Vanessa Rancaño

Dr. Comics store welcomes novices and serious buffs alike

Michael Pandolfo’s childhood comic store was dark, dingy, and intimidating. He remembers the shop was full of the condescending comic book fans he calls “rules lawyers”—comic book experts who show disdain for non-experts. It wasn’t a welcoming place for any but the most shunned, resentful reader. This old store, where he bought his first issues of Conan the Barbarian, loomed large in his mind when he opened his own comic shop Dr. Comics & Mr. Games on Piedmont Avenue in…

This Weekend in Oakland

Community events and activities for the weekend of November 16-18, 2012. Got an event we didn’t know about? Please add it in the comments! Friday, November 16 Secret of the Rocket 11 am, noon, 3:30 pm Chabot Space & Science Center, 10000 Skyline Blvd. Oakland Two young adventurers turn an old cardboard box into a rocket and with the help of a magical book and their vivid imaginations blast off on a journey to the many places in the Solar…

The vote is in: Victory for Kalb, Kaplan, Gallo and Parker; A1 and B1 fail

After several rounds of ranked choice balloting, Oakland and Alameda County election returns are in. In the Oakland at-large contest, after five rounds of balloting, incumbent Rebecca Kaplan secured a victory with 60.74 percent of the vote, while current District 5 representative Ignacio De La Fuente took second with 39.26 percent. Speaking late Tuesday night, Kaplan’s spokesperson Jason Overman called her win “a very decisive victory.” “The voters of Oakland have spoken to move Oakland forward. They chose a record of…

Indie films star at Oakland Underground Film Festival

This weekend’s Oakland Underground Film Festival (OUFF) showcases local, independent films and new international works. The four-day festival begins Thursday at the Grand Lake Theater and continues at two other venues throughout the weekend. About 60 films will be screened, a mix of shorts, features and documentaries.

Oakland businesses help CommonWealth pub rebound after fire

After a July 8 fire forced CommonWealth Café and Pub’s owners to close their business for repairs, other Oakland bar and restaurant owners stepped in to help. In the months since the fire CommonWealth’s owners have collaborated with a number of these local businesses on food and beer events that have benefited the pub and kept their employees working.

Freedom House musical performance explores social issues in Oakland

Freedom House: Dancing in the Flatlands is a new performance work by Claudine Naganuma. The piece will be shown three times at East Oakland’s EastSide Cultural Center this weekend, starting with an 8 p.m. performance Friday night. Naganuma is the director of Danspace, a dance studio in Rockridge, and the founder of the dance company dNaga, which will be performing the piece.

Writer Wendy-O Matik discusses unconventional love at Bay Area LadyFest

The small, high-ceilinged gallery was barely big enough for the turnout Friday night. The modest rows of folding chairs easily filled, and then people found space on the paint-smudged concrete floor wherever they could. Some crouched on the stairs, others stood in the back, but everybody listened, because this was a presentation about love.

New book offers a supporter’s take on Ron Dellums’ tenure as Oakland mayor

Years after serving as education director for then-Mayor Ron Dellums, professor Kitty Kelly Epstein aims to recast the controversial mayorship in a new book. “Organizing to Change a City,” released at the end of August, tells the story from a supporter’s view. It describes the community effort that secured Dellums’ victory and defends his tenure – all part of advancing Epstein’s contention that grass roots change is possible, even in a city as complicated as Oakland.