Category Archives: Community
Berkeley residents could see a 25% hike in their garbage pick-up fees as the city struggles to find a way to bridge the gap between the cost of pick-up services and the income they generate.
In a special session Tuesday night, staff explained that the Refuse Fund, used to cover pick-up fees, is slated to run at an annual $2-3 million deficit over the next five years, leading the city to consider boosting pick-up fees.
As a result, residents who use the most common trash container, which holds 32 gallons, would go from paying about $30 a month to about $37. And those costs would continue to rise annually by 3% beginning in fiscal year 2016 as part of the city’s efforts to adopt a “sustainable rate structure” that could keep pace with rising costs.
Those increases, staff explained to council, would lead to a $5 million surplus in the Refuse Fund by fiscal year 2019, allowing the city to consider ways to update its outdated transfer station, which city manager Christine Daniel described Tuesday night as “not remotely close to industry standards.” … Continue reading »
Saturday was Small Business Saturday. To get the word out, Looking Glass Photo & Camera held their second annual ‘Local on the Hunt’ photography scavenger tour . Berkeleyside contributing photographer Pete Rosos set out to participate with his daughter Coco and son Teo in tow. Here are the results (read the captions to see what challenge led to the creation of the image.) All are visual reminders that our local merchants are wonderful places to visit year-round, not just in the gift-buying season. … Continue reading »
A funeral mass was held last week in Berkeley for John Paul (“JP”) Koehn, 29, who died Nov. 21 in a car accident linked to the windstorm of Nov. 21.
Koehn helped manage the family manufacturing firm, Edward Köehn Co. Inc., established in Berkeley in 1943.
Much loved by many, J.P. attended St. Mary’s High and graduated from Albany High in 2003. After graduation he studied wood working, furniture building, and worked in cabinet making for a time.
In 2005, he joined the family manufacturing firm in Berkeley as part of the third generation of Koehns. With his dad’s retirement a few years ago he assumed all sales duties and much of the management of the firm, helping it grow to its present size.
Perhaps the most important events in his life were the birth of his daughter in 2009 and the death of his older brother Michael when JP was 13. Like his folks and siblings, he never really got over Mike’s death. … Continue reading »
Berkeleyside has an erratic tradition of alphabetizing our thanks each year. More than 26 things struck us this year, but, within the constraints of an A to Z, here’s Berkeleyside’s Thanksgiving alphabet. Let us know what you’re thankful for in the Comments. And Happy Thanksgiving! See you back here Monday morning.
A Ambassadors: The Downtown Berkeley Association’s Hospitality Ambassadors are a key element in the continuing improvement of downtown.
B Beer and wine: The opening of Sierra Nevada’s Torpedo Room caps a year when Berkeley’s provision of both good beer and wine has been growing apace. West Berkeley’s Drinks District is becoming a real force.
C CalJulia: Several Berkeley neighborhoods are in the process of regeneration, but perhaps the most encouraging work is occurring in the Sacramento Street corridor, led in part by the CalJulia neighborhood group. … Continue reading »
Last month, Berkeleyside introduced an exciting new project by our longstanding contributing photographer Nancy Rubin. With Humans of Berkeley and the Bay Area (HUBBA for short), Rubin is chronicling in wonderful images the people of Berkeley and beyond. Today we are delighted to publish another set of Rubin’s photographs.
Read our interview with Rubin in which she talks about what inspired her to start the project and how it also has a philanthropic element. And be sure to click though to the HUBBA project on Facebook (and “like” it) to read extended captions for the photographs shown here and many more. HUBBA is also now on Tumblr. … Continue reading »
Berkeley’s first-ever half marathon kicked off at 8 a.m. at Civic Center Park yesterday. It drew nearly 8,000 runners participating in one of the three race distances and more than $50,000 was raised for participating charities.
The marathon winners were both Berkeleyans: Anna Bretan, who also won the 2013 San Francisco Marathon, and UC Berkeley student JP Slater (read more in our story published yesterday).
There was one medical emergency, and at least one Berkeley resident said crossing town by car while the marathon was under way was near-on impossible. “There were no ‘detour’ signs anywhere along any of there streets going south-north which cross University,” she wrote us.
In opening remarks to the gathered crowd, councilmember Laurie Capitelli said the marathon as an “historic event.” Addressing the runners he added that as they ran through the city they would not be seeing “the Berkeley that your mom and dad remember.”
Here we publish a selection of the many wonderful photographs shared with us by Berkeleyside readers.
