Tag Archives: North Berkeley

Bedbugs found in Berkeley library; North Branch closed

North Branch Library
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The North Branch of the Berkeley Public Library was shuttered Friday morning after officials discovered bedbugs in three different areas of the branch.

Bedbug-sniffing dogs identified the possible presence of bedbugs in the downstairs men’s restroom, underneath the desks of the public computer area, and in a chair in the reading room. No books or library materials appear to be infected, according to a press release from the library administration. … Continue reading »

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Man arrested in Pharmaca robbery linked to second case

Police have arrested a man they believe is linked to two Berkeley robberies, including one at Pharmaca, at Solano and Ensenada, in late August. Photo: Michael Patrick
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Police have arrested a 22-year-old San Pablo man in connection with a robbery at Pharmaca on Solano Avenue in late August, and say they believe he is linked to another Berkeley robbery two days later.

In response to a request from Berkeleyside, police confirmed the arrest of Covan VanHook in connection with the Aug. 29 robbery at Pharmaca Integrative Pharmacy, at Solano and Ensenada avenues.

Berkeley Police spokeswoman Officer Jennifer Coats said another agency arrested VanHook in Contra Costa County on Sept. 3 in connection with a different case.

In the Pharmaca incident, a man entered the North Berkeley business with a gun and demanded prescription medication from the pharmacist, Coats said previously. The robber “jumped over the counter with a gun pointed at the employees and told them to fill his backpack,” according to unconfirmed scanner traffic. … Continue reading »

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Work at Berkeley’s Terrace View Park delayed, again

Terrace View Park, Berkeley. Photo: Kathleen Costanza
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Renovation work at Terrace View Park in North Berkeley, originally scheduled to be completed by Sept. 15, has been pushed back until Oct. 30 due to construction complications. Located between Fairlawn Drive and Queens Road, the park has been closed off completely since April 27.

The work includes renovating the basketball courts on the lowest level of the park and adding access ramps for people with disabilities. In February, the city awarded the bid to McNabb Construction for $347,155. The renovation is funded by 2008’s bond Measure WW, which gave the city nearly $5 million to spend on parks over 10 years, as well as the Capital Improvement Fund.

But after further testing, a storm drain was discovered to be badly damaged and needed to be fixed first, according to an email to a resident from Scott Ferris, director of Parks, Water and Recreation, and confirmed by city spokesperson Matthai Chakko. The city awarded that bid to W. R. Forde Associates, and the storm drain portion of construction ended in June, delaying the rest of the renovation. … Continue reading »

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Photo Gallery: The 41st annual Solano Stroll

Solano Stroll 2015. Photo: Nancy Rubin
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The weather was perfect — not too hot, not too cold — and the Berkeley-Albany institution that is the Solano Stroll was a tremendous affair for the 41st straight year.

Billed as “one mile of free family fun,” the event saw a great big parade and tens of thousands of people ambling along Solano Avenue in North Berkeley and Albany, enjoying entertainment, conversations at the many booths, shopping at the dozens of retailers on the street, and great food and drink.

Many people stopped by the Berkeleyside booth to say hello and chat — it was a pleasure to see you. Enjoy these wonderful photos by our contributing photographer Nancy Rubin. (And view the full album.) … Continue reading »

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Berkeley’s Corso expands salumi, pasta programs

Briganti pasta from Corso. Photo: Alix Wall
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With the opening seven years ago of Corso, co-owner and executive chef Wendy Brucker and co-owner Roscoe Skipper set out to recreate a trattoria with the simplicity of a Tuscan restaurant. The restaurant quickly found its regulars, partially due to the reputation of its sister restaurant Rivoli. However, chef de cuisine Scott Eastman says the restaurant is just now finding its groove.

“It’s taken us some time and practice to really get there, but now is the time where the restaurant is really starting to reach the mind’s eye of what the owners wanted it to be,” he said.

Eastman would know. He’s been there since the restaurant opened in 2008. “I had the opportunity to see a restaurant from its beginning and I just continued to grow with this place,” he said. … Continue reading »

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Pharmaca in North Berkeley held up at gunpoint

Berkeley Police cruiser, Officer Jennifer Coats. Photo: Emilie Raguso
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Police are investigating a robbery at gunpoint at a Solano Avenue pharmacy over the weekend.

The robbery took place at 5:10 p.m. Saturday at Pharmaca at 1744 Solano Ave., at Ensenada Avenue.

According to Berkeley Police spokeswoman Officer Jennifer Coats, a man entered the North Berkeley business with a gun and demanded prescription medication from the pharmacist.

The robber “jumped over the counter with a gun pointed at the employees and told them to fill his backpack,” according to unconfirmed scanner traffic. … 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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‘Stolen 911’ helps woman recover pilfered painting

 “Some people said I would never see it again," said Nellie Hill of Berkeley, seen here with her recovered oil painting, which had been stolen in January. Photo: Stolen 911
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A Berkeley woman has recovered a treasured family painting, stolen from her home in January, with the help of a website designed to get stolen goods back into the hands of their rightful owners.

