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Archive for the ‘Recreation’ Category

Dec-23-2013

New Yoga Tree on 6th Ave opens Friday; first weekend of classes free

On Friday, Yoga Tree’s ninth studio will open at 182 6th Avenue, just off California Street.

The studio will offer over 25 classes per week of Vinyasa, Hatha, Pre and Postnatal yoga starting on Friday, December 27th.

The first weekend of classes is free to all students, December 27-29. We haven’t been able to find a class schedule online yet, but keep an eye on the website for more information.

The space was formerly home to Brighton Beach Antiques but has been vacant for many years. The interior has been remodeled and features a small reception area and a single workout room, which looks like it will accommodate about 20 people per class.

Yoga Tree offers a variety of rates and packages, ranging from an introductory offer of $20 for 3 classes, 10 and 20 class packs, up to a monthly pass (31 classes max) for $190. Classes can be taken at any of their 9 locations in the Bay Area. You can also just drop-in for a class; rates range from $12 to $18.

Classes can be booked online in advance.

Welcome to the neighborhood, Yoga Tree!

Sarah B.

UPDATE: Yoga Tree confirmed that it is only the first weekend of classes that will be free, December 27-29.

5:02 am | Posted under Business, Recreation | 1 comment
Oct-11-2013

Local links: govt shutdown ills, new dance studio, Elmo in prison, Calder’s Big Crinkly & more


Photo by
phoca2004

Happy Friday to everyone! Here are some local links to take you into what we hope is a great weekend. – Sarah B.

  • How is the #govtshutdown affecting the Richmond District? Aside from places like Baker Beach and Lands End being “closed” (well at least their parking lots are…), the legendary Cliff House, which is a National Park Service concessionaire, was ordered to close. They did, but then re-opened in defiance, only to be re-ordered to close on Tuesday night. And in other killjoy news, the annual LEAP Sandcastle Contest on Ocean Beach was postponed because their permit for Ocean Beach was deemed invalid during the shutdown.
  • The new “puzzle-like” condos (6 units total) on the corner of California and 4th Avenue were featured in the October issue of San Francisco Magazine. The architect Owen Kennerly referred to the former smog station lot as a sort of “no man’s land” that challenged him. “The real question, then, Kennerly says, was “How bold do you get?” The eventual answer: pretty damn bold. “We stepped up to that threshold and went beyond it,” he says.”
  • Up for an urban adventure/scavenger hunt? Get Lost is hosting the Land’s End Street Scramble on Monday, November 11 (Veteran’s Day). Visit checkpoints in any order, and answer a simple question to prove you were there. Those who score the most are the winners! You can race for 90 minutes or 3 hours, and all levels are welcome.
  • New Century Hair Design at 6209 Geary near 26th Avenue is closing their doors after 20+ years in business. Reader Steve tells us that the business, owned by two local women, is closing down because the landlord won’t renew their lease. “Big loss for the neighborhood and the hundreds of regular clients that have been going their for years,” Steve wrote. They’ll close at the end of October.
  • There’s a new children’s dance studio in the neighborhood – Ms. Marian’s Dance Garden located at 5841 Geary (above Thom’s Natural Foods). Ms. Marian offers performance oriented classes for boys & girls age 3-18 years, at all levels. Ms. Marian recently left the Richmond District YMCA, where she created the Children’s Dance Program and led it for 12 years.
  • Remember the angry guy in an Elmo suit that was causing a ruckus at Rossi Park last year? He was recently sentenced to a year in a New York prison after pleading guilty to attempted grand larceny and misdemeanor stalking in a plot to extort $2 million from the Girl Scouts.
  • While SFMOMA is closed, the de Young is displaying Alexander Calder’s Big Crinkly sculpture/mobile in their garden. Watch it being installed in the video below. In other cross-museum news, the Legion of Honor will host a Matisse from SFMOMA exhibition starting November 9, featuring 23 paintings, sculptures, and works on paper from SFMOMA’s Matisse collection, alongside four paintings and drawings from the Fine Arts Museums’ holdings, and two works from private local collections.

5:12 am | Posted under Business, Crime, Kids, Ocean Beach, Politics, Recreation | 4 comments
Oct-2-2013

Local links: 5L, an art cave, Mysterious Rack opens, farmer’s mkt updates, Halloween hats, Sunday Streets & more


The Mysterious Rack’s second store at 12 Clement Street


Happy hump day Richmond District! Here are some local links to keep you humming.

