Small businesses and plans for a parklet breathe new life into 40th Street

A parklet is slated to be built in front of Subrosa Coffee and Manifesto Bicycles, and will continue a trend of new business and innovation that 40th Street has enjoyed over the last few years. There’s a record store, a restaurant, and even a new fresh produce market where there used to be only office spaces and an excess of abandoned buildings.

Oakland gears up for the 7th Annual Walk to End Poverty

On the morning of Saturday, May 19, Oaklanders will participate in the 7th Annual Walk to End Poverty. The event is hosted by the Alameda County-Oakland Community Action Partnership (AC-OCAP), and is one of many initiatives in Oakland and nearby communities that the partnership is spearheading to combat hunger, staggering unemployment rates, and homelessness.

Through FoodPool, gardeners donate excess produce to those in need

Some Oaklanders grow a bounty of fresh produce in their home gardens, while others are miles away from the nearest grocery store. One day, as he was tending his 800 square-foot backyard garden, this paradox struck Montclair resident Andrew Sigal as particularly unfair. Sigal decided that he would donate any excess food he produced, and he would try to convince his neighbors with gardens to do the same.

Oakland Food Policy Council fights for access, an equitable food system

The Oakland Food Policy Council is an organization dedicated to developing a local food system that can feed all citizens of the city in a healthy, sustainable way. The 21-seat council, which was established in 2005 with seed money from the city, meets monthly to work on initiatives that address some of Oakland’s most pressing food concerns, like poor nutrition, access to fresh produce and antiquated laws.

Local filmmakers premiere their work at Oakland International Film Festival

In it’s tenth consecutive year, the 2012 Oakland International Film Festival starts today and runs through Sunday with an exciting line-up of films, many of them created in Oakland. Two new local filmmakers, one who directed a 6-minute comedy and another who produced a documentary on a legendary Oakland piano bar, will be premiering their films on Saturday as part of the festival.

Delicious Nutritious delivers healthy meals to employees at local businesses

Every weeknight, while the rest of the city sleeps, the kitchen crew at Delicious Nutritious bustles around an industrial-sized kitchen in West Oakland. They’re getting an early start on the day, cooking the nutrient-rich, low fat breakfasts and lunches that the company delivers to participating businesses around the East Bay and Oakland.

The Night Light brightens the bar scene near Jack London Square

The Night Light lives up to its name. The brand new watering hole, which opened its doors on Broadway in Jack London Square about two weeks ago, is a bright spot when the sun goes down—a place where Oaklanders can gather on comfortable bar stools and enjoy smart cocktails and local beers.

At Children’s Hospital Oakland, the brave go bald for childhood cancer research

On Saturday, 44-year-old Irma Lira will walk onto a stage at Children’s Hospital Oakland, sit in a barber’s chair, and have her head shaved. Cheers will ring out as her thick black tresses, and her full, curled set of bangs, fall to the floor. A hat for donations will pass through the lively crowd, and people will eagerly fill it with money. And Lira won’t be alone—about 200 people will be shorn clean to benefit childhood cancer research through an organization called St. Baldrick’s.

“Ready, Set, Grow” jobs forum spotlights employment in health and food industries

Discussions of food, community well being, and employment intersected in West Oakland on Wednesday at the city’s first “Ready, Set, Grow” event, a forum on jobs in sustainable food systems and health. Put on by the Alliance for Oakland’s Food Systems, which is headed up by People’s Grocery, the event brought together a who’s-who of Oakland’s non-profits that are hiring, and people looking for work to help them prepare for and find jobs.

At Actual Cafe, Bicycle Bingo promotes fun and a good cause

On Thursday night at Actual Café, a stationery vintage Schwinn sat prominently at one end of the room. A bingo cage was strapped behind the seat, and rigged so riding the bike spun it and sent bingo balls spinning down its chute. Steffy Sue, hostess extraordinaire with a jet-black bob and blunt bangs, read out the numbers. “B1,” she said. “Be onnne with the universe.” The crowd giggled, and hastily placed markers on the cards in front of them. This is Bicycle Bingo, and it’s not your grandma’s game.

A conversation with Oakland chef and activist Bryant Terry

Oakland-based chef, author and activist Bryant Terry has a way with food. In his newest cookbook, “The Inspired Vegan,” he continues a longtime quest to bring flavor-intense but nutritionally rich eats to a larger audience, and to have a little fun while he’s at it.

Oakland Museum exhibits work by Bay Area jewelry pioneer Margaret De Patta

If you’ve got a thing for chunky but understated rings, oversized pendants, or funky pins, you have Margaret De Patta to thank. The Bay Area artist, who modernized the art of jewelry making with her one-of-a-kind creations from the 1930s to the 1960s, is being honored in the exhibition “Space-Light-Structure: The Jewelry of Margaret De Patta,” at the Oakland Museum of California.

Yu Ming Charter School offers Mandarin immersion education in Oakland

At Yu Ming School in Oakland’s Chinatown on a recent Thursday morning, a teacher writes on the board in slow lettering, and an eager bunch of students slowly sounds out the words in a collective chirp. Unlike most other kindergarten classrooms across the country, though, the writing isn’t in English, or even in Spanish. It’s in Chinese characters.

Asian Health Services to build new clinic after closure of Silver Dragon Restaurant

As the era of a storied Oakland Chinatown restaurant comes to an end, a new stage will be ushered in for the community’s access to healthcare. Silver Dragon, the banquet hall and restaurant at 9th and Webster Streets, is set to close in the coming months. The iconic building will become home to a brand new, state-of-the-art medical clinic run by community organization Asian Health Services.