Samantha Masunaga

Gearing up: A look at the OPD consultant panel

In part two of a four-part series that will be published over the course of two weeks on Oakland North, meet the six new police consultants who have just been hired by Oakland to help reduce crime citywide. Each member of the panel has a different task and will be evaluating Oakland for a period of six months and before the panel makes its recommendations to the city. Robert Wasserman Robert Wasserman is a national law enforcement and security expert and the…

After shooting, First Friday organizers discuss how to keep future events safe

Nearly a week after the post-First Friday festival shooting that killed 18-year-old Kiante Campbell and wounded 3 others, event organizers say they’re waiting for a cue from the city about how to proceed. City of Oakland officials have called a meeting with the festival’s key stakeholders for Thursday to examine ways to keep future events safe. The art festival that takes over swaths of downtown Oakland on the first Friday of each month started as a humble gallery walk in…

At Linden Street, West Oakland Brewery brings back Californian brewing tradition

The Linden Street Brewery is small and unpretentious, but its owners are proud of their brewing tradition, which goes back to the early 1800’s, when settlers from Germany first made Oakland their home.
The West Coast tradition of brewing, or the California lager, is a steam-brewed ale that is made at a temperature closer to that of lagers. This method creates a “hoppy, more bitter taste”, says Andrew Ritter, lead brewer at Linden Street.

Astro Park doggy area decision delayed at city council meeting

For almost 12 years, residents and city officials have debated whether to section off nearly 20,000 square feet of Astro Park at the corner of MacArthur Boulevard and Lakeshore Avenue to create a run for off-leash dogs or leave the area “green.” During Tuesday night’s council meeting, hundreds showed up wearing yellow and black paw prints on their shirts to show support for the park, while others brought signs that said “Not Sustainable.”

Oakland joins nation in mourning Twinkie after Hostess bankruptcy

When word spread that there was half a box of Twinkies still on a shelf at the A&A Market on Sunday afternoon, people of all ages gathered to get their hands on a small cellophane-wrapped piece of what was left of the Hostess legacy, and reflected on what the Twinkie—the “snack with a snack in the middle,” as the ads used to say–meant to them.

Lawsuit adds to comedian Katt Williams’ troubled time in Oakland

Cherilynn Abaye, who purchased four tickets to the Katt Williams comedy show at the Oakland Oracle Arena last Friday night, says she was excited to see him perform. But after a string of bizarre events onstage that included Williams confronting a heckler in the crowd, Williams taking his own clothes off and Williams trying to fight at least three audience members, the act ended after just 10 minutes, leaving Abaye furious.

Meet the Oakland City Council candidates: an interactive map

With four Oakland districts and the Council At-Large seat up for grabs, 25 candidates have all entered the race to join Oakland’s City Council. The following map lists every candidate running in each district, a photo of each candidate, and a brief statement—provided by the candidate—about his or her key goals.

City Attorney candidates discuss injunctions, medical marijuana and public safety

This year, voters must choose whether to give a full four-year term to current City Attorney Barbara Parker or to longtime District 1 Councilmember Jane Brunner, both familiar faces in Oakland politics. When Oakland voters nixed Measure H in 2011, they decided how the city would select a city attorney this year. Until 1998, city officials appointed someone to the office, but under that year’s “strong mayor” initiative, the position became an elected one, which was held by John Russo…

Oakland sues U.S. government to stop Harborside medical marijuana seizures

The city of Oakland filed a complaint Wednesday against the federal government in order to stop officials from seizing the nation’s largest medical marijuana dispensary, claiming the government took too long to take legal action against Harborside Health Center and that the federal statute of limitations regarding seizures has expired.

Supporters “Swim A Mile” for women’s cancer research

Sporting a pink scarf around her newly shaved head and a black baseball cap with pink rhinestone accents, Debra Hagan watched her sister swim Saturday afternoon.

Hagan, who was recently diagnosed with cancer, was moved to tears as she supported her sister at the 17th annual Swim A Mile for Women with Cancer. “I’m here as her cheerleader,” Hagan said. “I’m not a swimmer, but I can sure can cheer her on.”