Author Archives: Tracey Taylor

Police

Berkeley man, 60, falls to his death from Grizzly Peak Blvd

Grizzly Peak Blvd near Signpost 14. Photo: Tracey Taylor
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Update, 1:20 p.m.: The victim has been identified by the Alameda County Coroner’s Bureau as Donald Terrence Odwyer, 60, of Berkeley. UCPD Lt. Marc DeCoulode said witnesses saw Odwyer walking then falling on Grizzly Peak Blvd Sunday. They called emergency services at 8:24 p.m. Moraga and Orinda Fire Department responded. UCPD arrived on scene at 9:45 p.m. after jurisdiction was established. The incident happened on UC Berkeley property. Odwyer was pronounced dead at the scene. 

Original story: A 60-year-old Berkeley man died after falling from a look-out spot on Grizzly Peak Boulevard on the evening of Sunday, Aug. 17, according to UC Berkeley Police. … Continue reading »

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The It List: Five things to do in Berkeley this weekend

Tilden lake
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FREE PARK LIFE The East Bay Regional Park District is celebrating its 80th birthday by offering “free third Fridays” in its parks, including Tilden. From April to December, fees will be waived for a variety of park services, every third Friday of each month, which includes Friday, Aug. 15. On those days, you get free parking, free boat launching (note, boat launchers still have to pay for the required invasive mussel inspection); free entry for horses and dogs, free swimming, free fishing permits (anglers still have to possess a California state fishing license, for which there’s a fee. And there will still be fees for camping and for group picnic reservations); and there’s free entry to Ardenwood Historic Farm in Fremont (normally $2-$6). The Park District says Free Fridays are its way of thanking the public for eighty years of support. “A grass-roots movement provided the political momentum for establishment of the district back in 1934, and public support has been key to the district’s successes ever since.” … Continue reading »

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In Berkeley park, free boxing program inspires young men

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It started when Manuel Buendía began taking his young sons to San Pablo Park in Berkeley to teach them to box. Soon others wanted to join in, and now Buendía runs an informal, free boxing training program for any young person who shows interest.

Buendía hopes the sessions are helping some of the participants stay out of trouble. As he says in the video above, “Instead of them fighting out on the street, they should bring it here. Here in the park, right? They can take their anger out here, with boxing.”

Luis Flores, a UC Berkeley student who also attended Berkeley High School, shot the video above through Youth Radio, a non-profit based in downtown Oakland. … Continue reading »

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Berkeley’s first parklet opens in the Gourmet Ghetto

Berkeley's first parklet has opened outside the Cheese Board Collective at xxxx Shattuck Ave. Photo: Colleen Neff
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It’s been a long time coming, but Berkeley today welcomed its first ever permanent parklet.

The enclosed sitting and eating area is located outside the ever-popular Cheese Board Collective at 1520 Shattuck Ave. in the city’s Gourmet Ghetto neighborhood.

“It is lovely!” said Colleen Neff who took some of the photos shown here. … Continue reading »

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6 new Berkeley and Oakland restaurants to try now

Los Cilantros
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1. Los Cilantros

Dilsa Lugo opened Los Cilantros at La Peña Cultural Center in Berkeley in May after running her own catering business under the same name for several years, cooking for high-profile clients such as Isabel Allende along the way. Lugo, who arrived in the Bay Area in 2003 speaking no English, was helped by La Cocina, the nonprofit food business incubator in San Francisco’s Mission district that works with low-income female food entrepreneurs. Now the talented cook is serving up huevos divorciados, torta para desayuno and churros for the breakfast crowd, and carnitas, albondigas and tacos at lunchtime in La Peña’s café space. There’s also a weekend brunch. (See the full Los Cilantros menu.) The Chronicle called Los Cilantros’ slow-cooked barbacoa, which comes with a smoky almond salsa, “absurdly good.Los Cilantros is at 3105 Shattuck Ave., Berkeley. [Read about Lugo's path to opening her own restaurant.] Continue reading »

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Noah’s Bagels: 25-cent deal for 25th anniversary

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Noah’s Bagels, which was founded by Noah Alper on College Avenue in Berkeley in the summer of 1989, is celebrating its 25th anniversary Aug. 6 with a “today-only” offer of a 25-cent bagel and shmear at participating stores.

Noah’s has several stores in the East Bay, including three in Berkeley — on College, Telegraph and Solano avenues — and two in Oakland, on Lakeshore and in Montclair.

The bagel purveyor specializes in New York-style bagels (although bagel aficionados inevitably like to argue over how authentic they are). The chain is a business success story. Six years after Alper opened the first store in Berkeley, Noah’s Bagels had expanded to dozens of outlets and was sold to Einstein Bagel Bros. for $100 million dollars. Since then, Noah’s stores can be found across the nation. … Continue reading »

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Architecture

4 stunning Berkeley homes on East Bay architecture tour

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Four beautiful Berkeley homes will be on show at this year’s American Institute of Architects East Bay Homes Tour which takes place on Saturday, Aug. 9.

There are six homes on the tour — the others are in Albany, Oakland and Piedmont — and many of them belong to the architects or designers who dreamed them up, so visitors get to see how professionals design for themselves.

The four Berkeley homes offer variety in both style and scale. One, a stunning two-story Oakland house with a Berkeley postal address (pictured top) was built on the site of a home destroyed by the Oakland firestorm. It was designed by WA Design to be a home that feels open to the landscape and the bay view, while providing privacy from the nearby street and sidewalk.

