Remembering Berkeley community activist Kitty McLean

Kitty McLean, who died on July x. Photo: Courtesy of the family
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On July 13, long-time Berkeley community activist Kitty McLean died of complications from a stroke. Kitty was an unsung heroine of many progressive causes and candidates: a volunteer par excellence.

The wife of UC Berkeley professor Hugh McLean, Kitty was very active in politics. She was always there as a committed volunteer for a variety of progressive/environmental causes, candidates and organizations, including the Sierra Club, League of Women Voters (LWV) and Citizens for an Eastshore State Park (CESP).

No job was too small for Kitty—she was willing to lick stamps, address envelopes, work to develop consensus on LWV issues, canvass door-to-door, participate in phone banks, talk to people, count votes in Sierra Club elections, keep up with elected officials and follow candidates running for office. … Continue reading »

The Berkeley Wire: 08.28.15

Sleeping it off by Film&PhotoArchivist

Sleeping it off by Film&PhotoArchivist

Protesters rally against contentious downtown development (Daily Cal)
Police investigate armed robbery near campus (NBC)
Petitioners call for library director’s removal at meeting (CoCo Times)
Paul Larson to receive Glenn Seaborg award (Cal Athletics)
Project will restore recorded Native American voices (California)
Famous designer heads “brilliant” remodel (SF Gate)

If you like the variety of news on Berkeleyside, you will like the variety of voices we present at Uncharted: The Berkeley Festival of Ideas. Early bird tickets with early bird prices are on sale now for the festival in downtown Berkeley on Oct. 16-17. Click here to see the list of speakers.  

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

The last free outdoor movie of the summer will be Big Hero 6 at Live Oak Park
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BIG HERO 6 The last of this summer’s free movies in the park will be on Friday, Aug. 28 at Live Oak Park, starting at 8 p.m. The free movies are shown by Berkeley’s Parks Recreation & Waterfront Department on an inflatable, 20′ x 12′ screen. Moviegoers are asked to arrive at least 30 minutes before the movie begins. Bring blankets (although it may stay unseasonably warm tonight), sleeping bags and low-back beach chairs (maximum height: 9 inches off the ground). A flashlight or headlamp will help you walking out of the park at the end of the movie. The outdoor films are alcohol-free events. Friday, Aug. 28, 8 p.m., Live Oak Park, 1301 Shattuck Ave.  … Continue reading »

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Berkeley couple takes death of fawn into own hands

Fawn. Photo: Christian Stauduhar
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Disclaimer: This article contains graphic photographs that some may find disturbing. Reader discretion is advised.

A North Berkeley couple was distraught by the death of a fawn near their home on Thursday, and took matters into their own hands after failing, they said, to get a prompt response from city of Berkeley staff or officials.

Christian and Tara Stauduhar say they are convinced an off-leash dog killed the fawn, and say it’s not the first time off-leash dogs have caused problems in the area, on their property and at adjacent Glendale La Loma Park in northeast Berkeley. 

Christian Stauduhar told Berkeleyside, by email, that he woke up just before 7 a.m. Thursday to the sounds of “an animal screaming, a dog barking, and the dog owner yelling for his dog” at the park.

I went outside to investigate, and observed the dog running around on our property before returning to its screaming owner,” Stauduhar wrote. “I was unable to catch more than a glimpse of the owner, who was in the park, about a hundred yards away.”

Stauduhar then looked around for the animal he had heard in distress, and found a fawn on his property. The fawn was “wet around the neck and hind legs, but was able to turn its head to look at me, and was standing.” Stauduhar watched the animal from about 20 feet away for approximately 5 minutes, then went inside.

“The animal had clearly been attacked, but since it looked mobile, and because it is illegal to render aid to a wild animal in California, I left her to her recovery,” he wrote.

About an hour later, he went to check on the fawn and found that it dead. … Continue reading »

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Police: Man groped kids at Strawberry Canyon Pool

Photo: UCPD
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The University of California Police Department is looking for a man reported to have groped several children while they were swimming in Strawberry Canyon Pool on Thursday.

According to a UCPD notice released Friday at about 10:50 a.m., the reports came in Thursday at about 5:45 p.m.

Police say the man “swam up to each victim, grabbed their leg and/or buttocks then swam away. It is possible that there are additional victims.”

Police said the man grabbed several girls, ages 9 to 13, while they were swimming.  … Continue reading »

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Bites: Noodles Fresh opens, Victory Point is close

Victory Point Cafe is wrapping up construction. Photo: Victory Point/Kickstarter
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Openings, closings…

VICTORY POINT CAFÉ AIMS FOR SEPTEMBER While the owners of the upcoming Victory Point Café on Shattuck Avenue initially hoped to open the doors on their board game-themed spot this month, they are now looking at a September opening. We read on the café’s Kickstarter page that construction plans to wrap up by Aug. 31, with a soft opening scheduled for Sept. 1. Victory Point is also still waiting on its beer and wine license, so guests will likely have to make do with coffee, tea and sandwiches while playing one of the café’s 650 board games. Victory Point Café will be at 1797-A Shattuck Ave. (between Francisco and Delaware streets), Berkeley. Connect with the café on Facebook and Twitter.Continue reading »

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Story of Berkeley’s Moe’s Books comes to big screen

Siciliano Trevino held a screening Aug. 27 of her new documentary at the Elmwood Theater. Photo: Ted Friedman
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The film that was found at the Berkeley dump of the 1965 opening night party for Moe’s Books on Telegraph Avenue now has a film of its own.

