Tag Archives: Kim Aronson

First Bay Area Book Festival in Berkeley a soaring success

Books appear to fly at the Lacuna installation in front of Old City Hall at the first Bay Area Book Festival in Berkeley. Photo: Nancy Rubin
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How do you decide if an event is a success? One clear indicator is how many people turn up, but the day after the inaugural Bay Area Book Festival came to a close, its creator and executive director Cherilyn Parsons was still trying to put a number on that.

“I would say 50,000 to 60,000 as a ballpark figure,” she mused Monday, after throwing out some venue capacity numbers and drawing on estimates suggested by festival colleague Lisa Bullwinkel who produced the whole show.

The truth, as anyone who attended the two-day festival that took over downtown Berkeley on June 6-7 can testify, is that there were lines down the block to get in to most author events. Of which there were 100 at indoor venues across town, with many more happening outdoors on the teen and children’s stages. More than 300 authors flocked to the city to participate, and stayed on to sign books and attend panels. And the festival’s centerpiece, the dramatic Lacuna “temple of books” installation in Civic Center Park, which Parsons said quickly became “the emotional and spiritual heart of the festival,” was thrumming with people all weekend. To the extent that the 50,000 free books on offer were almost all gone by the end of the festival’s first day.

So, it seems fair to say the first Bay Area Book Festival, conceived by Parsons three years ago, and inspired by her experience working at the Los Angeles Book Festival, was an outstanding success. … Continue reading »

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Local business

In case you missed it: Startup Berkeley Forum highlights

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Last month, Berkeleyside held its second Local Business Forum, concentrating on “Startup Berkeley” — the strengths and weaknesses of the city for startups. If you weren’t able to attend, or if you just want a quick refresher on the evening, we’ve condensed the two hours into a little more than six minutes of highlights (above).

Speakers at the Forum were Mayor Tom Bates’ chief of staff, Judy Iglehart, Stupid Fun Club founder Will Wright, MOG founder and CEO … Continue reading »

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News

Berkeley man makes a (really rather nice) dumpster home

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Gregory Kloehn lives in central Berkeley and he makes things for a living. His latest creation may be his most inventive yet, for Kloehn has fabricated a home out of a dumpster — yes, your regular dumpster, known primarily as a receptacle for trash.

This isn’t the first home Kloehn, 41, has made. Working from a workshop in Oakland, he has crafted homes, offices, and sound studios out of shipping containers. He also knows his way around a remodel. In … Continue reading »

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“America is Food Heaven”: A Danish immigrant’s story

A typical open-faced Danish sandwich. Photo: danishsandwich.com
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By Anna Mindess

Kim Aronson’s life changed twice. First, when he met and fell in love with Rosy, a vivacious American woman on sojourn in Denmark, second, when he visited her large, Jewish family who introduced him to the delights of American dining in Chicago.

Kim and I are sitting in his sunny Berkeley backyard, sipping bubbly water and nibbling pumpkin seeds, but we could just as easily be dishing his Danish food heritage at local eateries like May … Continue reading »

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A Banksy sighting in Berkeley? We think not

Fake Banksy 1
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It isn’t the first time we have been sent photos of an image on a wall with the claim that it was done by celebrity British street artist Banksy — and it probably won’t be the last.

We are skeptical this piece — which is in the empty lot at the cornor of University and McGee Avenues — has anything to do with Banksy, not least because it lacks his original sense of wit.

Nevertheless we would like to be proved … Continue reading »

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Your neighbors: Mr and Mrs Mopps’

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Devin McDonald and Jenny Stevenson took on a much-loved Berkeley institution when they bought Mr Mopps’ toy store in October. The couple read about Mr Mopps’ being for sale on Berkeleyside and decided it was their mission to save it.

Kim Aronson is an online community builder who has lived in Berkeley for the past decade. He makes short films on the side. This is his fifth video report for Berkeleyside about Berkeley people — your neighbors. … Continue reading »

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Your neighbors: barber Harold Spiller

Kim Aronson is an online community builder who has lived in Berkeley for the past decade. He makes short films on the side. You’ll find his fourth video for Berkeleyside, about Harold Spiller at Porter’s Barber Shop above.

Watch Aronson’s first Berkeleyside film, about Sunday softball organizer Raymond Weschler, his second about poster maker Doug Minkler, and his third, about the “you’re perfect” guy, Benjamin Smythe.

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Your neighbors: “You’re perfect” and Benjamin Smythe

Kim Aronson is an online community builder who has lived in Berkeley for the past decade. He makes short films on the side. You’ll find his third video for Berkeleyside, about Benjamin Smythe, above.

Watch Aronson’s first Berkeleyside film, about Sunday softball organizer Raymond Weschler, and his second about poster maker Doug Minkler.

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