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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.

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 9:50 am | Posted under Business, Kids, Sports | 5 comments

Memorial Day ceremony at USS SF Monument at Land’s End, Sunday

A 1937 photo of the crew aboard the USS San Francisco. Courtesy of USS SF Memorial Foundation

This Sunday from 12noon until 1:30pm, the USS San Francisco Memorial Foundation will host a special ceremony in honor of Memorial Day.

The USS San Francisco Memorial Park is located at Lands End, in the parking lot below Fort Miley (map).

The monument is located in the parking lot and is “dedicated to the 100 Sailors and 7 Marines killed in action during the Naval Battle of Guadalcanal 12/13 November 1942, and to all the men who served, fought and perished during the 17 major battles in which this heavy cruiser participated during World War II, from 7 December 1941 at Pearl Harbor, to the last battle at Okinawa, and the surrender of Japan on 2 September 1945.”

In 1942, the USS San Francisco was the first Navy warship to receive the Presidential Unit Citation from Franklin D. Roosevelt.

The ceremony will last about and hour and 20 minutes. Band music, provided by the U.S. Naval Sea Cadets “Band of the West”, commences at 11:30am. Complimentary Peet’s Coffee and home made cookies and cakes will be available at 11am, provided by the Presidio Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution.

Sarah B.

Footage from the ceremonies in 2011 and 2010:

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 7:29 pm | Posted under Events | 2 comments

Suspicious package reported and cleared at Safeway on 7th & Cabrillo

SFPD arrived at the parking lot of Safeway at 7th avenue and Cabrillo around 4:45on Friday afternoon after receiving a report of a suspicious package.

The intersection of 7th and Cabrillo was closed off to traffic, as well as blocks along Cabrillo and 7th Avenue leading up to the intersection. Residents in homes that faced the Safeway parking lot on 7th Avenue were advised to evacuate.

Around 6pm, a bomb-sniffing German Shepherd arrived on the scene and quickly determined that the package was not dangerous. After its handler walked the dog around to sniff remaining cars in the parking lot, the lot and surrounding intersections were re-opened.

The SFPD Bomb Squad was on the scene and described the package as a “military ordinance container” with “explosive markings” on it. The package was found to be empty.

Many Safeway shoppers on foot were turned away from the store during the closure, and some residents headed for nearby coffee shops to wait it out. But overall, neighbors were calm and understanding of the inconvenience.

“I was all ready to go home and start my laundry but I’ll guess I’ll just go walk up and down Geary for a bit,” one resident said.

Sarah B.

A bomb-sniffing dog inspects vehicles in the parking lot.

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 6:48 pm | Posted under Crime | 7 comments

Police Blotter: May 23, 2014

[Reprinted from The Richmond Police Station Newsletter of May 23, 2014. To be added to the station's mailing list, email sfpd.richmond.station@sfgov.org.]

This year’s Bay to Breakers race was relatively uneventful in the Richmond District in large part because the officers in the field took early action to prevent things from getting out of hand. They poured out gallons and gallons of alcohol being illegally consumed in public. One person was cited for selling bottles of beer out of plastic coolers. Four people were arrested for public intoxication. Several citations were issued for violations like public urination, littering and drinking in public. One intoxicated young man climbed into the bison paddock in Golden Gate Park clad only in a poncho and naked from the waist down. This exposed him to arrest for public intoxication and for disturbing animals in the park.

On June 25th at 5:30 pm the Police Commission will hold a public meeting in the Richmond District at Presidio Middle School (450 30th Ave). This is an opportunity for the commissioners to hear directly from residents of the district. I will also give a brief report about Richmond Station. This takes the place of our regular monthly community meeting, so we will not meet on June 17th as we usually would.

On 05/16/14 at 6pm, officers were called to a report of a male attempting to break into a residence on the 100 block of Anza St. The victim was reporting that he had caught a male climbing through the window of his residence. The victim called 911 and provided a description and direction of the suspect. The victim was also able to follow him for a short distance. Officers responded to the scene and located and detained the suspect on Anza at Cook St. As the officers were attempting to handcuff the suspect, he suddenly pulled away and fled on foot east on Anza St. Officers pursued the suspect and found him in a residence on the 200 block of Anza St. In the suspect’s possession were items that had been taken in a burglary on the 400 block of Anza the week before. The suspect also had an outstanding warrant for his arrest. The 55yr old male was charged with attempted burglary, resisting arrest causing injury to an officer and possession of stolen property. One of the officers was injured during the pursuit and was taken to a hospital by ambulance. Several citizens came to the officer’s aid and stood by with him until assistance arrived.

