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On Eve Of North Beach Festival, Neighborhood Fights Washington Square Park Closure

North Beach Fest, New Saturday Farmers Market, And More North Beach Happenings

As we swing into June, the weather is shifting, and here in North Beach it may as well be summer already. The breeze has picked up, the low clouds have begun to race across the afternoon sky, and we’ve already seen a few foggy mornings. Perhaps because of its contrary character, this may be my favorite time of the year in San Francisco.

And there is plenty afoot in North Beach, to say the least. Top of the list: the annual North Beach Festival, due to hit our streets on Saturday and Sunday, June 16th and 17th. This is always a monster event, and we’re expecting a record turnout for our 64th year. Along with lots of great food, drink and vendors of all kinds, this year we will have a special performance of Circus Bella: now in its eleventh year, the single-ring circus troupe packs in a lot of entertainment, including trapeze, rope walking, a 9-person juggling act, contortionists and more.

Work continues apace at the fire-damaged building at 659 Union Street. | Photo: Joe Bonadio

Speaking of contortions, after lots of back-and-forth, North Beach once again has a weekly farmer’s market! We’ve been without a market here ever since construction began on the new North Beach Library, and here at the SFNBBA we’ve been working on this issue for a long time. We welcome the effort by North Beach Neighbors, which finally arranged the market in partnership with longtime SFNBBA members Piazza Pellegrini. The market makes its fourth appearance this weekend, and runs each Saturday from 9:00am to 1:00pm. With a dozen vendors that fit snugly into the lot behind Pellegrini at Filbert and Columbus, it’s already a busy locals scene, so make sure to stop by and support them.

On the more serious side, there are tentative plans in the works to close Washington Square Park for an irrigation project–for up to an entire year. Needless to say, in the wake of March’s tragic St. Patrick’s Day fire directly across the street, this is hardly a welcome development. 

The playground is already closed, but the rest of the work has to go through final approvals. Many in the neighborhood feel the work should be delayed, at least until 659 Union, the building partially destroyed by the fire, has been restored. The irrigation work is far from urgent, and can be easily delayed without negatively impacting the park, the neighborhood, or its residents. If you share our concern, we urge you to educate yourself on this issue and get involved.

In keeping with this, the Board of Directors of SFNBBA has invited a representative of SF Parks & Recreation to address these issues at our next monthly meeting. That meeting will take place this Tuesday, June 5th at 6:30pm at the U.S. Bank office at 1435 Stockton Street. We have also invited a rep from the Department of Public Works to discuss ongoing efforts to clean up our neighborhood–and all SFNBBA members are invited to attend. We look forward to seeing you there!

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A Glimpse Of What SFNBBA Does For North Beach Businesses

In keeping with our history of support and leadership for the commercial district of our neighborhood, the North Beach Business Association has assembled a quick report detailing a few of our organizational accomplishments for 2018. This is a partial list, but it will give readers some idea of the breadth of our efforts for the neighborhood.

North Beach Commercial Vacancies Prompt Action: Enough Is Enough

On Wednesday afternoon, we will join Supervisor Aaron Peskin at 527 Columbus Avenue near Green Street, where commercial units have been kept off the rental market for nearly a decade. The press will be in attendance, and Supervisor Peskin and SFNBBA board members are expected to speak about the need for these commercial landlords to do their part to restore the commercial rental supply in our neighborhood–and the well-being of our commercial district. It’s not complicated: we are simply asking that property owners offer their vacant spaces for rent, and at a reasonable market rate.

Let's Keep It Local: Your North Beach Shopping Guide

A list of eleven of the coolest possible places to do your Christmas shopping–right here in North Beach.

Wintry Weather Brings Holiday Events And More To North Beach

This Friday, December 7th, the neighborhood will once again host the North Beach Wine Walk. If you haven't participated in the event before, it's a great way to meet some of the neighborhood's best retailers; shops like Z Cioccolato, Lola and Cole Hardware will be opening their shops after normal hours, and hosting local vintners to pour samples of their tastiest wines for attendees.

The Beach Never Sleeps: New Offerings Abound

Here in North Beach, it’s been a mighty strange couple of weeks. As much as we’ve tried to focus on our labors, the smoky, toxic air conditions brought by the tragic Camp Fire to our north has admittedly knocked our neighborhood a little bit out of whack. And that’s only natural, in a place where our residents are used to spending so much time outdoors. So we're here to give you a quick review of what's been afoot.

Business Owner Recognized For Heroism; Macchiarini Design Turns Seventy

This weekend, Edson Garcia, the owner of Brioche Bakery and Café on Columbus Avenue, was honored by Supervisor Aaron Peskin and the North Beach Business Association for a remarkable act of courage. 

Washington Square Mitigation Plan Finally In Place; Meanwhile, Ten Trees Gone

If you’ve been reading the blog, you already know Washington Square Park faces temporary closure in the coming months for renovations. Here at the SFNBBA, we’ve been lobbying the city and S.F. Recreation & Park for months.

SFNBBA Wins Neighborhood Protections In Face Of Washington Square Park Closure

The impending closure of Washington Square Park has got the neighborhood stirred up, and the people at the SFNBBA have been on the case. Take a look at this week's post to find out what we've accomplished–and what you should expect for Washington Square.

Empty Spaces: New Report Sheds Light On North Beach Vacancies

The vacancy crisis in North Beach is an ongoing concern, and this month we received some new data on the problem. According to a new report conducted by the San Francisco North Beach Business Association (SFNBBA) in cooperation with Telegraph Hill Dwellers and North Beach Neighbors, the numbers are jarring: over the past three years, the number of vacant ground-floor commercial spaces in the neighborhood has doubled.

It’s Always Sunny In North Beach: North Beach Festival Weekend Is Here

The very first street fair in America, The North Beach Festival has been the blueprint for neighborhood fairs and block parties for decades. And this weekend, we're celebrating the festival for the 64th time. In other news, is there trouble on the horizon for Washington Square Park?
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Jan 23

Community Action: Resolve The Vacancy Crisis

Community Action: Resolve The Vacancy Crisis Wednesday, January 23rd @ 1:00 PM 527 Columbus Avenue, North Beach, SF (just north of Green St.)