  • A second location of the Mysterious Rack vintage clothing store is opening at 12 Clement Street this weekend (original location is at 3423 Balboa at 35th Ave). The store will host a grand opening party this Friday at 8pm, so stop in to check out their new digs. Both locations also offer alterations and tailoring services.
  • The new 5 Fulton Limited service pilot will begin at the end of October according to a recent progress report from the SFMTA (Sec. 2.2.2). The 5L would run during peak commute hours in the morning and evenings, Monday through Friday, and would make all stops from Ocean Beach to 6th Avenue, and then limited stops until from 6th Avenue until it reaches Van Ness Avenue. More info from a previous story.
  • Parking for the Clement St. Farmer’s Market just got a little easier, thanks to Roosevelt Middle School who will offer $5 parking in their school lot every Sunday from 8:30am until 3:30pm. Drive into the lot from Palm Ave. between Euclid and Geary, and you can access the farmer’s market on foot via the school’s Arguello gate. And for those of you wondering, the Farmer’s Market has been approved to continue every Sunday from 9am until 2pm until November 24, 2013 with a hearing for a further extension on October 24.
  • Need a great hat for your Halloween costume or looking for a great hat to BUILD your costume around? Check out the annual hat sale at Paul’s Hat Works at 6128 Geary, where you can pick up a vintage or costume hat for $1 – $80. They’re open Tuesday through Sunday from 10am until 6pm.
  • Got your dancing shoes on? Stop by Lincoln Park Presbyterian Church (417 31st Avenue) on the 3rd Friday of every month at 7pm for a family folk dance night. The fee is a sliding scale $5-$10 per family, and no experience is necessary. Dances are taught by an elementary school dance teacher.
  • Mark your calendars for our next Sunday Streets on October 27 which for the FIRST time will take place on Clement Street between Arguello and Funston (and on Arguello from Fulton to Clement; view map). Also during Sunday Streets, the Farmer’s Market will expand from 2 blocks to 4. The entire route will be closed off to cars to maximize care-free frolicking.
  • There’s a new “art cave” in the neighborhood (translation: garage converted into an impromptu art gallery). The Cabrillo Art Cave will have art and artisanal crafts for sale, and will be an opportunity for visitors to meet some local artists. They’ll be open this Friday through Sunday in conjunction with Hardly Strictly, so stop by 925 Cabrillo (between 10th and 11th Avenues) between 11am and 5pm to check it out. Not sure on hours after this weekend, but their website says “We open for nice weather and Events.”


The Cabrillo Art Cave, open on nice days at 925 Cabrillo

9:15 am | Posted under Art, Business, Events, Recreation | 1 comment
Sep-30-2013

Try your hand at lawn bowling! Open House in Golden Gate Park, Oct. 5

You’ve probably seen them when you’ve driven through the Golden Gate Park – adults dressed in pristine white clothes, hurling small, dense balls across smooth lawns. Some in v-neck sweaters with sharp-looking hats.

Wasn’t there a part of you that was just itching to join in?

Well here’s your chance! On Saturday, the San Francisco Lawn Bowling Club is hosting an open house at the club on Bowling Green Drive in Golden Gate Park. Stop by to learn how the game is played and try it for yourself.

The free open house runs from 10am until 4pm and takes place at the Lawn Bowling Club in Golden Gate Park (directions). Be sure to wear flat-soled shoes!

If Saturday doesn’t work for you, they also offer free lessons every Wednesday at 12noon (weather permitting).

Sarah B.

5:16 am | Posted under Events, Golden Gate Park, Recreation, Sports | Comments Off
Jul-31-2013

Ahoy mateys! Cabrillo Playground re-opening celebration is this Saturday


Photo by Friends of Cabrillo Playground

Cabrillo Playground has been closed since last September for remodeling, but this Saturday, it will re-open to the public with a grand celebration.

Stop by on Saturday from 12noon until 3pm to check out the renovated playground, located on 38th Avenue between Cabrillo and Fulton. The theme for the celebration is pirates, so dig out that shoulder parrot and wooden leg, and brush up on your pirate-speak.

The $4.5 million Cabrillo Playground project includes the renovation of the historic clubhouse – originally built in 1945 as a New Deal project – as well as a complete overhaul of the children’s play area, creating separate play areas for pre-school and school age children.

All of the sports courts – 1 tennis court and 1 1/2 basketball courts – have also been resurfaced in colorful materials.

Work was also done to the picnic area, paths were repaved, new lighting has been added, accessibility improved and new landscaping installed.

The seating walls in the new playground also feature donor recognition tiles, which the Friends of Cabrillo Playground spearheaded as a way to raise additional funds for the renovations.

Some of the funds went to purchase a Henge concrete ping pong table. At Saturday’s celebration, they’ll be hosting a Berlin-style ping pong demonstration.

Rec & Park will also have a climbing wall on site for the celebration along with other planned activities for kids, plus there will be live music and food.