On 05/17/14 at 7pm officers went to a call of a theft on the 900 block of Clement St. The employee pointed out the suspect, who was detained by the officers. The employee told the officers that she saw the suspect pick up a phone that was secured by a cable to the display. Believing the suspect was going to steal the phone she went over and confronted him. At that time another employee came in the store and recognized the suspect from thefts from two other phone stores. The officer located a pair of wire cutters in the suspect’s pants pocket. He was also in possession of narcotics. The 43yr old male was charged with attempted burglary, possession of burglary tools and narcotic violations.

Between 04/19/14 and 04/20/14 on the 400 block of 33rd Ave, a vehicle was parked in the garage of an apartment building. The victim had mistakenly left the window of her vehicle open and when she returned her iPad had been taken. Surveillance video was available and provided to the Inspector a short time later. Officers from Richmond Station viewed the video and were able to immediately identify the suspect. On 05/17/14 at 11:40pm, officers located the suspect at Geary and 20th Ave and took him into custody. The 46yr old male was charged with the burglary and a probation violation.

On 05/18/14 at 3:55pm, officers responded to a call of a male with a knife on the 2600 block of Sacramento St. The suspect had fled prior to the officer’s arrival. The victim reported that the suspect, whom she knows, was in front of her home as she arrived. She waited around the corner and began to walk home thinking the suspect had left. As she turned the corner, she ran into the suspect who then prevented her from getting into her home. She asked for help from a passerby, but the suspect brandished a knife and chased the passerby away. The victim was able to get into her building at this time. After the officers left the scene the suspect returned and forced entry into the building. The victim was no longer home. The officers searched the building and found the suspect hiding in a closet of the victims’ home. The 18yr old was charged with aggravated assault, burglary, false imprisonment, vandalism and stalking.

On 05/21/14 at 2pm, the victim was walking north on 40th Ave towards Anza St. She was suddenly confronted by a male who yelled at her “Where are you from!!??” The victim said she thought he was a crazy person and kept walking. The suspect again confronted her and yelled “Where are you from?” The victim answered him and with that the suspect grabbed her by the arms and tried to throw her to the ground but was unsuccessful. He grabbed her backpack from her shoulders and found her cell phone in the side pocket. The victim pleaded for the return of her property and at this time a passerby approached and said she was calling the police. The suspect then dropped the victim’s property and went into a house on the 500 block of 40th Ave. The victim and witness left the immediate area and saw the suspect then leave on a skateboard, south on 40th Ave. The investigation continued and the victim was able to identify the suspect through a photo lineup. Officers returned to the area and located the suspect and took him into custody. The 29yr old male was charged with robbery and battery.

On 05/22/14 at 5:40pm, officers responded to a call of an assault with a vehicle on the 500 block of 34th Ave. The suspect and victim were both on scene when the officers arrived. The victim told the officers that he had just parked his vehicle and was walking away when he noticed a car backing out of the driveway behind his car. The driver appeared to be having difficulty making the maneuver so the victim went back to his car to move it. He told the suspect he would move his car and an argument ensued. As the victim opened the driver’s side door, the suspect completed backing out, moved forward and drove forward hitting the open door and pinning the victim between the door and the suspect’s vehicle. The suspect then reversed and the victim stood in front of the suspect’s vehicle preventing him from leaving until officers arrived on scene. The 60yr old male was charged with aggravated assault. The victim was uninjured.

On 05/22/14 at 7:20pm, officers were called to a burglary in progress on the 700 block of 35th Ave. The caller reported seeing the suspect with a crowbar breaking into a home. When officers arrived they could see that the front door was pried and the door was ajar, but the chain was affixed on the inside. Officers announced their presence and were preparing to kick in the door when the suspect opened it. The officers detained the male and continued to search the home. The officers located the female suspect inside. The male suspect told the officers that he broke into the house to gain “squatters rights.” The owner of the residence was contacted and confirmed that the house was not abandoned, and was currently undergoing repairs. The two suspects, a 29yr old male and a 21yr old female were charged with burglary, vandalism, possession of burglary tools and a narcotic violation.

On 05/16/14, between 6:30am and 10pm on the 1400 block of Broderick, a suspect entered a flat by unknown means and took a laptop.

Between 05/17/14, 5pm and 05/19/14, 7:30am on the 2700 block of California St, a suspect entered a play yard and damaged play structures and planters. The suspect also took the American and California flags.

On 05/17/14 between 8:30pm and 11:30pm the area around the Golden Gate Park Golf Course was damaged by graffiti. The suspect(s) also damaged a satellite dish and took a security camera.

On 05/19/14, between 8:30am and 8:30pm on the 800 block of 29th Ave, a suspect entered a multi-unit garage and took a bike. There were no signs of forced entry.

On 05/20/14 at 12:10am, the victim was walking on the 2400 block of Post St. He saw the suspects run towards him from across the street, one of whom was armed with a handgun. The suspects told him to give up his bag and the victim complied. They then told the victim to run for his life, which he did. The suspects were described as two black males, one wearing a ski mask and a black hooded sweatshirt. The other had on white tennis shoes and black hooded sweatshirt. The loss was his bag which contained his phone and wallet.

