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Archive for the ‘Business’ Category

May-27-2014

Hi-Five Sports Zone grand opening on May 31; enter to win a birthday party


CEO Ryan Tuchman (L) and General Manager Chris Tabarez stand on the Hi-Five court with Murphy the mascot.

For several months now, Hi-Five Sports Zone has been building out the former Walgreens space at 5411 Geary. The 5,000 square foot sports facility, designed to host sport classes, camps, leagues and special events, opens this Saturday with a special grand opening celebration.

This is Hi-Five’s first brick and mortar location. It started as a family business in Chicago in 1990. The company also offers its programs, designed for kids age 2-10 years, in Menlo Park, Atherton and Scottsdale, AZ.

Hi-Five chose the Richmond District for their first location because they “wanted to build a unique family sports entertainment destination for the city,” Hi-Five CEO Ryan Tuchman told us.

“It’s in a residential part of the city where families live, and there is a lack of indoor sports facilities there. And the space was perfect for what we needed.”

The large basketball court inside Hi-Five features 6 hoops which adjust in height for different age groups and skill levels. The large court can be used for basketball, flag football, volleyball, turf indoor soccer and more.

The building also includes restrooms, bleacher seating at one end, TV screens and a sound system. Tuchman said that for birthday party rentals, they can create photos collages of the birthday boy or girl and play them on the screens during the party.

Hi-Five’s mascot is Murphy, based on the family’s first French bulldog who passed away recently. You’ll see him featured around the court inside Hi-Five, and for certain programs, kids can collect Murphy Coins for various achievements which can then be redeemed for small prizes.

Chris Tabarez will be the General Manager for the Geary facility. Tabarez taught PE just down the road at Lafayette Elementary School and Brandeis School in Marin. He is also a former San Francisco State Gator and played professional basketball in Mexico.

This Saturday, May 31 from 10am to 2pm, Hi-Five is hosting their grand opening celebration. Stop by 5411 Geary to check out their new facility, meet Murphy the mascot, play games, win prizes and more.

Hi-Five has also established a charitable relationship with UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital San Francisco. They’ve pledged to donate one dollar for every child that registers for its youth sports programs throughout 2014 and will raise money for the hospital during Saturday’s grand opening event.

In honor of their opening, Hi-Five is also giving away a birthday party booking for up to 24 children ($399 value) to a reader of the Richmond Blog. To enter, fill out this short entry form. A winner will be chosen by the Hi-Five team at the grand opening on May 31, but you do not have to be present to win. Deadline for entry is Friday, May 30 at 5pm.

Welcome to the neighborhood, Hi-Five!

Sarah B.

9:50 am | Posted under Business, Kids, Sports | 5 comments
May-20-2014

Local links: Unimpressed Bison, free summer staycations, Skee-ball suit & more

Good day, Richmond District’ers! Here are some local links to kick off your Tuesday…

  • Even the Golden Gate Park bison got a taste of the Bay to Breakers madness on Sunday when a participant leaped the fence and began taunting them in their paddock. As you can see from the video above, he got pretty close and despite previous reports, was fully clothed. The man was arrested according to this funny tweet from the Richmond District station: “@sfpdrichmond: Officers just arrested a naked man in the bison paddock in GG Park. The bison seemed unimpressed.”
  • The Richmond District Neighborhood Center has published their Summer Staycation Schedule, which includes kayaking in the bay, camping at the Presidio, an overnight at the Zoo and a Bike Day in Golden Gate Park. They’re also adding two two Craftcations to the agenda, one for families and one for older youth and adults. All programs are free but space is limited so get all the details here (PDF).
  • Now covering the Inner Richmond: New app Washio claims people spend 13 hours per month doing laundry, so they want to reduce that to “just seconds” so you can get back to having real fun. Load up their app, place an order, and they’ll come pick up your laundry or dry cleaning from your home or office, and return your clean clothes back to you within 24 hours. No word yet on whether they lose a sock every load like the rest of us.
  • Game on! Skee-ball’ers that play in a national league at the Buckshot Bar on Geary are locking horns with the makers of Skee-Ball, who allege that the league name – Brewskee Ball – is infringing on their trademark, despite giving them permission to use the name in 2005. This has prompted a Skee The People drive to raise money for legal funds to fight the company. They’ve raised $22k so far. Can’t we all just skee along? [via SFGate]
  • Star of the Sea School (345 8th Avenue) is hosting their 41st annual festival on Saturday, May 31st from 10am to 4pm. The popular festival features food, games, crafts, a bouncy house, live entertainment and the always popular Touch-A-Truck when city agencies bring their police cars, fire trucks, street cleaners and other manner of big trucks for kids to hang out on. Admission to the festival is free but there is a $7 fee for entry to the Touch-A-Truck area.
  • Do you love all manner of flora and fauna? Do you love telling other people about it? Then we have just the opportunity for you. The Conservatory of Flowers in Golden Gate Park is recruiting volunteers to lead group tours and conduct school visits. The annual 7-week training session runs every Wednesday from August 6 through September 17 from 1-4pm, and costs just $60 cost. If you’re interested, contact Erika Frank, Director of Volunteers & Education, at (415) 637-4326 or efrank@sfcof.org.
  • Green Apple Books was honored at City Hall last week during Small Business Week. Oddly, the cute little girl in the photo with Supervisor Mar and Green Apple owner Pete Mulvihill is holding a RED apple… Name change coming?