It’s great to have another renovated playground in the neighborhood! Next up is Mountain Lake Park Playground, which is due for a $3.15 million renovation beginning in March 2015.

Sarah B.

10:18 am | Posted under Events, Kids, Recreation | 3 comments
May-31-2013

Richmond District winners in SFWeekly’s “Best of San Francisco 2013″ poll


The view at Lands End

We’re cross-eyed after reviewing the dozens of awards that SFWeekly handed out this week in their annual “Best of San Francisco” poll. Below are the local winners in the roundup – yay for the Richmond District!

Best Aquarium Turned Dance Floor: California Academy of Sciences
Every Thursday evening the museum converts into a makeshift discotheque, using its various rooms to host DJs pulled from the city’s best parties. Venture downstairs to Steinhart Aquarium, and, on select nights, you can dance next to a stunning variety of tropical fish. More

Best Funhouse: Buckshot (3848 Geary)
This bar and game room out in the Inner Richmond puts a whole new twist on the term “drinking games.” Forget the college classics like flip cup, beer pong or kings when you’re putting back the booze. Instead, travel back further into your childhood and play a slew of arcade games, including hipster favorite Big Buck Hunter. More


Skee ball at the Buckshot. Photo by Joey the Cat

Best Feat of Culinary Strength: The Challenge at Pho Garden (2109 Clement)
we’re probably not the best candidates to take The Challenge at Pho Garden, wherein contestants must eat 2 pounds of rice noodles, 2 pounds of combination beef and tripe, and 4 quarts of broth in less than an hour. More


Blogger Madison tries her luck with the Pho Challenge

Best Place to Get Lost: Mile Rock Beach
…with a little more effort on the Lands End hike – over 100 stairs, to be precise – it’s possible to find a place where on a foggy day not even Marin County across the water can be seen from a stretch of sand tucked in between cliffs west of the Golden Gate. More

Best Housing Metaphor: Golden Gate Park’s Tiny Door-in-a-Tree
Whether art project or public statement or another sad escapee from UCSF’s Super-Intelligent Squirrel Development Lab, the door attracted national attention before it got filled with trash, at which point the city intervened, citing (as always) some permitting thing. More


The mini door at the base of a tree in Golden Gate Park. Photos by Erica Reh

Best Amateur Historian: Woody LaBounty
The self-described “Big History Guy” — he is 6-foot-5 — is the executive director of the Western Neighborhoods Project and the keeper of the mesmerizing OutsideLands.org. If ever there were a more surefire way for a history-minded San Franciscan to blow an afternoon perusing amazing old photos and reading insightful essays than visiting this site, we haven’t found it yet.

Best Place for a Mani/Pedi: Aqua Spa (14 Clement)
Before your toes hit the water, the friendly staff offers you tea, puts a warm wrap around your shoulders, and turns on the massage chair. There’s an endless supply of tabloid magazines, but there’s a good chance you’ll never get to that Brangelina story, because they do foot and hand massages that are so relaxing it’s hard to concentrate on celebrity gossip. More

Best Place to Take Small Kids on a Bike Ride:
Ocean Beach Promenade

…there’s no better place, day-in and day-out to pedal along with the wee ones than the flat, forgiving terrain of the Ocean Beach promenade. More

Best Hike to Ruins of an Astronomical Observatory: Summit of Strawberry Hill, Golden Gate Park
You won’t find strawberries atop Strawberry Hill anymore. Nor will you find the Sweeny Observatory, a grand, castle-like structure erected in 1891. Sepia-toned photos reveal a wondrous, circular structure sprouting atop the hill and reflected in Stow Lake. More


The Sweeny Observatory atop Strawberry Hill lay in ruins after the quake of 1906. Photo courtesy of calisphere

Best Marathon Sporting Development Battle: Beach Chalet Soccer Fields
After five years of wrangling and approval by four city agencies, the state’s Coastal Commission finally approved proposed Astroturf fields under 60-foot light towers on the far west of Golden Gate Park. It was a long and odd road; a city document actually argued that the turf-and-lights plan was best because the area had fallen prey to “undesirable uses such as camping and sexual activity.” Turf opponents claimed that artificial grass conflicted with the natural state of a park created atop rolling sand dunes. Barring legal redress, the turf and lights are coming. Whether the camping and sex go away remains to be seen.