On 05/20/14 at 1:15am, officers went to the 500 block of 47th Ave on a call of someone trying to break into a home. The caller was reporting that the female was knocking at her back door. The suspect also damaged the fence in the backyard. Officers detained the female who said that she had heard voices on the roof calling for help so she climbed up there. She also said that she was being chased and a boy was being cut in the attic. Officers determined that the female, who did not live in the area, was under the influence of narcotics. She also sustained an ankle injury when she jumped from the roof. The 29yr old was taken to the hospital for treatment.

On 05/20/14 at 4:20am, a resident on the 8200 block of Geary heard his garage door opening. When he went down to check, he observed the suspect walking away from his house as soon as he saw the victim. The victim attempted to follow him but lost sight of the suspect as he went into Sutro Park. When the victim went home he checked his car which was parked in front of his house. He saw that his garage remote along with his headphones and sunglasses were missing from his vehicle, which he said he forgot to lock. There was nothing missing from his garage. The suspect was a white male wearing a dark parka type jacket, a black baseball cap and black pants.

Between 05/20/14, 4pm and 05/21/14, 6:45am on the 2800 block of Jackson, a suspect entered a home under construction by a garage door. The suspect then entered the main living area and pried open locked tool boxes and took numerous tools.

On 05/20/14 at 9:13pm, the victim was walking on Masonic southbound towards Geary. She felt someone bump her shoulder and when she turned around she saw the suspect standing there. Knowing she was about to get robbed she ran out into the middle of the street, screaming, trying to get anyone’s attention. The suspect was yelling at the victim to get back over to the sidewalk and get on the ground. At this point the suspect pulled out a handgun and pointed it at her. She returned to the sidewalk and the suspect grabbed her arm and pulled her to the ground. The suspect took her backpack and items from her pockets. He then fled in an unknown direction. He was described as a black male, wearing a black ski mask, black sweatshirt and black pants.

On 05/23/14 at 4:17am, officers went on a call of an alarm on the unit block of Arguello. As they searched the exterior of the home, they saw that a door had pried open. A walk through of the interior was done, however it appeared the suspect was scared away when the alarm went off. The house is currently under construction and the contractor who did respond confirmed that nothing had been taken.

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 11:52 am | Posted under Crime | Add comments

Only in San Francisco: Naked photobomber at the Bay to Breakers

Bay to Breakers participant photos were posted yesterday and reader Fidel got quite a surprise when he went in to look at his gallery of pics.

Unbeknownst to him, he got photobombed by a nude runner in Golden Gate Park.

Yup, that pretty much epitomizes the Bay to Breakers.

Sarah B.

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 5:02 am | Posted under Photos | 5 comments

Residential fire at 24th & California quickly extinguished Wednesday night

Firefighters approach the roof of the building as flames come out from the attic. Photo by David H.

Around 8:30pm on Wednesday night, a fire broke out in the top floor of a two story, residential building on the northeast corner of 24th Avenue and California.

Crews from nearby fire stations 31 and 14 (12th & Geary, 26th & Geary) responded to the blaze, which had firefighters climbing up to the roof to attack the flames. The fire started in the second floor and spread to the attic. Flames were visible from the street.

Cub reporter David H. lives nearby and said “I first heard the fire, then I smelled it.”

California between 23rd and 25th Avenues was closed to automobile traffic and MUNI buses were diverted over to Lake or Clement Streets to continue their routes.

Several residents from the building were evacuated, but are expected to return to the building this evening. Medics were on scene but no one required medical attention.

The cause of the fire is not yet known.

Sarah B.

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 9:42 pm | Posted under Fire | 3 comments

Photo: Coyote spotting at Lands End

A coyote near the Lands End trail, May 19, 2014. Photo by @goldendenizen

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 5:05 am | Posted under Photos, Wildlife | 10 comments

Photo: Students “lay down” at Ocean Beach to support clean oceans

Photo by Kevin Lozaw via The California Coast

On Tuesday afternoon, over 800 students from San Francisco and Marin schools in grades 2 through 7 came together on Ocean Beach for a cleanup project.

Afterwards, the students laid down in formation to form a Western Grebe bird diving after a fish, with the word “Only One Ocean” above it, to highlight the need to protect the world’s oceans.

The Western Grebe was depicted because their populations have been in decline and are at risk of entanglement by discarded fishing line and abandoned fishing gear.

The cleanup and photo event was organized by Richardson Bay Audubon Center & Sanctuary in Tiburon, and sponsored by the California Coastal Commission with support from the Whale Tail License Plate Fund. Five other similar cleanups are taking place up and down the California coast.

Thanks to reader Luna T. for the tip.

Sarah B.

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 5:26 pm | Posted under Ocean Beach, Photos | 4 comments