5:04 am | Posted under Business, Golden Gate Park, Schools | 3 comments
May-16-2014

Support local businesses at Sidewalk Saturday on Clement Street

National Small Business Week is wrapping up this weekend, and merchants along Clement Street will celebrate it with their own event, Sidewalk Saturday.

Stroll down Clement between Arguello and Park Presidio Boulevard and visit the stores to find special sales, activities, food and drink, and community art.

Seedstore Clothing (212 Clement) is offering 20% off all purchases, and The Tidy Shoppe (4050 Geary) will also be at Seedstore offering tanning and waxing packages.

Just up the street, Foggy Notion Boutique (275 6th Avenue) is hosting local woodworker Zach Bruce, a custom furniture maker specializing in one-of-a-kind, live edge woodworks.

So get out there and support your local businesses in honor of National Small Business Week – they’ll appreciate it!

Sarah B.

9:24 am | Posted under Business, Shopping | 1 comment
May-8-2014

Local Links: Mayfaire Carnival, grad research, fundraisers, Green Apple & more


The labyrinth at Lands End. Photo by Stan-the-Rocker

Happy Thursday everyone! Here are some local links to distract you from the fog…

  • Argonne School’s Mayfaire Carnival fundraiser is this Saturday, featuring bouncing castles, a climbing wall, a dunk tank, crafts, games, a used book sale, raffle tickets for prizes, a silent auction and food. It runs from 11am until 4pm on the Argonne campus at 18th & Cabrillo. Admission is free.
  • A Stanford grad student is conducting a research project that investigates social interactions, specifically among neighbors, in the neighborhoods of Richmond District and North Beach. If you’d like to help her out, take the short online survey here (Richmond Dist or North Beach residents only!).
  • Back in April, a 3-year old boy named Nikita was hit by a truck while riding his bike across Fulton Street near 43rd Avenue, leaving him with critical brain and body injuries. Family friends are asking for financial help from the community to cover medical costs via an online fundraiser, which you can donate to here.
  • In other fundraising news, the George Washington High School baseball and softball teams need to raise $40,000 for a new batting cage facility, which the coach describes as “a first-in-class, enclosed, steel-structured cage” that will be permanent. Learn more and donate online here. P.S. – If you want the chance to win a signed bat from Giants player Hunter Pence, go to the end of the video for details.
  • Green Apple announced the winner in their t-shirt design contest. Congrats go to neighborhood resident Carrie Niziolek who is a scientist by day and part-time artist. She won $250 plus a $200 Green Apple gift card, and soon her design will grace hundreds of t-shirts and bags. Check out her winning design and runner-ups here.
  • There will be an open house meeting about the Ocean Beach Master Plan this Saturday in Golden Gate Park. The plan recommends ways to improve coastal access, restore ecological function and protect critical infrastructure in the face of chronic erosion and sea level rise at Ocean Beach. To find out more about the three projects that are underway, attend the meeting at the County Fair Building from 9am until 12noon.
9:27 am | Posted under Business, Ocean Beach, Schools | Comments Off on Local Links: Mayfaire Carnival, grad research, fundraisers, Green Apple & more
May-2-2014

Local Links: Romo pitches school, Aziza 2.0, plant sale, Saturday events & more


Sergio Romo speaks to students at Lafayette Elementary. Photo by Juan Pardo / SF Examiner

Here are some local updates to start your weekend. Have a good one!

