Noe Valley Voice September 2007

Short Takes

By Erin O'Briant

Music in Noe Courts, Take Four

Join your neighbors for a day of food, music, and fun in a jumpy tent, at the fourth annual Music in the Park. Sponsored by the Friends of Noe Valley, the free fundraiser is scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 8, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., at Noe Courts Park.

The School of the Arts All-Star Rock Band, the blues band the Jakes, and Noe Valley singer and songwriter Geoff Wilcox will provide musical entertainment. Food and drink, including burgers, hot dogs, wine, beer, and soft drinks, will be available for a donation, and all profits go toward spiffing up the park.

Attendees can also find out about upcoming park plans and donate to a variety of worthy causes, including the renovation of the Noe Valley­Sally Brunn Library on Jersey Street. Noe Courts Park is located at 24th and Douglass streets.

Fruits and Veggies for Pickup on Duncan

Noe Valley resident Lisa Rogovin has begun hosting a pickup location for Frog Hollow Farm's Community Supported Agriculture Program. "I'm a believer in shopping at farmers' markets if at all possible as a way to support local farmers," she says. "By participating in CSA, you're basically doing this same thing."

Neighborhood residents and merchants can now pick up weekly or semiweekly boxes of seasonal organic fruits and vegetables from Frog Hollow Farm at Rogovin's house, which is on Duncan Street between Diamond and Douglass streets. The weekly drop-off date was being firmed up in August. The boxes of produce cost between $20 and $39 each, depending on the size of the box.

For more information about Frog Hollow Farm, visit or call 888-779-4511. To contact Rogovin, e-mail

Award-Winning Writers at Ministry

The Odd Mondays Series will feature two San Francisco Asian-American writers, Jay Ruben Dayrit and Brian Komei Dempster, reading their poems and essays at a free event on Monday, Sept. 17, 7 p.m., at the Noe Valley Ministry, 1021 Sanchez Street.

Both writers have received artist grants from the San Francisco Arts Commission and have been published in literary magazines and anthologies. Dempster is the editor of From Our Side of the Fence: Growing Up in America's Concentration Camps and teaches at the University of San Francisco. Dayrit, who is originally from the Federated State of Micronesia, has studied creative writing at San Francisco State University and playwriting at Yale University.

Before the reading, participants are welcome to join a no-host dinner at 5:30 p.m. at Noe Valley Pizza, 3898 24th Street. To reserve a space at the dinner table, e-mail

The Odd Mondays series offers free community events on odd-numbered Mondays. To find out more, visit

Savage Mystery Takes Center Stage

Longtime Noe Valleyan Hal Savage has a new play, The Chinese Angle, which will be performed this month at the San Francisco Playhouse. The story takes place in a Chinatown nightclub in 1938, a setting inspired by the famous club Forbidden City.

"The title of the play derives from '30s police slang, referring to a sudden turn or weird twist in a case," explains Savage. "It's also a play on words, inviting the audience to try to see things from a Chinese perspective or angle."

Savage's wife, Cynthia Gregory, is the play's producer and his creative partner in the project. After moving furniture on and off stage for him during a production several years ago, she challenged him to create a full-length mystery without many set or costume changes. The two of them were soon plotting The Chinese Angle.

Performances take place Thursdays through Saturdays from Sept. 6 to Oct. 13, except for a 2 p.m. matinee on Saturday, Sept. 22. The play is in Theatre 2 at the Playhouse, 533 Sutter Street between Powell and Mason streets. For more information, visit The cost is $15 to $20, with discounts for seniors and students. To purchase tickets, go to www

Seniors Always Active on 30th Street

A program designed to help seniors stay fit and healthy, which originated at Noe Valley's On Lok 30th Street Senior Services, is expanding throughout San Francisco. The Always Active program has been awarded $200,000 by the San Francisco Department of Aging and Adult Services to offer services at 10 locations.

The program provides cardiovascular exercise and strength training as well as activities that develop flexibility and balance, according to Valorie Villela, director of 30th Street Senior Services. "We have found this program so effective at our center over the past seven years, we're really excited about seeing it expand and benefit many more seniors," she says.

Classes will be held in English, Spanish, and Cantonese, and participants must submit a health clearance from their doctors. A new Always Active session began on Saturday, Sept. 1, says On Lok spokesperson Jesse Waters, but participants are welcome to join in at any time. The local program is at 225 30th Street. For more information, call 550-2210.

Classic Car Show to Benefit AIDS Program

The Freewheelers Car Club will rev the engines of classic car lovers by holding its 23rd annual Charity Car Show in the newly renovated Eureka Valley Playground at 19th and Collingwood streets. The event will take place Sunday, Sept. 16, from 11 a.m. until 4 p.m.

During the festivities, awards will be given to car owners in several categories, including Favorite Color, Favorite Interior, Beneficiary's Choice, San Francisco Recreation and Parks Choice, and Best of Show. Admission is $5.

This year, the show's beneficiary is the Positive Resource Center, which has provided help to people affected by or at risk from HIV and AIDS for 20 years. The Freewheelers Car Club was founded in 1978 and boasts more than 400 members who own more than 1,700 vintage and classic cars. For more information about the club, visit

DocFest Spins Truth at Roxie

The Documentary Film Festival screens Sept. 28 through Oct. 10 at the Roxie Cinemas, 3125 16th Street between Guerrero and Valencia streets. Now in its fifth year, the 13-day event features films that tell "the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth," say the fest's organizers.

One Bay Area highlight is Eat at Bill's: Life in the Monterey Market, a documentary about a family-owned produce market in Berkeley. The film focuses on the owner, Bill Fujimoto, whose enthusiasm is the driving force behind the business. Attendees will also get to watch Skin Too Few, Dutch documentarian Jeroen Berkven's film about English singer-singwriter Nick Drake, who didn't attract a significant audience until after his death by overdose in 1974.

Movie tickets are $10 for general admission. Packages include all films for $200, 10 for $80, or five for $45. For tickets or more information, visit www or call 820-3907.

Network for Neighborhood Empowerment

Wondering how to make Noe Valley even better? Find out at the first Neighborhood Empowerment Summit on Saturday, Sept. 8, at Bill Graham Civic Auditorium from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m.

The all-day resource fair features San Francisco agencies and nonprofits that are committed to working with residents to improve their neighborhoods. The event will also include breakout sessions on a variety of topics, including disaster preparedness, grant writing, building neighborhood associations, safer streets, and fighting global warming. People who made a difference in their own neighborhoods and the nonprofits that partnered with them will explain how they worked together to make change.

To sign up for the summit or to join the Neighborhood Empowerment Network mailing list, visit or call 554-7111. The auditorium is at 99 Grove Street, one block east of Van Ness.

Outdoor Indie Films in Bernal

Local filmmakers in all genres will light up the silver screen under the stars at the Bernal Heights Outdoor Cinema Sept. 27 through 29. Although the committee hadn't finalized its choices by press time, co-organizer Anne Batmale says, "This is a good year for submissions." The series begins at Foreign Cinema, 2534 Mission Street, on Thursday, Sept. 27. The next night, films will screen in Bernal Heights Park, and on Saturday, Sept. 29, music and films are scheduled for Precita Park.

All evening screenings happen from 7 to 10 p.m., and the films are appropriate for general audiences, including kids. Films by and of special interest to young people are scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 29, from 1 to 3 p.m. Admission is free, and all screenings are preceded by a reception to meet the filmmakers. Refreshments will be sold by local groups.

For a schedule of film titles, visit or call 641-8417.