Tonight: Celebrate the Gorgeous New Mural on Mission Street


As you may have noticed, there’s a fantastic new mural on Mission Street in La Lengua. It was painted on a wall facing the fashionable Bank of America parking lot between Valencia and 29th Streets, and it was created by artist Amanda Lynn.

Neighbor Eden from Secession Art & Design is also president of the Mission-Bernal Merchants Association, and she invites one and all to an event happening tonight to celebrate the new mural:

Please join us this Tuesday, August 23rd, 6-8pm, in the Bank of America parking lot between Valencia and 29th St to meet mural artist Amanda Lynn, who created our beautiful new mural inspired by her childhood. The theme was “Pursue Growth and Happiness.”

3300 Club will be selling their t-shirts to help them reopen, and Bliss Pops will be giving away popsicles to the first 100 supporters. Thank you to Zappos and Beautify Earth for choosing our neighborhood as one of eight US cities to donate a mural.

You may have noticed the billboard on this wall is hyper-local. Mission Bernal Merchants Association has taken it over for the next year. Our first billboard by artist Jonathan Koshi was a fundraiser for the merchants impacted in the 3300 Block fire in June. The MBMA, with a lot of community support, raised $16,000 for these merchants. We’re so pleased to have our neighborhood come together and celebrate each other.

Stop by and say hello!

PHOTO: Telstar Logistics

Tuesday: Community Meeting About 9-Story, 96-Unit Housing Development on Shotwell

Rendering of 1296 Shotwell, as seen from Cesar Chavez. Source: MEDA, April 2016

On Tuesday,  August 23 at 6 pm, the Mission Economic Development Agency (MEDA) will hold a community meeting at the Bernal Heights Neighborhood Center to reveal their latest designs for 96 units of subsidized-affordable senior citizen housing at 1296 Shotwell, just north of Cesar Chavez. There’s also a focus group scheduled for Monday, August 29.  Here are the two upcoming events:

  • Community Meeting: Tuesday, August 23, 6pm to 7:30 at BHNC, 515 Cortland
  • Focus Group: Monday, August 29, 6pm to 7:30pm, Precita Eyes Mural Center, 348 Precita Avenue

Right now, 1296 Shotwell is a one story warehouse-style space used for automotive repair. As proposed, the site would become a 9-story building to provide 100% subsidized-affordable housing for senior citizens.


1296 Shotwell, typical floorplans. Source: MEDA, April 2016

The proposed building would not include any parking, and it would rise 85′ from street level, or 20 feet higher than permitted under current zoning.

Source: San Francisco Planning Department

Source: San Francisco Planning Department

1296 Shotwell sits right next door to 1515 South Van Ness, the proposed six-story development approved in a unanimous 6-0 vote by the San Francisco Planning Commission earlier this month. As approved, 1515 South Van Ness will provide 157 units of mixed-income housing, with 25% set aside as subsidized-affordable.

During a contentious community meeting about 1296 Shotwell held last April, some Bernal neighbors objected to the proposed height of the building, which would rise five or six stories above most other nearby buildings. Others objected to the proposed design, which included an 85′ perforated concrete slab on the building’s south side, facing Bernal Hill.

Rendering of 1296 Shotwell, as seen from Coso/Stoneman in North Bernal. Source: MEDA

Rendering of 1296 Shotwell, seen from Coso/Stoneman in North Bernal. Source: MEDA, April 2016

MEDA has suggested the Bernal-facing slab could be covered by a mural, but in the bilingual workshop sessions held during March’s community meeting, neighbors were unenthusiastic about the mural concept, pointing out that south-facing murals tend to disintegrate  quickly because of the harsh sun. One neighbor said the mural proposal was “basically the definition of putting lipstick on a pig.”

MEDA tells Bernalwood a revised design for the project will be on display at the meeting on Tuesday. However, despite repeated requests, MEDA declined to provide renderings of the updated proposal in advance of Tuesday’s meeting.

Personally, I would like to see 1296 Shotwell built at the proposed height, with the proposed number of housing units. I live a block from 1296 Shotwell, about 400 feet away, and the building will be in the direct line of sight from my house.  The new building will definitely obscure part of my glamorous skyline view, but I don’t care that much about losing some of my glamorous skyline view, because San Francisco desperately needs more, higher-density housing of all kinds to make housing more affordable to more San Franciscans. But that’s just me, and I’m on record as a YIMFY — Yes In My Front Yard.

That said, 1296 Shotwell would likely benefit from an improved design for the south facade, so that the 9000+ neighbors who live on Bernal’s north slope will feel better about gazing upon it for decades to come. We’ll find out what MEDA has in mind at the Big Reveal, 6 pm on Tuesday night at BHNC.

Front Porch Celebrates 10 Year Anniversary With Street Party


Yesterday, the Front Porch restaurant on 29th Street in the La Lengua Autonomous Zone celebrated its 10th Anniversary. Blessedly, even after a decade, neither the primal forces of time nor fire have been able to stop the southern-fried deliciousness that is the Front Porch.

Rebel propagandist Burrito Justice was on the scene for the festivities, and he reported:

The back yards of La Lengua [are] echoing with the sounds of horns and drums and cheering from the Front Porch… Whatever you want to call it, this neighborhood does not suck.

So true. Check out this little video to get a taste of the scene:

Big congrats to Team Front Porch on the anniversary, and thanks for all the good food and warm community you’ve brought to 29th Street.

PHOTOS AND VIDEO: Courtesy of @BurritoJustice

Saturday: Here Is Your Official 2016 Hillwide Garage Sale Treasure Map


This is your moment, Bernal Heights craphounds treasure-hunters!