  • Reminder: This Saturday the SF Botanical Garden in Golden Gate Park will host its 47th annual plant sale from 10am until 2pm, featuring over 20,000 plants. This year’s theme is drought tolerance hundreds of beautiful natives, succulents, and plants perfect for SF’s many micro-climates are for sale. The event also serves as a fundraiser for the garden.
  • If pampering is more up your alley, head to outer Balboa on Saturday for an open house at Elevation Pilates and Sweet Cheeks Skincare. Sweet Cheeks will be offering free Hand Treatments demoing all of the latest and greatest skincare technology, selling some skin care items at 50% off, and selling a Mother’s Day Gift Certificate that include a free gift with purchase. Elevation Pilates will be offering free classes, special pricing on class packages, and hosting an art show. The open house runs from 11am until 3pm at 3425 Balboa Street.
  • The community garden at the Richmond District Neighborhood Center is going strong. Some students from Katherine Delmar Burke School paid a visit recently to plant some kale for the community.


Burke’s students plant kale in the community garden at the RDNC. Photo by Kinder Musings.

  • Giants pitcher Sergio Romo was at Lafayette School (4545 Anza) on Tuesday to talk to students about the importance of education. It was Romo’s fourth visit for such an event, put on by Washington High School’s Athletes in Math Succeed program, in which high school students and professional athletes cheer on students to succeed in school. “It’s more personal to me,” Romo said of visiting the school, where he high-fived kids and signed their baseball paraphernalia. “I can relate to this program.” (SF Examiner)
  • The Chronicle reported this week that Aziza owner and cookbook author Mourad Lahlou is moving ahead with a second, downtown restaurant in the former Pacific Telephone Building (140 New Montgomery). He’s looking to open the Moroccan-themed, 6,000 sq. ft. restaurant in late 2014/early 2015. No word yet on Aziza’s future.
  • A writer at SF Weekly lamented over the forgotten era of the Tiki Bar when he journeyed out to Trad’r Sam’s on Geary, one of the first in the city. After hearing Warren G. coming from the jukebox and listening to patrons order chilled vodka shots instead of Tiki-themed rum drinks, he concluded that Trad’r Sam’s is “now just another bar”.
12:15 pm | Posted under Business, Community, Golden Gate Park, Green, Schools | 7 comments
Apr-29-2014

Internet Archive installs 100th “archivist statue”; will rebuild building lost in fire


The archivist statues in the Internet Archive. On the far left is Rick Prelinger, with
Brewster Kahle to the right. Photo by Michael Grecco Productions

If you’ve ever been to an event in the large auditorium at the Internet Archive at Funston and Clement, you’ve likely seen the unique sculptures scattered among the old church pews. The sculptures are representations of archivists or staff members that work at the Internet Archive.

The idea came from the IA’s founder, Brewster Kahle, who on a trip to China was impressed with the Terracotta Warriors depicting the armies of Qin Shi Huang, the first Emperor of China in Xian. When he returned to the US, he commissioned artist Nuala Creed to start making sculptures representing individuals who had dedicated at least three years of service to the Archive.

Recently, the 100th sculpture was completed and installed in the auditorium. Among the collection is founder Brewster Kahle as well as Rick Prelinger, the man behind the “Lost Landscapes of San Francisco” films.

Artist Creed says that even after creating 100 of the sculptures, it’s still “a challenge to convey the individual”:

“I love this commission, it allows me to do what I love, to create figures in clay. The Ceramic Archivists are hand-built, each figure is unique. I work from a photograph of the person, and a brief statement as to their interests. As I build the figure it is almost as though I am getting to know that person. Many of the figures are holding something, a coffee cup, book, cell phone, plate of cookies, knitting, a laptop etc. which personalizes them,” Creed says on the project website.

In November 2013, the Internet Archive lost part of its building to an electrical fire which also badly damaged a neighboring apartment building and its restaurant tenant on the ground floor, Taishan Cafe. Demolition of the damaged office space has been completed and word on the street is that the Internet Archive does plan to rebuild. We have not heard if Taishan will reopen in the future.

Sarah B.


The burned portion of the Internet Archive building on Clement that will be rebuilt.

5:02 am | Posted under Art, Business | 3 comments
Apr-21-2014

New parklet opens outside Simple Pleasures on outer Balboa

The Richmond District’s second parklet opened on Saturday in front of Simple Pleasures Cafe at 3434 Balboa near 35th Avenue. The budget for the parklet was $26,000, one of the most expensive in the city to date.

