfgov.org telling him his office needs to look into funding the replacement of the deteriorated structures at the Winfield/Esmeralda MiniPark.

Look for future Bernalwood posts to let you know how to stay involved.

This is sad and bad.

As a historical reminder, this announcement from 1979 tells us much about the community origins of the Winfield Mini-Park, and how the City once paired with Bernal neighbors to help make the park so lovely. Let’s hope that can happen again:

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PHOTO: Neighbors Nancy and Joan

Modern Druids Host Solstice Feast on Bernal Hill

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It was the kind of feast that would have made the ancient Bernal druids proud.

Last night, on the evening of the solstice, a group of very resourceful, very tasteful friends hosted a proper dinner party on Bernal Hill, complete with white tablecloths, linen napkins, and porcelain plates.

A photo analysis by the Bernalwood Culinary Observation Team reveals that the menu included a fresh garden salad with feta and asparagus, accompanied by salmon served on a bed of orzo and lemon. Spa water with fresh berries was also provided. Solstice flower crowns were a fashion essential, and of course, the view was magnificent.

Bravo and well done, people. This looks delicious.

PHOTOS: Top two by @ohappyday; Bottom, Guillaume Lebleu

Sunday: Join Neighbors Annie Sprinkle and Beth Stephens for an Ecosexy Walking Tour of Bernal Hill

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This weekend, glamorous Bernal neighbor and sex-positive superstars Annie Sprinkle and Beth Stephens kick off a series of Pride Week events related to their Here Come the Ecosexuals project.

The ecocitement begins this weekend, with a pair of exploration walks on Bernal Hill. And since you’re so supersexy, you’re invited:

This Sunday, June 21 meet us – Annie Sprinkle and Beth Stephens – at our sparkly blue ‘Pollination Pod’. We will be doing two walking tours of Bernal Hill at 10:30am and 5:00pm.

You’ll be greeted by us and our friendly scouts: Pale Breast, Kalash, and Maria Ramirez. The adventure begins with Ecosex Orientation, then we’ll locate some E-spots (ecosexy spots) and explore ways to make love to the Earth through the senses.

Local environmental issues will be brought out into the open. There will be plenty of adventure and drama will ensue. The show will include a special water toast and culminate at the golden stone. By the end of the walking tour you’ll have an ‘ecosexual gaze’ and you might discover that you are an ecosexual too!

When: June 21st, at 10:30am (meet at 10:15am) and 5:00pm (Meet at 4:45pm) at our garage next to

Where: On the south side of Bernal Hill in San Francisco. The walking tour begins at the south entrance to Bernal Heights Park, on Bernal Heights Blvd. one block west of Anderson Street. Look for the bright blue ‘Pollination Pod’ trailer.

Cost: Free! Project is funded by our grantors and collaborating organizations. Donations welcome.

P.S. Both tours will be filmed. If you do not want to be filmed we will give you a special hat to wear so our videographer makes sure not to catch you on film!

We will have free snacks and kombucha after the tours for our walkers and our neighbors from our sponsors: Becka Shertzer of Brazen Nector, GT Kombucha, and Peeple’s Donut Farm.

PHOTO: Annie Sprinkle and Beth Stephens, by Manuel Vason with Guillermo Gomez Pena

 

Wednesday: Show and Tell About the History of Cortland Avenue

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If you’ve already picked out the outfit you’re planning to wear for tomorrow’s Summer Stroll (PRO TIPS: boas, seersucker, vintage Mork & Mindy rainbow suspenders), then here’s a perfect way to get in the strolling spirit …

Tonight, June 17 at 7 pm in the Bernal Heights Library, your time-traveling neighbors from the Bernal Heights History Project are holding a special show-and-tell about the history of Cortland Avenue:

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This month’s Bernal History Project meeting is a joint presentation with the good folks at our Bernal branch library. It’s a special evening dedicated to sharing the history of Cortland Avenue. We’ll be showing a selection of photos, ads, and news articles about Bernal’s main shopping thoroughfare. (Sorry, Precita and North Bernal neighbors — we promise we’ll do a slideshow about you very soon!)