North Berkeley resident Nellie Hill got a phone call last week from a Marin County man who had come into possession of the stolen oil painting, and wanted to return it.

Hill said the man had searched for the painter’s name online, and found a listing she had created on the website Stolen 911. Her post described the theft of the artwork and asked for help getting it back. The man called Hill after seeing the post, and told her he wanted to return the painting.

Hill said she had not expected the call, particularly because so much time had passed since the package containing the painting had been stolen from her home less than an hour after it had been delivered in late January. … Continue reading »

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North Berkeley BART station closed due to grenade scare

BART closure. Photo Josh Schoolfiled
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The North Berkeley BART station was closed briefly Thursday evening after someone reported seeing what appeared to be a live grenade in the station’s satellite parking lot on Franklin Street.

According to BART Police, a responding officer checked the device and determined it appeared to be a live explosive.

With the assistance of the Berkeley Police local residents were evacuated from the immediate neighborhood at around 6:50 p.m., and a safety perimeter was established.

The station was closed as a precaution, and the UC Berkeley police bomb squad was called in. Members of the bomb squad inspected the device and determined it was a toy grenade. … Continue reading »

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North Berkeley package destroyed, likely a hoax

The suspicious package (on the left) in North Berkeley has been rendered safe. Photo: Devin Taylor-McDonald
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Update, July 29, 12 p.m. One local resident said she spotted this box July 19, prior to the police incident: “That was in a neighboring yard full of freebies on Sunday. My husband found a romulan warbird model next to it.…We thought the box was a bad art project.”

Original story, July 22, 1:38 p.m. Police advised the public to avoid the area of Hopkins Street and Monterey Avenue in North Berkeley on Wednesday afternoon after a report of the discovery of a suspicious package.

Authorities ultimately rendered the package safe and an officer on the scene said the scare had likely been the result of a hoax. (Scroll to the bottom of this story to see our live updates throughout the afternoon.)

At about 1:30 p.m., the Berkeley Police Department put out a Nixle alert about the incident: “The Berkeley Police is currently investigating a suspicious package found near the intersection of Monterey Avenue and Hopkins Street. The intersection is closed to all vehicle and pedestrian traffic.”

Police asked people to avoid the area and say they “do not know how long the roadway will be closed.”  … Continue reading »

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A visit with David Goines: Berkeley’s legendary letterpress printer and lithographer

David Goines Photo: Melati Citrawireja
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In the second of a three-part series on expert craftspeople in Berkeley, Melati Citrawireja, a summer 2015 photography intern for Berkeleyside, visits St. Hieronymus Press, the workspace of David Lance Goines. (Read Citrawireja’s first story on Klaus-Ullrich Rötzscher and the Pettingell Book Bindery.)

You may recognize David Goines by his distinctive handlebar mustache and deep, chocolatey voice, or you may know him by his letterpress and lithography artwork. Several pieces that have awarded him widespread attention include a collaborative book with Alice Waters, the owner of Chez Panisse, called 30 Recipes Suitable for Framing, and posters for well-known Bay Area spots, like Acme Bread and UC Berkeley.

Curious to meet the man behind these beautiful pieces that I’ve seen my whole life when thumbing through cookbooks in the kitchen, I ask to visit his workspace and Goines politely invites me over. … Continue reading »

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What are Berkeley’s values? What does the future hold?

Books Inc estimated the crowd at 150-200 for the "Why Berkeley?" event on Monday July 20, 2015.
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On Monday July 20, the newly relocated Books Inc. on Shattuck Avenue was packed to the rafters for a discussion titled “Why Berkeley?”

Hosted by Malcolm Margolin, executive director of Heyday, a number of invited speakers reflected on what Berkeley meant to them, its values now and in the past, and the city’s possible future. Below the fold, we bring you highlights from our live coverage of the event on Twitter. … Continue reading »

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Berkeley woman pistol-whipped during attempted robbery

Somerset Place map
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A 58-year-old woman was threatened with a gun and then pistol-whipped in North Berkeley on July 10 during an attempted robbery, according to the Berkeley police.

The incident occurred on Friday July 10 at approximately 9:20 p.m. on Somerset Place near Southampton Street, according to Berkeley Police spokeswoman Officer Jennifer Coats.

The victim, a resident of Berkeley, had just arrived in the area and parked her vehicle. As she was getting out of her car she was approached by two male suspects. One of the suspects, who was armed with a gun, demanded her property. The victim and suspect struggled as she tried to close her car door and the suspect struck the woman several times with the gun. The victim started to honk her horn and the suspect fled. … Continue reading »

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