Unlike most city parklets, this one is spacious. Because the parking on that block of Balboa is slanted, the parklet is much deeper than a typical one. It took over 3 parking spaces in total.

Designed by San Francisco’s Step 3 Studio, the parklet is well constructed with heavy, stained wood benches and planters, and tile flooring.

The parklet was paid for by Simple Pleasures Cafe but the space is considered public, and open to anyone to use at anytime. Parklets are part of the San Francisco Planning Department’s Pavement to Parks initiative, designed to “temporarily reclaim unused swathes of land and quickly and inexpensively turn them into new public spaces”.

Next up is a parklet outside Cinderella Bakery on Balboa near 6th Avenue. No word yet on when though.

Sarah B.

5:02 am | Posted under Business, Parks | 24 comments
Apr-15-2014

Local links: Sand art, McCoppin grant, SFBG plant sale, 911 bravery & more


Inside the art studio of Jay Mercado at 10th & California. Photo by Jay Mercado

Lots of links to catch up on – enjoy! – Sarah B.

  • This Wednesday night is the general membership meeting for the Planning Association for the Richmond, also open to the public. Agenda items include a SFPUC Presentation about a proposed 4-year increase to water and sewer rates, and discussion of the recently released Urban Forest Plan for San Francisco. 7pm-9pm at the Richmond Recreation Center, 251 18th Avenue.
  • Sand art will abound on Saturday morning at Ocean Beach when artist Andres Amador returns to create his masterpieces on the shore. He’s being filmed for a documentary from 7:30am to 9am, so grab a spot on the Cliff House overlook and watch him at work. And if you want to learn his sand art technique, Amador has a workshop class on May 5.
  • Speaking of the Cliff House… The Chronicle took a look back at the “rollicking tale of the first Cliff House – a clapboard structure built by real estate tycoon Charles Butler in 1863.” One of the early visitors was author Mark Twain, who wrote, “The wind was cold and benumbing. It came straight from the ocean, and I think there are icebergs out there somewhere. True, there was not much dust, because the wind blew it all to Oregon in two minutes.”
  • Local art lovers, mark your calendars. The next Cabrillo Art Cave will take place on May 10 & 11 from 11am to 4pm at 925 Cabrillo. The cave is a community art space (read: someone’s garage) that opens occasionally for shows featuring a collective of local artists. Find out whose work will be showcased at cabrilloart.com
  • A new study shows that the median rent in San Francisco in the first quarter of 2014 was $3,200, approximately 8% higher than this time last year. In the Richmond District, we’re below the median at $2,695, but that’s still 14.6% higher than Q1 2013.
  • Frank McCoppin Elementary School (651 6th Avenue) learned in March that they’ll be receiving a $425,000 Kellogg Foundation grant, which is awarded to schools to optimize child development. The money will be used to implement a Balanced Literacy Program for the school, which has 265 students, about half of whom speak Cantonese as their first language.
  • Dirty Trix Saloon at 408 Clement shut down but has already reopened as Side Bar, “a remodeled drinking hole with more of a lounge feel than its previous incarnation. Multiple flat-screen TVs and a revamped sound system are part of the improvements,” says EaterSF.
  • Want to start growing vegetables in your backyard? Attend the free “Growing Vegetables from Seeds” class at the Richmond Branch Library (351 9th Avenue) on Saturday, May 3 from 2:30 to 4pm. Master Gardener Michael Klein will guide attendees through soil and bed preparation, propagation, planting techniques and plant maintenance.
  • In other gardening news, the SF Botanical Garden will have its 47th annual plant sale on Saturday, May 3 from 10am until 2pm, featuring over 20,000 plants. This year’s theme is drought tolerance hundreds of beautiful natives, succulents, and plants perfect for SF’s many micro-climates are for sale. If you’ve got a green thumb, don’t miss it!
  • 10 year old Dante Parker was honored by the city for his bravery while making a 911 call from his Richmond District home earlier this year, when his mother was experiencing severe abdominal pain. His mother made a full recovery from her stomach virus, and Dante said he was just “glad I helped. If I hadn’t helped, who would take care of me?” Aww. You can listen to it below.

11:32 am | Posted under Art, Business, Classes, Events, Green, Ocean Beach, Real Estate, Schools | 1 comment
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