Part of the Bay Area News Group

Capone’s Speakeasy Comin’ to Park

By Janet Levaux
Friday, February 28th, 2014 at 6:19 pm in Uncategorized

Capone’s Speakeasy is set to open at Park Street and Central in early April, developers say.

The aim is to give Bay Area residents “an intriguing new nightlife option. Executive Chef Nicholas Koliopoulos plans to prepare Modern American cuisine small-plate foods. Brunch will also be served on Sunday.

Complementing this cuisine will be a “robust selection of contemporary, classic and signature cocktails, a California-centric wine list, a dozen mostly small producer beers, live music (jazz and light rock on Saturdays), DJ entertainment (Thursdays and Fridays), a dance floor, and staff adorned in period dress (think flappers and men in vests). This sets the stage for a vibrant night out in a locale evocative of a 1920s speakeasy,” organizers say.

Chef Koliopoulos, most recently at the Ranch at Little Hills in San Ramon and Auburn James Tasting Room in Danville, grew up in the Bay Area and graduated from Laney College with a Culinary Arts degree. Working with him will be General Manager Julie Ferrantino, who is known for her work at Ardenwood Historic Farm in Fremont and Paradise Grill in Castro Valley.

Highlights of the 85-seat dining room, being designed by architect Kevin Gregory and interior designer Naomie Wert, will include 72-foot long wood-topped bar. Capone’s will also have a private dining venue inside a bank vault that can accommodate 24 seated guests, plus a second floor balcony VIP room.

One of the friends of a principal investor in the restaurant coincidentally is the owner of Al Capone’s 1932 V-12 Packard automobile and Capone’s 133-foot yacht. The vessel, docked in Alameda, will be used to host parties and Bay excursions in conjunction with restaurant related special events.

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Beached Yacht Gone; Later Sunsets Back

By Janet Levaux
Friday, February 21st, 2014 at 12:42 pm in Uncategorized


A sailboat that had run aground in the San Leandro Channel (shown above), just west of bridge that connects Alameda’s two islands, was removed earlier this week.

A security guard on Bay Farm Island said Tuesday that it had been reported to Alameda police and other authorities last weekend.

Boats frequently go up on the sand on the channel’s north side, which is particularly shallow when the tide is low.

In other news, the sun is setting at about 6 p.m. these days, and the sunsets are now splashed in pastel colors.

These vistas and many more will attract the attention of local photographers this weekend, during the Frank Bette Center for the Arts ninth-annual Alameda on Camera event–which brings 48 photographers (including this blogger) to 48 different sections of the Island for 48 hours of shooting.


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Meet Photographer at Main Library

By Janet Levaux
Tuesday, February 4th, 2014 at 4:34 pm in Uncategorized


The Alameda Public Library presents works by photographer Richard Lee, who has organized an exhibit of images taken in Taishan, a city in the Pearl River Delta area of Southern China that is the native region of many overseas Chinese.

Lee’s exhibit, located on the second floor, will be shown through until March 1. A reception for the artists and the community will be held from 6:30 to 8 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 5, in the Stafford Meeting Room.

At the reception, Lee will discuss the Chinese diaspora and Taishan’s importance to many immigrants, who speak Cantonese (rather than Mandarin).

Local photographer Mary Elena Goodan is exhibiting her photographs of Alameda in the Regina K. Stafford Meeting Room through March.

Alameda Public Affairs Forum will discuss the importance of a free press and civil liberties, led by John Diaz, head of the editorial and opinion page of the “San Francisco Chronicle” from 7 to 9 p.m. this Saturday, Feb. 8, at the Main Library.

Come early to share refreshments.

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Google Tries Out Ferry at Bay Farm

By Janet Levaux
Tuesday, February 4th, 2014 at 4:17 pm in Uncategorized

harbor bay

Google is offering its East Bay employees access to a private ferry service between the Harbor Bay terminal and Redwood City.

The service, being operated by the group that runs the San Francisco Bay Ferry, is running this week on a trial basis.

Google, which has drawn the ire of some San Francisco residents and protestors over its private bus service, staged a similar pilot ferry program from San Francisco recently.

According to the Water Emergency Transportation Authority (WETA), Google is paying $275 per landing. In addition, its employees are asked not to park in public parking areas and are being offered a shuttle service from the ferry to the Google campus.

In other news, Google has been asked by the State of California to move a “mystery barge” from a construction site on Treasure Island in the middle of San Francisco Bay because the permits are not in order, a state official said Monday.

According to several news sources, this notice came after the San Francisco Bay Conservation and Development Commission investigated complaints about construction of the floating, four-story building.

Apparently, neither the Treasure Island Development Authority nor the city of San Francisco have the appropriate permits for work to be done at the sit.

Google currently leases the dock space for $79,000 per month, and the lease is good through August.

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Art, Music Activities Set for Super Bowl Sunday

By Janet Levaux
Sunday, February 2nd, 2014 at 9:47 am in Uncategorized


For those who are looking for some non-football-focused fun for Super Bowl Sunday, Feb. 2, head over to Redux Studios & Gallery on Lincoln Avenue (off Park Street).

As part of Redux’ ongoing series of hands-on artistic workshops, visitors can stop by today from 4 to 6 p.m. to pick out old art prints that can be turned into more contemporary art pieces by painting, drawing or collage work.

Down the road at the Frank Bette Center for the Arts on Paru Street (at Lincoln), community members can submit applications by 5 p.m. the Alameda on Camera event, slated for Feb. 21-23.