We invite you to attend and bring your own memories of shopping and living on Cortland. If you’d like to say a few words on the night, please drop us a line beforehand — maybe we can get a real live show-and-tell going. Audience participation is positively encouraged!We’ll have volunteers from SFPL on hand to record your Cortland-related stories and memories. If you’d like to bring photos and news clippings to share, we can get those scanned for our archives, too.

Oh, in case you’re having a hard time getting oriented to that photo up top, it’s a pitcture of Cortland avenue on October 11, 1909, looking east from Bocana. Here’s an annotated guide:

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And because it’s de rigeur, let’s zoom and enhance:

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PHOTO: Cortland Avenue, 1909. From the SFMTA Photo Archive

Thursday: Come Out for Two Glamorous Summer Strolls Along Two Bernal Streets

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As you know, for tens of thousands of years, the ancient druids who once populated our lands gathered each year on Bernal Hill during the longest day of the year to celebrate the arrival of summer and the harvest of the seasonal foodstuffs that brought them joy and sustenance.

This year, for the first time in the history of the galaxy, this ancient Bernal ritual will begin a new chapter, as our two merchant tribes from Cortlandia and La Lengua will each hold a Solstice Celebration on the same night, and in the same spirit, at the same time — on two different streets.

Specifically, on Thursday night, June 18, the shamans from the Bernal Business Alliance will hold the  2015 Summer Solstice Stroll on glamorous Cortland Avenue. Simultaneously, the high priestesses from the Mission Bernal Merchants Association will hold their first-ever Summer Stroll along the bustling flatland sidewalks of Mission Street between Randall and Cesar Chavez.

The MBMA’s Mission Street Summer Stroll happens on Thursday from 4 to 7:30 pm:

Don’t miss this Thursday’s Mission Bernal Merchants Association SUMMER STROLL! Look for food specials, art events and other fun activities up and down the street. Participating businesses include Ichi Sushi, BEL, Secession Art and Design, The Blue Plate SF, Iron & Gold, Virgil’s Sea Room, The Front Porch, Cafe St. Jorge, The Rock Bar, Cole Hardware, The Knockout and more!

Food Specials:
ICHI Kakiya – $1 Oysters; Happy Hour Food & Drink Specials
ICHI Sushi – Izakaya Happy Hour
Bel  Happy Hour Belgian Food & Drink Specials
The Blue Plate — 3 –course prix fixe meatloaf /Fried Chicken /Rose Flight
Iron & Gold — Amelia Ray will be performing 5-7 pm.
– $6 Celery Chavez: Tequila, muddled mint, fresh lemon, simple syrup & celery bitters.
– $6 Manhattan: Bourbon, sweet vermouth & bitters.
– $3 beers on tap. $5 well drinks.
Virgil’s Sea Room — $1 off draft beers and our $5 Mules, Margaritas and Micheladas until 8 PM

Art:
Secession Art and Design — Live Painting/Drawing, TBD; discounting the 94110 shirts
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– Jaewon Lee, a 10 year old graffiti artist,
– Painting a canvas outside space from 5 PM to 7 PM
– Little Green Cyclo truck in front of our space with a stroll special
– Josh and the Klipptones play from 5 PM to 7 PM
– Henna Tattoos

Fun Events:
The Front Porch — hop scotch and free popcorn on the porch from 4 till 6:30. Fried chicken samples will go on till the end. .
The Rock Bar— Drink Specials
Cafe St. Jorge — Trivia Game
The Knockout — Drunk Bingo Night

Community Info:
Hospital Project by HerreroBoldt
MUNI Forward
Mission-Valencia Plaza Information

On Cortland, the Summer Stroll is on Thursday from 6 to 9 pm. Neighbor Ken from Succulence and Neighbor Darcy from Heartfelt share some of the 2015 highlights:

The Bernal Business Alliance’s annual Summer Stroll is happening Thursday evening, June 18th from 6-9pm. Many businesses up and down Cortland Ave will be taking part in this intimate neighborhood party. This year we are having a “Focus on Food” with yummy bites and drinks offered at many of your favorite shops along with some live music.

Events like the Summer Stroll and December’s Holiday Stroll are part of what makes Bernal Heights such a throwback community, with a strong emphasis on community. These nights are a great opportunity to support your local businesses while being feted by them in a show of gratitude and celebration.