Stubbornly, Frederic Brunke, who died on Nov. 19, never learned to drive. Walking one end of Berkeley to the other with his signature hat and rucksack, Fred knew more people than most of us. In earlier years he carried a beautiful wooden Japanese umbrella to shade his delicate exposed skin from the sun. I learned of his death from a mutual friend — Fred was one of the first people we met when we moved to Berkeley in 1968.
Fred was a born bookman: owner of Myths & Texts next to the old Serendipity Books on Shattuck Ave. in the early 70s; small press publisher, Shaman Drum; even one of the early copy shop workers at Carbon Copy on Solano Avenue, next door to our Sand Dollar Books, where the newness of copy machines became a vehicle for making art late into the night. … Continue reading »
Thursday night’s high winds caused a range of damage around town and left residents talking about what they were seeing and hearing. We pulled their reactions into a Storify package. For more photos of the destruction wrought by the windstorm, check out Berkeleyside’s Facebook page where we are posting readers’ images.
Four Berkeley High student athletes have been awarded athletic scholarships at Division I universities, and, on Friday Nov. 15, they gathered with their friends and family at the Berkeley High library for their official signing ceremony.
The students, who are also all stars in the classroom, are Noah Bremer who is headed to the University of Washington to play baseball, Desire Finnie who will attend the University of the Pacific and play basketball, Lena Mayer who will play softball for UC Santa Barbara, and Naomi Overstreet who will go to Virginia Commonwealth University to play volleyball. … Continue reading »
Supporters of Sasha Fleischman, the 18-year-old Maybeck High School student who was set fire to while riding an AC Transit bus on Nov. 4, are planning a solidarity march tonight, Thursday Nov. 14, on MacArthur Boulevard in Oakland. The group plans to tie rainbow ribbons to bus poles to add to those already placed there in recent days.
Meanwhile, in a letter to the Sequoia Elementary School community where he works as a kindergarten teacher, Sasha’s father, Karl Fleischman, said he did not want people to jump to conclusions about the motivations of the 16-year-old Oakland High School student who has been charged with a hate crime for setting fire to Sasha’s skirt. And a fundraising campaign to pay for the teenager’s medical bills was reopened yesterday after raising more than $20,000 in just a couple of days.
Fleischman, a senior at the private Berkeley school who identifies as “agender,” was napping in the rear of a No. 57 AC Transit bus heading toward the family home in Oakland when 16-year-old Richard Thomas allegedly set the skirt Fleischman was wearing on fire, according to authorities. … Continue reading »
Listen up, readers, right off the bat we need to issue a disclaimer: We don’t know the full answer to the question posed in the headline. But we’re hopeful that, by putting out what we do know, perhaps more will come in from the community about the mysterious local resident whose notes inspire, entertain and have been known on many occasions to brighten people’s days. … Continue reading »
It was her first week as a 2013 freshman at UC Berkeley when Sarah Jones witnessed a fellow student being rushed to hospital with suspected alcohol poisoning. The female student, who lives in the same dorm as Jones (not her real name), was turning 18 and friends had lined up 18 shots for her to drink. Jones said she doesn’t remember how many the student had drunk before the ambulance was called.
Last week, ABC 7′s I-Team produced a troubling report about a surge in extreme drinking so far this year at UC Berkeley. According to the investigation, UC Berkeley has seen an increase in the number of students who get so drunk, often at frat parties, that they need to be taken to the hospital for care.
This has, at times, put a significant burden on the city’s ambulance services, leaving other city residents waiting for care, or requiring the Berkeley Fire Department to call for help from other paramedics in the region. It also puts pressure on the hospital closest to campus, Alta Bates, according to ABC. … Continue reading »
Longfellow eighth-grader Andrei Crandall is already making headway in the photo world, despite his young age. Crandall, who is 14, was invited to join the San Diego Museum of Art’s artist guild when he was just 12, after contributing his work as part of a blind juried competition. He has also been published in Southwest Airlines’ Spirit magazine.
According to his artist statement, Crandall was born in a small city in far eastern Russia. He moved to Berkeley as a 4-year-old after he was adopted by “two moms who love to travel and take me and my camera with them.”
Crandall has taken photographs in Fiji, China, France, Spain, Mexico and around the United States. His most recent trip was to New Orleans in April. Photographs from that trip are on view in an exhibit called “The Streets of New Orleans” at The Alta Bates Community Art Gallery, at 2450 Ashby Ave., through Nov. 23. Crandall also has photographs showing at The Homemade Café, 2454 Sacramento St.