Virago Theatre Company presents Giuseppe Verdi’s “Il Trovatore,” a tale of rivalry and passion, at the Alameda Elk’s Lodge on Santa Clara Avenue. The production is directed by Ellen St. Thomas and conducted by Robert Ashens.

Shows take place at at 2 p.m. on Sunday, Feb. 2 and 9, as well as at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, Feb 7.

The opera, which will be sung in Italian with English subtitles, tells the story of the vengeful gypsy Azucena, and her son Manrico’s romance with the noblewoman Leonora, as well as his rivalry with the Count di Luna. The cast features Eileen Meredith as Leonora, Alex Boyer as Manrico, Jo Vincent Parks as Count di Luna and Elizabeth Baker as Azucena.

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Come Enjoy Sun Kings Benefit Show

By Janet Levaux
Saturday, February 1st, 2014 at 3:12 pm in Uncategorized

sun kings

Alameda’s popular Sun Kings band, which plays Beatles tunes and so much more, will be in full swing tonight at Eagles Hall, 2305 Alameda Ave.

Doors open for the show at 6 p.m., with music set to start at 7 p.m. A suggested donation of $15 will benefit the American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life.

Dinner is set for 5-7 p.m. tonight; tickets are $15.

Also on tap, organizers say, is a raffle with $2,600 worth of items, including:
- 1 month membership to the Harbor Bay Isle Club with a training session, tennis evaluation and one spa service
- 4 rounds of golf at Sub Par Miniature Golf on Park Street
- A haircut with Andrea Guyette at Compliments Hair Design
- A facial party for 10 at SumBody & SumTime Spa on Park Street

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Super Bowl Comes to Alameda Theatre

By Janet Levaux
Friday, January 31st, 2014 at 9:11 pm in Uncategorized

Alameda Theatre

The Alameda Theatre & Cineplex is hosting a free, live viewing of Super Bowl 48 this Sunday, Feb. 2, when the Denver Broncos (Peyton Manning, quarterback) take on the Seattle Seahawks (Russell Wilson, quarterback). The game will be televised live by the Fox Channel from MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J.

The doors open at 1:30 p.m., while the game will kick off at 3:25 p.m.

Residents can pick up two free tickets this weekend before the game at the box office, 2317 Central Ave.

The theater management asks that guests bring no outside food and drink. Special snack bar treats will be sold during the event.

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Public Meeting on Art Set for Tonight

By Janet Levaux
Wednesday, January 29th, 2014 at 3:20 pm in Uncategorized

The City of Alameda’s Public Art Commission is set to meet at 6 p.m. today, Tuesday, Jan. 29, to discuss two proposed works of art.

One is a kinetic sculpture made of titanium and stainless-steel metals to be located at the back of Cardinal Point, 2400 Mariner Square Dr., along the waterfront.

The other is a mural to be made by artist Ken Carvalho to be displayed at the Walgreens building, now under construction at 1600 Park St.

Please come by City Hall this evening to view information about the public art projects and share feedback with city staff.

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Shakespeare, Other Arts on Tap in Town

By Janet Levaux
Friday, January 24th, 2014 at 1:46 pm in Uncategorized


The Alameda Free Library has organized a one-hour performance of “Julius Caesar” at 2 p.m. this Saturday, Jan. 25, at the Main Library.

The play is being produced and presented by the San Francisco Shakespeare Festival. Space is limited, so guests are encouraged to arrive early.

The performance is recommended for kids 10 and older, as well as adults.

Next Saturday, Feb. 1, Encinal High School with host a Shakespeare monologue competition from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the cafeteria. Prizes will be awarded for best dramatic, comic and audience-choice monologue.

Meanwhile, over at Redux Studios & Gallery on Lincoln Ave. (off Park Street), some hands-on artistic workshops are planned. One will take place from 4-6 p.m. this Sunday, Jan. 26.

Visitors can stop by to learn about painting with watercolor, acrylic and natural dyes. At the same time on the following Sunday, Feb. 2, residents can drop in to pick out old prints that can be turned into more contemporary art pieces by painting, drawing or collage work.

The Frank Bette Center for the Arts on Paru Street is hosting the closing-bid gala for its Déjà Vu Silent Auction fundraiser from 6 to 8 p.m. this Saturday evening, Jan. 25. The center also invites community members to submit applications by Feb. 2 for its Alameda on Camera event, slated for Feb. 21-23.

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Alameda Biotech Firm to Be Recognized

By Janet Levaux
Friday, January 24th, 2014 at 12:56 pm in Uncategorized

Singulex, which develops and manufactures a test for the early detection of cardiovascular disease out of its Harbor Bay offices, is a finalist for this year’s East Bay Innovations Awards.

The East Bay Economic Development Alliance will toast Singulex and 15 other innovators at a Feb. 13 gala at the Fox Theater in Oakland.

“All of us at Singulex are deeply honored to be considered for this award,” said President & CEO Guido Baechler, in a press release. “It means a great deal to us to be recognized for our pioneering work in cardiovascular diagnostics, which is helping to reduce the chances of future heart attacks for millions of people. Our location in Alameda has enabled us to attract and retain bright, innovative talent, and has been an important part of our success.”

“The City of Alameda congratulates Singulex on this distinction,” said Debbie Potter, the City’s Community Development Director, in a statement. “It is exciting to see Singulex get the recognition it deserves for its extremely sophisticated and profoundly essential work.”

Singulex is a finalist for the East Bay Innovation Award in the life sciences, which was given to Harbor Bay-based Penumbra, last year. (Penumbra’s work focuses on strokes and vascular disease, and it employs over 400 people worldwide.)

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