Thursday night was the premiere of New Mo’ Cut: David Peoples’ Lost Film of Moe’s Books, produced and directed by Siciliana Trevino. Dozens of people who had backed the film on Kickstarter, worked on it, or supported it in other ways, crowded into the Rialto Cinemas Elmwood for a screening. The general public got to see it at 8 p.m. … Continue reading »

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The Berkeley Wire: 08.27.15

BAM/PFA like Hollywood, only better by William Newton. Photo taken Aug. 26, 2015

BAM/PFA like Hollywood, only better by William Newton. Photo taken Aug. 26, 2015

UC alumni arraigned on charges of insider trading (Daily Cal)
“Fear the Walking Dead” and the Berkeley connection (CoCo Times)
Berkeley: A Look Back. University pledges national security support (CoCo Times)
“Living by the Book” exhibit at Magnes explores Jewish bible (UCB News)
Zut allures but doesn’t deliver (Express)
Theater companies embrace female-driven plays for fall (Express)
Berkeley agency responds to bias complaint (Bay Area Reporter)

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Medical helicopter lands in Berkeley’s San Pablo Park

A medical helicopter has landed in San Pablo Park to transport a patient. Photo: hfidek
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A medical helicopter landed at West Berkeley’s San Pablo Park on Thursday afternoon to take a patient to UC Davis, according to unconfirmed scanner reports, for care.

The Berkeley Fire Department picked up the patient from Alta Bates Hospital at about 3:10 p.m., and planned to meet the helicopter at the park, according to scanner traffic.

Carolyn Kemp, spokeswoman for the Alta Bates Summit Medical Center, said the hospital and Berkeley Fire Department began working together around 3 p.m. “to ensure a helicopter airlift of a patient with a life-threatening and rare medical condition.”

Kemp could not provide additional information due to medical privacy laws.  … Continue reading »

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Performance of Berkeley’s library director under fire at meeting of library trustees

Jeff Scott, far left at table, talks to members of BOLT before an Aug. 26 meeting. Photo: Frances Dinkelspiel
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More than 40 people expressed concern about the actions of the Berkeley Library director at a specially called meeting Wednesday night of the Board of Library Trustees.

Those who spoke publicly – who were supported by 40 observers  – not only complained about the aggressive book weeding policy put forward by Jeff Scott, the director, but about other issues, including what they perceive as a hostile working environment and a lack of honesty and trust. They said they thought Scott had lied to the community about the number of books weeded out. (Scott initially said he thought 2,200 books had been discarded this year. He later acknowledged that the real number was 39,000). Some also said they were punished for speaking out against the collections management policy.

As Scott sat at the front of the room, his head bowed as he took notes, in what must have been an excruciatingly difficult meeting for him, a number of the speakers called for him to be either fired or suspended without pay. Others asked for an independent investigation into the weeding process: how it occurred, what might have gone wrong, and what could be learned from it. … Continue reading »

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Berkeley police arrest 3 teens with loaded gun

Berkeley police cruiser (file photo). Photo: Emilie Raguso
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Police arrested three teenagers with a loaded handgun earlier this week after receiving a report about a suspicious vehicle in West Berkeley.

Monday at 7:15 p.m., said Officer Byron White, a Berkeley Police spokesman, the department got an anonymous tip about a vehicle described as suspicious that was parked on Seventh Street near Channing Way.

According to the unknown caller, the people inside the suspicious vehicle were talking about ‘quantities and cost,'” said White in an email. 

Police responded to the scene and detained four people in the vehicle. During the detention, officers found a loaded handgun and “some burglary tools,” said White. The handgun was confiscated as evidence. … Continue reading »

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IKEA donates ‘makeover’ to shelter for homeless families

The "after" picture of a living room at BOSS furnished with Ikea furniture.
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The families living in the McKinley Family Transitional House in Berkeley now have a lovely space from which to plot their move out from homelessness.

IKEA, the Scandinavian furniture store with an outlet in Emeryville, recently donated $10,000 worth of furniture and design services to McKinley House, located at 2111 McKinley Ave. in central Berkeley. The home, which is operated by BOSS, or Building Opportunities for Self-Sufficiency, won the IKEA Life Improvement Challenge.

Now the living room has a comfortable blue plaid couch, lamps, a desk and shelving area, and new art on the wall. The bedrooms have wood dressers, beds and throw rugs. There is also new outdoor furniture on the lawn.

McKinley House is hosting an open house today from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. to show off the redecorated facility.  … Continue reading »

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How Quirky is Berkeley? Fairy Mural on Chaucer Street

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The concept of “mural” takes a new life at 1110 Chaucer St., just above San Pablo Avenue between Channing Way and Bancroft Way. Winding its way from the east end of the house westward, around the corner of the house and up to the chimney, is a celebration of fairies and California native plants.

The mural is the result of a collaboration about 15 years ago between home owner Riley and then-tenant Stefen. Two people with single-name names! Riley restores urban creeks. Stefen paints murals. … Continue reading »

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