That magical time of year is here. On Saturday, August 13, you should stuff your pockets with wads of petty cash and load that bootlegged copy of Amazon Prime’s route-optimization software onto your smartphone. The 2016 Bernal Hillwide Garage Sale starts at 9 am on Saturday , so it’s time to map out your plan of attack!

Here’s the latest update from the magical elves in the Hillwide Garage Sale Command Center:

Total Garages Registered = 122
Total Funds Raised = $2790

Thanks to everyone for rallying to the cause, we’ve raised almost $1000 in additional donations for BHNC in the last 5 days. That is something to be proud of🙂

It’s definitely not too late to join the party that will descend on the [Saturday] tomorrow morning at 9am.

CLICK HERE to register for the Hillwide and The Elves will be working their magic to get you on The Map in plenty of time.

You can register as late as midnight tonight (Friday August 12th).

AND, if we can raise just $275 more we will break our record-breaking-year from last year. Just by a few dollars, but it would feel SO good!

Emperor Norton Wants YOU in the Bernal Heights Hillwide Garage Sale


It’s just a week away! The shabbily-chic Bernal Heights Hillwide Garage Sale happens on Saturday, August 13.

That means now is the time to register your home if you want to appear on the fashionable Hillwide Garage Sale Treasure Map, Bernal’s own who’s-who of post-consumer purging.

And remember, Emperor Norton will be watching. The Hillwide elves tell Bernalwood:

This year, the World Famous, Bernal’s own Emperor Norton, will be judging the “Best of Bernal” Hillwide Award!.

The Emperor will be looking for the garage that exemplifies the spirit of the Hillwide: Somewhat irreverent, curiously clever, a darn good time and open to everyone.

Since he’s a very busy Emperor, he’ll be rendering judgement via his mobile device from an undisclosed location. To enter, take as many photos as you like and post them on Instagram and/or Facebook. Don’t forget to tag your pics #Hillwide2016 so we can find them. The more creative the images, the better!

And be sure to include the address of your sale as well – this is an EXCELLENT marketing tool to attract even more buyers to your neck of the woods! Because everyone wants to shop at the best garage sale!

The winner will receive the “Best of Bernal” trophy designed and crafted by the youth program of the BHNC. You will also receive immediate gratification and social media fame knowing that your garage typifies the very Best of Bernal. Just imagine how much more your kids/spouse/dog/goldfish will love you know that you have achieved a certain level of notoriety!

As always, 100% of donations received for the Hillwide registration go to the Bernal Heights Neighborhood Center. Sign your garage up at

PHOTO: Emperor Norton spotted on Cortland Avenue, by Telstar Logistics

Tonight: First Anniversary Celebration at the Old Bus Tavern


Wow. It’s been a year already!

Tonight, Monday, Aug. 1, the critically acclaimed and positively delightful Old Bus Tavern at 3193 Mission (@ Valencia) celebrates its first year in business . Co-owner Bennet Buchanan brings news about the festivities:

Opening a neighborhood restaurant/brewery has allowed us to meet so many cool people in this city, many of whom live right here in Bernal. Also, despite all the warnings, we’ve learned that it is in fact possible to go into business with your best friends and remain as close as ever.

We want to invite all our neighbors to our combined Old Bus Tavern’s First Anniversary + Jerry Day Party on Monday, August 1st. We’ll be open from 5-10pm with live, Grateful Dead-inspired music from The Incubators (regulars at Terrapin Crossroads in San Rafael) from 6-9pm.

We’re going to offer the following Dead-inspired menu:

  • Grateful Bread………Buckwheat Cornbread with salted honey-miso butter and chives
  • (Green and) Brown-Eyed Women………Marinated Olives with rosemary, garlic and lemon zest
  • New Potato Caboose………Steak Fries with beef salt and garlic aioli
  • Fire on the Mountain………spicy Chili with pequin
    The Pizza Tapes………Cherry Tomato Salad with brioche, burrata and charred pepper vinaigrette
  • Just Noodlin’………Spaetzel with brassicas, maitake mushrooms, whole grain mustard cream and Aztec Fuji apples
  • Homemade Cherry Garcia Ice Cream Sundae………slightly “Sugaree”

PHOTO: From left, Old Bus Tavern partners (and still friends) John Zirinsky, Jimmy Simpson, and Bennett Buchanan. Courtesy of Old Bus Tavern.

Saturday: Benefit Sale at Secession for Fire-Damaged Mission Street Merchants


This Saturday, July 30, your glamorous Neighbor Eden Stein from Secession Art & Design on Mission Street is hosting a benefit party for merchants impacted by last month’s devastating Cole Hardware Fire.

Neighbor Eden says:

Please join us on Saturday, July 30th, 4-8pm for a neighbor and merchant mixer/fundraiser/Cole Hardware pickup party at Secession Art & Design, 3235 Mission Street.

The 3300 Club will be here selling their limited edition t-shirts, Cole Hardware will be pouring their Cutting Edge wine, Fire Pie has donated pizza and lots of neighbors will be stopping by to show some community love & support. Thanks to everyone who ordered online from Cole Hardware to pick up at the party!

The Mission Bernal Merchant Association and Bernal Business Alliance are excited to host the party and come together to raise funds for the June 18th Fire Merchant Relief Fundraiser. You can donate to the fund in person, or online. Thank you, however you choose to support.

We look forward to seeing you at the party!

PHOTO: 3300 block of Mission Street after the fire. Photo by Jonathan Koshi via MBMASF