One of the Bay Area’s main attractions is its proximity to nature. Only 45 minutes separate Bay Area residents from arriving at the ocean, the mountains, or a hiking trail. But not everybody experiences the Bay Area’s natural beauty.
San Francisco rapper Adam Vida pairs his songs with video that often goes viral, including one shot spontaneously at the riots that followed the San Francisco Giants 2010 World Series win. In this installment of Bay Area Beats, Adam Vida talks about the evolution of his sound.
Bayview has long been known as San Francisco’s industrial hub. But on Yosemite Street there’s an imposing brick building with a dance studio. Inside the space there's a group of young people who climb on pieces of welded iron that hang three feet off the ground. They run and mess around with each other during breaks. But their joviality turns to concentration when they get in the air. Up there they’re spinning, floating, and thriving.
San Francisco's reputation as one of America's most ethnically diverse cities is in question as its African Americans population erodes. In 1990, 11% of city residents were Black. Now that number is just 6% and is expected to drop below 4% by 2020.
For over a decade, Oakland has attempted to abate the illegal dumping of mattresses, electronics, furniture, and other large items onto city streets. The phenomenon is a problem throughout the Bay Area, but noticeably worse in Oakland.
In 2008, artist William Rhodes moved to San Francisco from Baltimore. Immediately after arriving, he noticed the exodus of Black folks leaving the city and decided to co-found the Three Point Nine Collective in an attempt to bring together the city's Black artists. He speaks with KALW's Todd Whitney about one of his works of art.
Earlier this month, a police officer in South Carolina was arrested for murder, after a video of him shooting an unarmed black man at a traffic stop was released. This arrest follows a year of high profile police shootings of black men, shootings that led to protests and discussions about race in Oakland --- like Black Brunch and the Black Lives Matter campaign. But in many ways, we are just joining a conversation that’s been going on for a while. Oakland's Mia McKenzie has been writing about black, brown and queer identity in her blog Black Girl Dangerous since 2011.
Turning on your faucet may be easy, but the process of getting you that water is anything but. Water has a long journey to get to your tap, often starting in the mountains, traveling through aqueducts, and stopping over in reservoirs along the way. The reservoirs that hold our water can sometimes take on a life of their own, supporting whole ecosystems of animals and plants.
Jennifer Piallat has worked in most every aspect of the restaurant industry – dishwasher, waitstaff, chef, manager – and those experiences have informed her decisions as owner of Zazie, a popular bistro in San Francisco's Cole Valley. Her employees receive a living wage, and benefits, and she's testified about her philosophies and process before the U.S. Department of Labor.
In the late 1990s and early 2000s, San Francisco passed a variety of measures to help low wage workers try to keep up with the rising cost of living. The city now has the highest minimum wage in the country at 10 dollars 74 cents an hour. It also requires employers to either provide health benefits or pay into a pool so the city can cover their health care costs.
After serving time in the Air Force, Nathan Baxter, an African American man from Pennsylvania, ended up in the South in the 1960s. Baxter learned a lot of lessons during and after his service – one of which was how difficult it could be to be a black man in the South at that time. He stopped by mobile Storycorps booth in Oakland to share some never-told experiences with his descendants.
City Hall isn’t the only place you will find Oakland’s namesake, the oak tree. Step foot in the East Bay and you will quickly come across t-shirts, hoodies, hats, and stickers that brandish an image of the iconic tree. This wave of Oakland-themed apparel reaches back to the year 2000 when Oaklandish, a civic pride apparel brand, popped up.