downtown oakland
Downtown Oakland circa 1910

Posts from — September 2011

A legacy of fun

September 30, 2011

This weekend’s downtown events tie cultural and political heritage to today’s challenges and opportunities, with a healthy dose of old-fashioned fun.

The Oakland Museum presents another installation of O-Zone tonight, an arts-inspired party to celebrate the legacy of John Muir. Revolutionary rappers The Coup headline a party that includes a film screening from 10,000 Steps and a beard and mustache contest.

Oaklandish presents Fairyland for Grownups tonight, offering a rare opportunity for adults to carouse in the storybook amusement park without the usual requisite child. Advance tickets are sold out but there may be some available at the door. Rediscover your sense of childlike wonder at this fundraiser for Fairyland.

Following last night’s lectures, Top Ten Social presents another high-concept dance party tonight at the New Parish with international house-music DJs and personal stories reflecting the connections between the recent uprisings in London and socio-political conditions around the world. Also it’s a fun party.

African-Americans celebrate Western heritage at Saturday’s Black Cowboy Parade. Horsemen in their cowboy finery will parade through downtown to Frank Ogawa Plaza and continue on for an afternoon festival at West Oakland’s DeFremery Park.

This Sunday the League of Women Voters celebrates the centennial of women’s suffrage in California with a reenactment of the state’s first Suffragist parade, held in Oakland during the 1908 Republican National Convention. Don your Edwardian finery for a march around Lake Merritt – and be sure not to use the derogatory term Suffragette to describe these early crusaders for women’s rights.

And in breaking news, the Museum of Art and Digital Entertainment has found a temporary home downtown, celebrating the legacy of video game design. Find out more about this museum and its upcoming events at

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A Fall Friday brings a hot weekend

September 23, 2011

It may be the first Friday of Fall but downtown sizzles with summery events.

Moneyball premiered at the Paramount last week with a star-studded green carpet. Find out what liberties the screenwriters took with the true story of the dot-com-era A’s in this Tribune article.

For the third year the Eat Real Festival will spice up Jack London Square with a radical gourmet delights – kicking off today with ice cream and sorbet for this summery Fall day. While you’re there, stop by the Crafts section to sign a petition to legalixe food trucks throughout the city. If you’re going to bicycle to the event the East Bay Bicycle Coalition and Walk Oakland Bike Oakland are providing free valet bike parking. Saturday’s official after-party will be a new club Vitus on 2nd and Broadway.

Speaking of food and the Jack London District, check out this article about local roaster Blue Bottle’s expansion across the country in Fortune Magazine.

The 10,000 Steps project, which seeks to connect downtown’s neighborhoods with the four historic “Square” parks, has introduced a self-guided cellphone audio tour of Old Oakland and Chinatown.

See you at the food trucks!

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