Noe Valley Voice October 2007

Short Takes

By Erin O'Briant

Toe-Tapping Fundraiser for Senior Center

The On Lok 30th Street Senior Center is holding its annual "Autumn Magic" dinner-dance fundraiser on Saturday, Oct. 27, from 5:30 to 10:30 p.m. The evening, which will take place at El Patio Español, 2850 Alemany Boulevard, includes dinner, dancing, a raffle, and a chance to support the 4,500 seniors who receive services at the center at 225 30th Street.

For the three-course dinner, guests will have a choice of steak, salmon, or a vegetarian entrée, says development officer Dave Baker. He notes that the raffle features some hot items, such as two round-trip airline tickets and a weekend away. Deejay Wild Nights will spin mostly Latin tunes, while dancers show off their dance technique and give salsa lessons.

Tickets are $65 per person. Baker says the event usually raises about $15,000, and attendance numbers around 250 people. Funds raised will benefit the senior center's health and social programs, classes, meals, and other services. To order tickets or for more information, call the 30th Street Senior Center at 550-2223.

Tails Wag at Dogtoberfest

Pooches will be panting to attend Dogtoberfest, a fundraiser organized by Friends of Upper Douglass Park to raise money for park improvements. The fest is scheduled for Saturday, Oct. 27, from 11 a.m. until 2 p.m., at Upper Douglass dog park, 27th and Douglass streets.

Organizers say they're planning all sorts of fun, including a pet costume contest, agility course, pooch portraits, and plenty of treats. Participants can register for a drawing to win theater tickets, a new dog bed, a pet travel kit, and a variety of gift certificates from local businesses. Raffle tickets are $3 each, or less if you buy in bulk. The event needs more volunteers, so visit the group's web site at www.fuddp .org for more information.

Electoral College Up for a Vote?

You can find out about a proposal to split up California's electoral college votes at the next meeting of the Noe Valley Democratic Club. The proposed ballot measure, called the "Presidential Election Reform Act," would do away with the custom of awarding all of California's 55 electoral votes to the winner of the popular vote. Instead, two electoral votes would go to the statewide winner, and the rest would be awarded to whoever won in each of 53 state congressional districts. The (mostly Republican) drafters of the law are currently collecting signatures to place it on the June ballot. If passed, it would take effect in the November 2008 presidential election.

To shed more light on the subject, the Democratic Club has invited Scott Wiener, chairman of the San Francisco Democratic Party, and Christopher Waldrep, an American history professor at San Francisco State University, to speak at its Wednesday, Oct. 17, meeting, which starts at 7:30 p.m. The free event will take place at the Noe Valley Ministry, 1021 Sanchez Street between 23rd and Elizabeth streets, and is open to the public.

Board Changes at Friends

The Friends of Noe Valley will elect board members for 2008 at its October community meeting, says the group's current president, Richard May. Also on the agenda will be a discussion of the Google commuter buses operating in the neighborhood. In addition, May says developer Brian Maloney will be on hand to answer questions about plans for the condos in the former Lunny House on 24th Street across from Bell Market.

All are invited to attend the meeting, which will be held on Thursday, Oct. 11, from 7:30 to 9 p.m., at St. Philip's church hall on Diamond Street between 24th and Elizabeth streets. For information, e-mail May at

Noe Valley Chamber Music, Round 15

A new season of eight Noe Valley Chamber Music concerts begins this month, marking the 15th anniversary of the series. On Sunday, Oct. 14, at 4 p.m., the Tilden Trio--comprised of a violinist, cellist, and pianist--will perform music from the Romantic era, including a Beethoven trio and pieces by Arensky and Ravel. They'll also perform a new piece, Tilden Park, which was composed by the group's violinist, Sam Oliver.

Oliver is the first violin of the San Francisco Symphony. He graduated from the Juilliard School, as did the trio's multiple award-winning pianist, June Choi Oh. The trio's cellist, Peter Wyrick, is the associate principal cellist in the San Francisco Symphony.

The Noe Valley Chamber Music concerts are held at the Noe Valley Ministry, 1021 Sanchez Street near Elizabeth Street. General admission to the concert is $18, or $15 for students and seniors. For tickets and information on other concerts in the series, call 648-5236 or visit

Guests Arrive on Odd Mondays

With three odd-numbered Mondays in October, the Odd Mondays event series at the Noe Valley Ministry is chock full this month. On Monday, Oct. 1, author and musician Alicia Bay Laurel will read from the new edition of her 1970 book Living on the Earth. Writer Alexandra Endres, whose novel Bride Island was recently published, will read on Monday, Oct. 15. On Monday, Oct. 29, the series hosts Sardinian composer and pianist Luciano Chessa and Nigerian-born poet Uchechi Kalu. All events begin at 7 p.m.

