downtown oakland
Downtown Oakland circa 1910

Category — shopping

Early Xmas gift for cyclists

December 16, 2011

This morning bicycle, pedestrian, transit and business advocates celebrated the installation of 18.1 miles of City-wide bike infrastructure, including long-awaited lanes on Franklin and Webster Streets, connecting downtown’s neighborhoods. Full disclosure: I am a Board Member of Walk Oakland Bike Oakland, which sponsored the press conference in partnership with the East Bay Bicycle Coalition. By the time you read this the lanes will have been fully painted – get out and enjoy them!

While Old Oakland’s Pop Up Hood is going strong, and inspiring entrepreneurs throughout Oakland despite the poor economy, Uptown is getting in on the holiday shopping action with a temporary gift fair this weekend at the Betti Ono Gallery (1804 Telegraph) across the street from the Fox Theater. The holiday shopping extravaganza with local artisans and manufacturers kicks off tonight with a party from 7 to 10pm, and continues all weekend from 11am-5pm in conjunction with the Uptown Stroll, when local bars, restaurants and shops (including EntreZ and Feelmore510) offer holiday discounts. And in the spirit of the season, a portion of the proceeds will benefit Covenant House, an organization that works with homeless youth.

There are other great opportunities to contribute downtown. Tonight, The Uptown Nightclub (1928 Telegraph Ave) will waive its cover charge for a donation of a new, unwrapped toy to the Mayor’s Toy Drive. If you come downtown for business, consider bringing canned food to donate to the Alameda County Food Bank, which has donation drop-offs in the lobbies of most office buildings. The Food Bank can stretch your dollars further because of bulk purchasing, so also consider making a cash donation, which you can do online at

Happy holidays!

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Tis the Season to Shop

December 2, 2011

It’s the First Friday of December, when artistic and cultural events are joined by local shopping opportunities as merchants try to shake off economic disruptions to offer gifts to Oaklanders who want to support local artisans and entrepreneurs. A full suite of holiday shopping and events can be found in downtown Oakland this weekend.

First Friday art highlights in Uptown include Pretty Pretty, an exhibition of pop culture ephemera reworked into unusual sculpture, at the Hatch Gallery (492 23rd St); Amanda N Simons’s gender-questioning visual artwork at Feelmore510 (1703 Telegraph); and Art vs. Food, an indoor celebration of street food and street art at the New Commodity (474 24th St), featuring a half-dozen food vendors and a dozen muralists. In the spirit of the season, tonight Art vs Food will accept unwrapped presents for Oakland’s Community Toy Drive, and Feelmore510 is offering free flu shots and HIV screenings.

Jack London Square is holding a holiday pop-up market with many vendors, benefitting Wardrobe for Opportunity, and holds their annual tree-lighting ceremony tonight. The Pop-Up Market is in the Jack London Market, 55 Harrison St.

Old Oakland’s Pop Up Hood, a great destination for urbane gift-shopping, is featured in today’s local edition of the New York Times. As you shop local this holiday season, don’t forget about the Oakland Grown gift card!

New Uptown watering hole Make Westing is featured in the Chronicle after the debut of their food menu.

Super-fun party rap group Hottub holds their record release party at Vitus, tonight at 9pm, 201 Broadway.


America’s Children’s Holiday Parade, a nationally-televised spectacle could be characterized as the PBS version of the Macy’s Parade, kicks off on Broadway and 11th at 2pm.

The Museum of Art and Digital Entertainment debuts its first exhibit today, on the History of 3D. Watch a promotional video here. The exhibit opens today at noon and runs for a month. 610 16th St Ste 230.

Jack London Square hosts the annual Lighted Yacht Parade at sundown.


Bouchrie Marketplace at La Borinquena (582 7th St at Jefferson) collaborates with Boucherie to bring holiday food and gifts shopping to an Old Oakland mainstay.

With so many opportunities to be a spectator, a shopper, or a giver, this weekend will be one to remember. See you at the Holiday Parade!

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