Come stroll along Cortland on the 18th. Taste some treats, sip some beverages, do some summer shopping and say hello to all your favorite neighbors and store peeps as we toss our worries aside for the evening and focus on the bounty of luck that brought us to Bernal Heights in the first place.

12 Small Things
12 Small Things is having a sidewalk summer sale of handmade artisan products at 436 Cortland Ave

Bernal Homeopathy
Bernal Homeopathy and East-West Integrative Clinic will be under one roof starting July 1st at 406 Cortland Avenue, in East-West Bernal! For the stroll Bernal Homeopathy will be at 406 Cortland maybe with one or two other folks who will work at EWB, on the front porch. They will also have appetizers from Little Nepal.

Bernal Star, Vega, and Vinorosso
Bernal Star & Vega will offer “Bernal Stroll Specials”
Vinorosso will have Summer Stroll happy hour until 9pm ($4 prosecco and Lambrusco!)

Epicurean Trader
Main Event: EPICurean Sandwich Tasting
(taste and vote for our new prepared sandwich range from local Bernal Employee/Chef)
Other Events:
– Llano Seco heirloom beans and sustainably farmed meats tasting event
– Miyoko’s Kitchen Vegan Cheese tasting event
Promo: Win A $50 Gift Voucher raffle!

Heartfelt
Local one-man band cajun musician Brian Belknap will play. Mark will be making a refreshment. The Grommet is hosting a party at the store the same night. And Laura is doing free Tarot readings

Micheal Minson
Climb will have the famous Airstream parked in front of New Wheel with the bluegrass band Windy Bluegrass.

Pinhole Coffee
We have the delicious Burr Eatery on board to serve that night (burritos made in the style of Sonora, Mexico) and treats from Eatwell Farm’s Icebox. Our coffee bar will be open for purchases, too!

Red Hill Station
Red Hill is having an oyster extravaganza!

Sandy Owens Massage and Healing
Sandy Owens Massage and Healing will be at her new location at the Cutting Edge from 6:30-7:30! Eileen Claytor of the Cutting Edge will be there too serving light snacks from 6-9pm, 1000 Cortland Ave.

See you out there!

Bernal Neighbor Describes Intense Encounter Outside Planned Parenthood

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Neighbor Mary visited the Planned Parenthood clinic on Valencia last week, and the scene outside was very unpleasant. She tells Bernalwood:

I have been lucky to not encounter anti-abortion protesters since my college days in Boston. I never saw anything like what I saw today.

Planned Parenthood Valencia has served me, a native of Bernal SF, for years. I have Uterine Fibroids and have been taking oral contraceptives since I was nineteen.

I work in SOMA. Swing shift, so I missed refilling my prescription. Planned Parenthood’s online patient portal came to the rescue. On Thursday, I decided to head to work earlier and hit up the clinic to grab my three-month supply and jet to work. Outside Planned Parenthood I encountered the most hideous, aggressive, protester.

She was cloaked in a fake lab coat and wheelchair. As she approached, she seemed mentally-ill. I’m compassionate, because I have a mother with mental illness and I’ve worked with the disabled population. She immediately asked if I was there for an abortion. I politely told her my reasons for being at Planned Parenthood were none of her business.

She then continued to share a laundry list of ridiculous inaccuracies about Planned Parenthood and it’s services. I was floored by her lack of boundaries.

She may be anti-abortion, but I’m anti-aggression, and she’s just lucky I don’t enjoy engaging with law enforcement. She was ripe for concrete-to-middle-of-the-street counseling. I should be able to pick up my anti-baby pills in peace!

The incident left me nervous and freaked out. The staff at Planned Parenthood were so sweet, and they got me out of there ASAP. I was afraid to leave — so were many of us that morning. Would love to hear more about what can be done about the harassment. I would never be allowed to harass people like that outside of a church or even a bar!

As previously reported, protest activity outside the Valencia Planned Parenthood took a darker turn last year, after the US Supreme Court invalidated a Massachusetts law that created “buffer zones” around clinics that provide abortion services, on First Amendment grounds.

GRAPHIC IMAGE WARNING: The un-hidden version of the photo at the top of this post is displayed here:

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PHOTOS: Neighbor Mary