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Best burgers in the East Bay: Nosh readers call it

Burgers from TrueBurger on Grand Avenue in Oakland, which got the most votes among Noshers
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A while ago (OK, three months ago — what can we say? We got busy reporting other news), we asked readers who makes the best burger in the East Bay? The answers came in thick and fast: juicy grass-fed beef burgers oozing with cheese and bacon, nutritious veggie sliders accompanied by garlicky french fries, gourmet gluten-free or straight-up regular — there was no shortage of favorites.

The votes were scattered over nearly 50 burger purveyors, and there was little wiggle-room between the total tallies for each restaurant, which just goes to show how spoilt we are in the East Bay when it comes to that all-important decision: where to grab a superior burger right now.

So, with the understanding that this was a totally unscientific poll, and that everyone was a winner, we give you the most popular burgers as voted by Noshers — and we’ve also created a nifty interactive map with details about each spot, so you know where to head to try local favorites. … Continue reading »

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News

8 Berkeley stories you may have missed this week

For the first time last week, the Berkeley City Council weighed in on improvements planned for the downtown Berkeley plaza and BART station. (Click the image for details.) Image: BART
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1. Man convicted of first-degree murder of Berkeley woman: exclusive Berkeleyside coverage 2. Pot for the poor: National media scream “Berzekeley,” but it’s nothing new 3. New 6-story apartment building to rise in downtown, part of construction boom 4. City backtracks on evicting homeless encampment at Gilman underpass 5. Hurrah say kids everywhere: Tilden Little Farm, merry-go-round are open again! 6. New designs for downtown Berkeley BART Plaza scrutinized by Council 7. Local author Edan … Continue reading »

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Bites: Marrow closes, Shakewell, Half Orange open

Marrow
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Openings, closings…

MARROW CLOSES Marrow, the lunch restaurant opened last year by Jon Kosorek (who gained a loyal following with his Jon’s Street Eats truck) has closed up shop. The last day for the meat-loving spot at 325 19th St. (at Harrison) in Oakland was July 2. Kosorek said the past year has been demanding for himself and his wife, Amy Porter Kosorek. A new baby and health concerns on both sides of the family prompted the decision, as well as the continuing hunt for a new, bigger location. Marrow sourced local, sustainably raised whole animals and then used different techniques to use the entire animal. Menu items might have included beef heart tartare along with more conventional offerings like a classic Reuben sandwich. But Kosorek had to deviate from his original concept, adding dishes like grilled cheese sandwiches and vegetarian options like tomato and avocado salads, because the market wasn’t there. “We dumbed down the menu to where it’s basically a burger joint,” he told the East Bay Express. Writing on Marrow’s Facebook page, Kosorek said he is going to work with a friend in Napa who runs “a really great open-fire catering business, and work on finding the ideal location for Marrow or the next incarnation of Marrow.”Continue reading »

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The It List: Five things to do in Berkeley this weekend

Shrek The Musical continues at Berkeley Playhouse through Aug. x. photo Ken Levin
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SHREK THE MUSICAL Shrek the Musical continues at Berkeley Playhouse through Aug. 3, including several performances on Saturday July 12 and Sunday July 13. This “silly, modern-day fairytale,” described as “a visual adventure” and “highly entertaining” by local reviewers, tells the story of everyone’s favorite ogre who goes on a life-changing adventure. Joined by a wise-cracking donkey, this unlikely hero fights a fearsome dragon, rescues a feisty princess and learns that friendship and love aren’t only found in fairy tales. The large adult and youth cast is directed and choreographed by Matthew McCoy with music direction by Rachel Robinson. Visit Berkeley Playhouse for dates and times, including several “pay what you can” performances. … Continue reading »

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Tilden Little Farm, merry-go-round re-open to public

Cow Barn at Tilden's Little Farm which has reopened to the public after 10 months. Photo: EBRPD
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Nearly 10 months after it closed in order for necessary sewer work to be done, Tilden’s much-loved Little Farm has reopened to the public. The park’s vintage merry-go-round is also spinning again, after being taken over by new management.

The timeline for the sewer construction project was originally five months, but the scope of the work became increasingly large, said David Zuckermann, Supervising Naturalist at East Bay Regional Parks District.

“We originally thought we would be reopening in February,” he said. “But then we had to keep extending that month by month.”

Zuckermann said that it was only when crews began trenching the area that the scale of the job became apparent. “The sewer system is as old as the park, and Tilden, which is celebrating its 80th anniversary this year, is one of the three original East Bay parks,” he said. (The other two are Sibley and Lake Temescal.)

During the work, several areas other than the farm were also closed, including Indian Camp parking lot, picnic area, play structure and restroom, and the Big Leaf picnic area and restroom. … Continue reading »

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New food truck market coming to Uptown Oakland

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A new weekly food truck market is coming to Uptown Oakland starting next week, on Monday, July 14, from 5 to 9 p.m. It will be the city’s second following the launch in early 2013 of a Lake Merritt market that takes place outside the Oakland Museum of California every Friday evening.

Off the Grid: Uptown Oakland will be located outside The Uptown apartment complex on Williams Street and Telegraph Avenue, near the Fox Theater. Food trucks slated to participate on a rotating basis include Roderick’s BBQ, burger and brunch vendor Doc’s of the Bay, Argentine empanadas specialist El Porteno, sweet treat purveyor Garden Creamery, meat maestros Out of the Cave, sliders and fries guys Whip Out, Japanese crêperie J Shack, Frozen Kuhsterd, Ebbett’s Good to Go, and Mediterranean mavens SAJJ. … Continue reading »

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