Reader’s Poll Winners
Best Museum: De Young
Best Music Festival: Hardy Strictly Bluegrass
Best Hike: Land’s End
Best Park: Golden Gate Park


A conceptual, overhead rendering of the four renovated fields at Beach Chalet

5:08 am | Posted under Business, Food, Golden Gate Park, Museums, Ocean Beach, Parks, Recreation | 7 comments
May-9-2013

Beach Chalet soccer field renovation project approved by Coastal Commission


A conceptual, overhead rendering of the four renovated fields at Beach Chalet

It was early 2010 when we first heard about the plans to renovate the Beach Chalet soccer fields in Golden Gate Park. The City Fields Foundation, in conjunction with the City, proposed to fund a new soccer center at the existing site that would convert the playing fields to artificial turf, add lighting, renovate the restrooms, add a small playground, repave the parking area, and erect new fencing and seating areas for spectators.

The goal? More playing time for kids and adults. The proposed improvements would bring all four fields into use year-round and provide expanded hours into the early evening. Currently, the Beach Chalet fields can host 4,738 hours of annual play. The proposed renovations would add 9,582 hours of new play each year for both soccer and lacrosse players.

The process for approvals started off well for the project. In April 2011, the renovation was green-lighted by the Rec & Park Commission after nearly three hours of public comments from both sides of the issue. But this is San Francisco after all, so by May, Rec & Park bowed to the pressure of community groups and required City Fields Foundation to provide a full environmental impact report.

Opponents of the project raised concerns about the environmental impact that the replacement soccer center would have. How would birds be impacted by the new lights? Would light pollution from the lights ruin the sky for stargazers? What kinds of toxins are in artificial fields and will it harm children and animals? Why aren’t they using natural grass instead?

The process has dragged on and on, with appeal after appeal. And despite the plan being approved by the Planning Commission, the Recreation and Park Commission, the Board of Supervisors (nearly unanimous vote – that NEVER happens!) and the city’s Board of Appeals, the opponents made one last ditch effort to block the project by appealing to the Coastal Commission (a narrow slice of Golden Gate Park, which includes the fields, is within the coastal zone, which the commission oversees).

Today was the hearing and dozens of supporters and opponents turned out to voice their opinion to the commission, each given their 2 minutes to speak their mind.

One Richmond District parent, Jim Morris, took time off work to speak his support for the project at the Commission meeting in Marin. He arrived at 10am, spoke at 11:30am, and said when he left, they had nearly three more hours of testimony lined up.

Morris plays soccer in Golden Gate Park in his adult league, and his young daughter plays in a youth league. He said he supports the Beach Chalet fields renovation because there just aren’t enough soccer fields available in the city.

“My daughter’s team usually practices in the outfield of a baseball field. I have to protect them from baseballs coming at them from neighboring teams,” he said.

Morris said he has played games on the Crocker-Amazon fields, which were converted to turf by the City Fields Foundation in a previous project.

“Those fields are great to play on, and there’s such a great vibe in the community around that park since they went in.”

By the end of today’s meeting, the Coastal Commission agreed with what all the other city agencies have already stated – that the project should move forward – by unanimously voting to uphold the permit for Beach Chalet renovation.

And we’re really glad. We think there’s probably lots of kids and parents that will be cheering tonight about it too.

Sarah B.


An overhead view showing the renovated parking, playground and seating area.


Instead of tall bleachers, an 18-inch raised walkway featuring built-in spectator
benches runs across the center of the fields.

4:08 pm | Posted under Golden Gate Park, Recreation, Sports | 44 comments
Jan-7-2013

Lands End’s “Eagles Point” overlook up next for renovations; info event Saturday


A drawing of the new Eagles Point lookout; the current platform (inset)

One of our favorite lookouts in the neighborhood is from Eagles Point, at the entrance to Lands End near 32nd Avenue and El Camino. It’s a spectacular overlook of Baker Beach and the grand Golden Gate Bridge.

The Parks Conservancy and National Park Service are in the early stages of design for a new and improved lookout that would be located a bit further down the trail. Other planned improvements include stabilizing the trail, improving its surface, and removing unsafe or diseased trees.

This project will replace the existing deteriorated viewing platform with a new view point. The new view point will be accessible, easier to maintain, and set back within the trail alignment. The view point design includes benches for sitting and enjoying views of the Golden Gate. A small concrete curb will protect the viewpoint’s outer edge. Non-native, invasive trees will be removed from the viewshed. The trail to the new viewpoint will be resurfaced and regraded to meet The Draft Final Accessibility Guidelines for Outdoor Developed Areas (AGODA) standards. Native vegetation will be planted in areas disturbed by tree and overlook removal and adjacent to the new viewpoint.

Stop by the current Eagles Point trailhead this Saturday, January 12 at 10am to check out the designs for the new lookout, and to ask any questions you have about the project. Or visit the project website for more information, or download the plan (PDF).

Work is scheduled to begin in Fall 2013.

Sarah B.

5:33 am | Posted under Lands End, Parks, Recreation | 4 comments
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