Splash Pad News – May 2021

The Sounds of Success and Empathy
by C.J. Hirschfield – Glynn Washington is a wonder. He grew up in an apocalyptic cult, holds a law degree, and has worked as an educator, diplomat, community activist, actor, and political strategist. But it was when he beat out 1,400 entries in a National Public Radio Talent Quest in 2008 that he found the calling that takes full advantage of all of his talents—as creator, host, and executive producer of a weekly radio show and podcast called Snap Judgment: “Storytelling, with a BEAT.” First aired on NPR nationwide in 2010, it has grown into a radio/podcast/stage/television show distributed by PRX, airing on over 400 broadcast radio stations, and on eight podcast apps. Known for its real-life dramas that “drop listeners into someone else’s skin”    Continue Reading 

Lakeshore BID: Welcome to April 2021
by Kira Pascoe – Welcome, Arise Yoga! Founded and owned by a former Namaste Yoga teacher, Jillian Schiavi, Arise Yoga opened at 3229 Lakeshore Avenue in early April. Arise Yoga has small masked and distanced classes in the studio now and plans to start offering outdoor classes on its back patio in May. Arise Yoga is community-minded and has plans for monthly member events, community, and BIPOC-centered classes, hosting group art shows, and making charitable contributions to organizations whose missions center on creating equality for all. School teachers can enjoy 15% off of class packs and memberships. Gymboree is now open and invites you to join their classes. Their staff is all fully vaccinated and would love to have you join us safely on the play-floor.   Continue Reading

Grand Avenue Merchant News – May 2021
by Ken Katz – This year’s Mother’s Day (May 9) will be particularly memorable, especially for all the mothers and grandmothers out there who, due to COVID restrictions and health concerns, have been unable to see (let alone hug) their children and grandchildren for well over a year. All three of the florists on Grand (Brother & Sisters Flower ShopGrand Flowers, and Lee’s Discount Florists) are also looking forward to next weekend as an opportunity to brighten up those lives. Thursday afternoon we stopped by Lee’s Discount Florist, where we shot the above photos and visited briefly with one of the four Lee Family sisters who work full- or part-time in the shop they opened on Grand in 1992. For the time being, entry to the shop is restricted, but they are taking orders…    Continue Reading

Farmers Market Updates – May 2021
by Dan Foster – Seasonal Updates:
* Peach Farm has returned with their cucumbers and should have tomatoes soon!
* Triple Delight Blueberries have returned. Short season, get them while you can!
* True Love Nursery is selling plant starts. Short season, get them while you can! 
Lucias Pizzaria is returning Saturday 5/1!
* Moi Eats Vietnamese cuisine is starting Saturday 5/1!   Continue Reading

The Names in Lights Have a Tale to Tell: Part 1
by Ken Katz – Unlike the “Chalk Talks Festival” (the subject of our article last month), the Names in Lights panels that were installed in the Splash Pad Plaza in 2004 are discussed at some length on the SplashPad.org About page, where you’ll learn that the lettering and designs were cut into high density steel using computer-operated high-pressure water jets. You’ll also learn that the panels were part of a fundraising effort (that included T-shirts and a plaque honoring major donors) to pay for the water feature, in Walter Hood’s original plans, that was about to be scrapped. All that information is, however, restricted to a “when and how” description circa the early 2000s. This month and next, we will be reporting instead on what’s happened since to…  Continue Reading 

Odds and Ends
In late December of this past year, we published Andy Naja”Riese’s post about AIM’s “Path to Racial Equality” which focuses on food producers who are people of color who are typically marginalized. Here’s what Tom Vilsak said on the subject in interview with the Washington Post. Last month, we wrote about Oakland’s parklets. This recent Oaklandside article does the same with the focus on the current status of Flex Streets in general. 

Rotary Nature Center Friends Lakeside Chats
The Rotary Nature Center Friends, the primary stewards of the wildlife refuge at Lake Merritt, presents “What Makes a Bee a Bee. How We Can Help Them.” Presentation by Oakland native Dr. Vuong who will introduce us to the world of wild bees and honey bees & the microbes (called microbiomes) that they carry and which have co-evolved with the bees and may affect their health. Friday, May 7 from 7 – 8 pm.  So Bee there or Bee Square, Bee-cause it’s going to be great!   Register here before 6 pm that afternoon.

Oakland Rotary Club’s Civic Thursdays
May 6: Gary Meyer – “The Future of the Oscars & Movie Theaters.”
May 13: Reshma Saujani – Founder of Girls Who Code – “The Urgency of a Marshall Plan for Moms.”
May 20Bruce Quan – “Bitter Roots: Five Generations of a Chinese American Family in America.”
April 27: Shooty Babitt – “Behind the Scenes look at the Oakland A’s: Past, Present and Future.”
Contact Rotarian Isaac Kos-Read if you’d like to join as a guest on Zoom or tune in live on Facebook (or catch the “rebroadcast” on the Rotary Club of Oakland YouTube Channel). 

May 1 – May 23: The Oakland Museum White Elephant Sale goes on-line this year
May 4 – The Oakland Library presents “Kiss Your Grass Goodbye – Reinvent Your Yard
May 6 – Camron Stanford House Virtual History: “19th Century Footwear: Innovations and Origins of the Modern Day Dress Shoe.
May 7 – The African-American Museum & Library – “Enough: Say Their Names (AAMLO Meet the Authors)” 
May 8 – Oakland Library “Celebrates Asian Pacific Heritage Month – Maori Ake Tonu.” 
May 12 – Oakland Library – “Hearing Homer’s Song: the brief life and big idea of Milman Parry
May 15 – Oakland Library – “We’re Headed to Paris!” 
May 19 – Grand Lake Neighbors Virtual Meeting – 7 – 8:30 pm
May 20 – Oakland Heritage Alliance: Online Presentation: Life & Legacy of F. M. “Borax” Smith
May 22 – Oakland Main Library – Celebrate Asian Pacific Heritage Month with storyteller Alton Takiyama-Chung





One response to “Splash Pad News – May 2021”

  1. gayle sells Avatar
    gayle sells

    Hi Ken – have you seen the living plant walls at the Cava bar on Grand? Check them out! Gayle Sells Miss You!