Talk and thoughts on East Bay businesses and shops




If you have yet to spend time at Oakland's Jack London Square, this weekend would be an outstanding time to visit.  Traditionally, on Sundays, you will always find the Jack London Farmer's Market that features fun, music, and food of every description--fruits, vegetables and greens, nuts, baked bread and pastries, and a wide sampling of food to eat.  But that is just a start this weekend.

The artists of the East Bay Open Studios at Jack London Square are inviting you to come and see the truly amazing and varied art that they are offering for sale. Paintings, sculptures, jewelry, furniture, glasswork and photographic art will be available for purchase.  If you have just bought a home, or have a special place in your present home for a piece…

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If you are looking for a pleasant evening out, and want to support nearby small merchants and artists, the Piedmont Avenue Stroll is just for you.  Held on the third Thursday of every month, this is a neighborhood oriented event designed to attract Oakland and Piedmont residents to get to know their local businesses and artists who are, literally, just around the corner.  

Each month, participating businesses and artists invite you to visit them from 6:00-9:00 p.m.. Many offer special discounts or promotions to make your shopping experience even more worthwhile.  Late night entertainment is available as well after the promotional hours.  Those merchants participating can be identified by a bright yellow flag in front of their shop. 

There is a…

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Not too long ago, urban residents who wanted a selection of fruits and vegetables or flowers had to rely on their local supermarket as their only resource.  Since the rise of local farmers markets, just about every city in the Bay area has developed their own site for shoppers who appreciate the unique and direct from-the-farm products that are now available. 

Two of the most popular are the Grand Lake Farmers Market in the Lakeshore district, and the Montclair Farmers Market in the Montclair district of Oakland.  The Grand Lake Market is the larger of the two, and is located at the intersection of Grand Lake and Lake Park.  It is held every Saturday morning of the year from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m..  From food trucks to tiny stalls, just about every food…

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 Ballena Bay homes are beautifully located for those who literally want to have access to ocean water from a dock out their doorstep.  Many of the homes and townhouses here allow owners to step from their home directly onboard their boat that is tied up to their dock, and sail away into the Sunday sun on a pleasant weekend morning. 

Located directly across from San Francisco, with sweeping views all along the SF waterfront, and the adjacent SF Bay Bridge, the neighborhood is just a short distance from the U.S.S. Hornet at the deactivated Alameda Naval Air Station. Additionally, Ballena Bay is a truly a boater's paradise.  Besides the  berthing in the neighborhood, immediately adjacent to the homes, it is busy and handsome marina, with an active…

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With the exciting weekly and monthly activities that are scheduled all around Jack London Square and revitalized downtown Oakland there is as great deal of interest among buyers in the outstanding choices of housing in the area.  Jack London condos offer a wide variety of styles, prices and views.  The best part, no matter what home you choose, just about everything that you might need in terms of fun and community is within  walking distance for the busy resident. 

Enjoy the beautiful views as you walk along the waterfront, and make plans to shop at the weekly Farmer's Market in the Square with it's amazing variety of foods, entertainment,and crafts.  Meet with friends, and take a  ride on the nearby ferry vessel to San Francisco,and from there…

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Oakland's Trestle Glen area was built around transportation.  Before it was as you see it today, it was the heart of  railroad line which ran along Trestle Glen Creek (mostly underground, now), and was originally named Indian Gulch after the Huchiun Indians who lived in the area. That railroad ran through nearby Montclair, and back through the Oakland hills, carrying freight, passengers and tourists from 1893 to 1906 when it was rerouted and torn down. The next transportation influence to encourage growth and development was the expansion of streetcar lines which allowed homeowners in the neighborhood to travel the short distance from their newly built homes above Lakeshore Avenue to their jobs in downtown Oakland, or across the bay to San Francisco. 

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With so many hip new cultural events taking place here in the East Bay, and now more than ever here specifically in Oakland, it can be tough to pick what event to check out. There really has been a renaissance in Oakland,

with a total revitalization culturally, as an explosion of food, art, music and all types of expression have arrived on the scene.  From Art Murmur to the new Gourmet Ghetto in Oakland's Temescal district, one is not for want when yearning for a bit of the good stuff.  As a native growing up in the late 70's and early 80's, I remember Oakland in general, including downtown Oakland, Jack London Square, and the Temescal, as very deserted, like a ghost town. To see my city thriving now, and to encounter yet another awesome business or…

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If there was ever a small town neighborhood within a larger town, it would be the Glenview District, in Oakland.  Located adjacent to the the Trestle Glen and Oakmore neighborhoods, it, like all small towns, has it's "main street" --in this case, Park Boulevard--which is filled with local shops and small merchants that serve the needs of its residents.  For most of these residents, these amenities are within walking or biking distance.  Many of the restaurant in the small complex are highly rated, the market is handy and well stocked, and an excellent coffee shop attracts Saturday and Sunday morning get togethers among friends.

Developed the 1920's and 1930's along the trolley lines running up and down Park Boulevard, it grew, as the areas around it…

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In Oakland, California, there is a neighborhood tucked into the hills called Montclair.  It is one of the most heavily forested neighborhoods in the city.  It reminds a visitor of Tahoe with its winding tree lined streets.  Views of San Francisco are available peaking through the trees at many locations, especially  among those Montclair view homes that are perched high atop the many canyons that are found descending from the high hills above. 

Immediately adjacent to the city of Piedmont on one side, and Oakland's Woodminster and Oakmore neighborhoods, it is the location of Montclair Village-an  enclave of small shops, and excellent restaurants which are visited by Oakland residents from throughout the city.  To add to the food flavor, the Village…

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While Oakland's Jack London Square is always busy with events for people of all ages, this week is especially active.  The weather is going to be warm and inviting, and the views across to San Francisco are always pleasant at any time of the year.  In the last few years, the Square has become one of the major social centers of a reviving Oakland downtown. It is visited by boaters, by tourists off the latest San Francisco ferry which stops there, and young couples with their children arriving from all over the area. For the more adventurous, they can choose to  rent a kayak, and get out on the water on their own. 

Located at the foot of Broadway, here are some things that are scheduled for this week on the Square:


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