To join the organizers beforehand for a no-host dinner at 5:30 p.m. at Noe Valley Pizza (24th and Sanchez streets), e-mail For more information about the Odd Mondays series, visit

NERT Drill and New Training

A drill for all Neighborhood Emergency Response Team members in Noe Valley and surrounding neighborhoods will be held on Saturday, Oct. 13, from 9 a.m. until noon. San Francisco's NERT program teaches potentially life-saving skills, such as shutting off utilities, providing first aid, and conducting light search-and-rescue, which are useful in the event of an earthquake or other disaster.

The October drill will focus on "setting up a staging area and [practicing] 'earthquake eyes'--looking around the neighborhood for hazards and resources," says co-organizer Jennifer Mayer. The drill will be held at Holly Park, located on Elsie Street at Holly Park Circle.

Members of the public are welcome to observe as well as register for the next free NERT training, which will be held on two Saturdays beginning Nov. 10, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. at St. Kevin's Church Hall, 704 Cortland Avenue near Anderson. Sign up at or call 970-2024.

Precita Eyes Turns 30

Precita Eyes, the nonprofit mural arts center that has supported more than 400 murals in San Francisco, celebrates its 30th birthday this month with a gala event to raise $50,000. Precita Eyes' fundraiser will be held on Saturday, Oct. 20, from 6 to 10 p.m. at Project Artaud, 499 Alabama Street near 17th Street.

Mayor Gavin Newsom will attend as the event's honorary co-chair, and 30 of San Francisco's master muralists will donate prize art for a silent auction. The benefit is open to the public, and tickets are $30. To reserve yours, call 285-2287 or e-mail For more information about the organization, visit

Music Series Gets Creative

Innovative jazz will be filling the upper sanctuary of the Noe Valley Ministry this month and next at the Noe Valley Music Series.

On Saturday, Oct. 6, clarinetist Ben Goldberg, bassist Devin Hoff, and drummer Scott Amendola will celebrate the release of their new CD, Plays Monk, with an homage to 20th-century jazz icon Thelonious Monk.

Two weeks later, on Saturday, Oct. 20, two trios--Kihnoua and TIPS--will perform music that will take you from America to Asia to France and back again.

Kihnoua features Korean vocalist/performance artist Dohee Lee, saxophonist Larry Ochs (of the ROVA Saxophone Quartet), and percussionist Scott Amendola, playing sounds that combine contemporary jazz improvisation with traditional music from Asia. Soprano sax king Bruce Ackley (also of ROVA), Philip Greenlief on alto sax, and vocalist Aurora Josephson form the TIPS trio, and their part of the show will be highlighted by a piece written by jazz great Steve Lacy that uses French text from the notebooks of the cubist artist Georges Braque.

Once you've been transported by those concerts, you might want to get tickets for Iva Bittová. The Czech avant-garde violinist and singer, who also played the role of Zena in the 2003 Holocaust film Zelary, performs at the Music Series Nov. 3. She'll play her own compositions and will bring along some special guests.

Tickets for the October concerts are $16 in advance (available at Streetlight Records on 24th Street); $18 at the door. (They're $18 and $20 for Bittová.) Shows start at 8:15 p.m.; doors open at the church at 1021 Sanchez Street at 7:45 p.m. For more information, call 454-5238 or go to

Glen Park Branch Unveiled

A grand celebration is scheduled for Saturday, Oct. 13, to mark the re-opening of the Glen Park Branch Library, which now has six times the space it had at the old location. The new branch is at 2825 Diamond Street near Chenery and is part of the new Glen Park Marketplace, a multi-use building that includes housing and an organic grocery (Canyon Market).

The celebration kicks off at 1 p.m. with lion dancers, musicians, kids' entertainment, and a fair on Diamond Street, which will be closed to traffic. Mayor Gavin Newsom, Supervisor Bevan Dufty, City Librarian Luis Herrera, and members of the community will open the doors.

Library services begin at 2 p.m. in the 8,500-square-foot space, which includes special areas for children and teens, 40 percent more materials, new computers, and wireless Internet access. The Glen Park branch is the fifth to be renovated under the Branch Library Improvement Program, funded by a bond measure passed in 2000. For more information, call 557-4277 or visit