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A Glen Park Extravaganza
Kids can paint a mural, adults can browse the arts and crafts booths, and everyone will dance in the streets at the Glen Park Neighborhood Festival, set for Sunday, Sept. 26.
The fourth annual street fair will feature live music by Brenda Boykin and Home Cookin', of the Boom Boom Room, and by Soul Sauce, regulars at the Union and Fillmore street fairs. Also on tap: appearances by the San Francisco Mounted Police, the SGI-USA Women's Taiko Group, and the dogs of the San Francisco SPCA.
Sponsored by the Glen Park Neighborhood Association, the festival raises money to send disadvantaged kids to Silver Tree Day Camp, which has been held in Glen Canyon Park since 1941. (Cool factoid: The park has one of only two free-running streams left in the city.) Last year's event funded 75 scholarships. Organizers are shooting to double that number this year.
And if you're feeling lucky (or generous), buy a raffle ticket for a chance to win a preview performance of a play at the American Conservatory Theatre, dinner at Sunny Jim's, a tour of Hearst Castle, or a cruise on the Bay.
The event runs from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. along Diamond Street from Bosworth to Chenery streets.
Ministry Makes History
It's loaded with old photographs, newspaper clippings, athletic medals, and recipes, but the Noe Valley Ministry's neighborhood timeline won't be finished until Sunday, Sept. 12, when the community is invited to add more goodies to the 3-D billboard.
The timeline will be the centerpiece of a daylong celebration marking the Ministry building's 111th year in Noe Valley. It has seven strands -- families, the church, the neighborhood, the city, the state, the nation, and the globe. Organizers hope residents will bring momentos and memories -- old interchurch basketball league jerseys, a program from the time Joan Baez sang at the church -- to attach to the exhibit.
"We'd like the neighborhood to help us tell the stories the building would -- if the building could talk," says Rev. Keenan Kelsey, pastor of the church, which has a 55-member Presbyterian congregation. "It's an opportunity for the community to create a joyful, living expression of the common good and the common ground we share as neighbors."
Besides the timeline, the celebration will include a musical jam session, a potluck lunch, and an exchange of gardening know-how and plant cuttings, complete with information from the San Francisco League of Urban Gardeners.
The event runs from noon to 3 p.m. at the Noe Valley Ministry, 1021 Sanchez St. Call 282-2317 for inspiration.
Dancing -- from Scottish country to hip-hop -- is happening at three venues in and around the neighborhood this month.
For anybody in the mood for swing dancing, a class for couples and singles will be held Fridays at 7 p.m. at Bethany United Methodist Church (1268 Sanchez St. at Clipper) Sept. 10 through Oct. 15. All experience levels are welcome to the 90-minute sessions taught by Rev. Linda Kelly, whose ministry focuses on the spirituality of dance. The six-week course costs $40 for singles, $80 for couples (lesbian, gay, transgendered, and bisexual welcome). To register or get more information, call 647-8393.
Jigs, reels, and strathspeys are some of the Scottish country dances that will be taught at the Noe Valley Ministry (1021 Sanchez St.) starting Sept. 16 at 8 p.m. Members of the San Francisco Scottish Country Dancers will teach two simultaneous classes -- one for beginners and one for returning dancers. For a taste of this lively dance form, you might want to check out the Scottish Country Dance Party set for Sept. 9 at 8 p.m. at the Ministry. The cost is $2, and wear flat shoes. For more information, call Susie Langdon Kass at 333-9372.
And over at Dance Mission at 3316 24th St., corner of Mission Street, you are invited to Five-Dollar Day, Sept. 11 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. It's a chance to sample some of the dance studio's fall offerings, from ballet and tap to hip-hop and samba. The cost is $5. For kids, Noe Valley storytellers Mark Baum and Laura McHale Holland will be on hand all day. For more information, call 826-4441.
A Chance to Do Good
If you've been thinking about volunteering for a good cause, your options are about to expand. Three agencies are looking for help.
The 30th Street Senior Center has openings for volunteers to serve lunch to the more than 200 seniors who dine at the center every weekday. Volunteer hours run 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and are flexible. The center is at 225 30th St. near Dolores. For more information, call volunteer coordinator Kim Longenecker at 550-2214.
San Francisco's Department of Animal Care and Control has put out a call for volunteers to walk dogs, pet cats, hug hamsters, or kiss bunnies. The efforts, which take place at the city shelter at 1200 15th St. at Harrison, help socialize the animals, making them more adoptable. For more information, call 554-9414 or visit the department's web site: www.ci.sf.ca.us/acc.
The nonprofit agency Health at Home hopes to attract new volunteers who want to give care and support to people with chronic, life-threatening illnesses such as HIV/AIDS, cancer, and heart disease. The agency, which operates under the umbrella of the city's Health Department, will be training new volunteers to provide practical and emotional support, run errands, provide transportation, give respite care, and do massage. The 12-hour training course runs Sept. 13 to 16 at Health at Home's offices, 45 Onondaga St. at Alemany Boulevard. For more information, call Pat Bregant at 452-2161.
Cheap Books for Sale
The Friends & Foundation of the San Francisco Public Library hopes to sell more than 100,000 new and used books during its 35th annual book sale, Sept. 9 to 12, at Fort Mason Center.
Proceeds will benefit the entire public library system, including the Noe Valley Sally Brunn Branch on Jersey Street.
To be a book booster, stop by the sale from 2 to 4 p.m. (members only) or 4 to 8 p.m. ($15 admission) on Thursday, Sept. 9; or from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, when admission is free. Fort Mason is located at the foot of Buchanan Street opposite the Marina Safeway, and has great Muni access and "ample free parking."
Every child 8 or younger will receive a copy of Alejandro's Gift, by Richard E. Albert, courtesy of Chronicle Books. And on the last day of the sale, Sunday, Sept. 12, all books are $1 or less.
Parks Look to Ballot Box
Park advocates have taken to the streets in their campaign for better parks, recreation, and open space. Acting swiftly after the Board of Supervisors declined to support a parks initiative sponsored by Supervisor Gavin Newsom, the Committee for Better Parks is gathering signatures to place a charter amendment on the March 2000 ballot.
According to campaign organizers, the measure would protect the parks and recreation budget, allowing it to be cut only at the same rate as other city departments. They also say secure funding is the best way to keep the city's park facilities safe and well maintained.
With backing from Coleman Advocates for Children and Youth, San Francisco Beautiful, SPUR, SLUG, and the Sierra Club, among others, the Committee is now looking for 600 volunteers to help collect the 60,000 signatures needed to qualify for a charter amendment. The group will offer training sessions and tee shirts for all volunteers and a large reward for the top signature gatherer. If you're interested, call 551-2572.
This month's Short Takes were written by Mark Robinson, Jeanne Alexander, and Sally Smith.