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South Shore Shares Summer Concerts

South Shore

As in past years, South Shore Center says it will be presenting a Summer Beats Concert Series, a free, live music event starting next month and ending in late August.

The first concert is set for 5 to 7 p.m. on Saturday, July 19, with Mike Amaral’s California Beach Boys, a tribute rock band playing the Beach Boys’ classic hits. All performances take place in the Center Court.

Along with music, the concert series features family activities like face painting, henna tattoos, raffles and more. R&B Wine Cellars will sells some of its top wines at the event, as well.

Community members are asked to support the Alameda Unified School District’s Equipped 4 Success school-supply drive by donating basic items to fill backpacks for low-income students. All wine sales from the concert benefit the drive.

South will present these other shows this summer, from 5 to 7 p.m. on Saturday:
– Aug. 2, Tito Garcia Y Su Orquesta Internacional (Latin/salsa)
– Aug. 16, Sun Kings (Beatles tribute band)
– Aug. 30., Pure Ecstasy (MoTown)

Recently, South Shore announced that Studio Grow, an indoor play center that provides drop-in programs for children ages 0 to 6 years old plans to open at the retail center in mid-June.

“Studio Grow, which was founded in Berkeley in 2006, chose South Shore Center for its newest Bay Area location because it is Alameda’s premier lifestyle destination, particularly for young families,” said Julie Taylor, senior vice president of Cornish & Carey Commercial Newmark Knight Frank, in a press release.

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Alameda Borders Bookstore to Close

Alameda Town Centre, aka South Shore, is losing one of its biggest tenants, and Alamedans are losing a book-friendly place to hang out.

Borders announced Wednesday that it entered bankruptcy proceedings, which entail the closing of about 200 of its 642 stores nationwide by April 30, 2011. This will lead to about 6,000 of the company’s 19,500 employees losing their jobs, according to various news reports.

Borders will be closing a long list of stores in California, including 12 in the Bay Area.

For Alamedans, this could mean longer check-out lines at the Alameda Free Library, though it should bring more foot traffic and hopefully rising sales to local book stores, like Books Inc. And for those looking for parking space near Borders at Alameda Town Centre, this situation could get a bit easier until a new tenant is found.

But for the new owners of Alameda Town Centre, of course, the Borders’ closure means a big drop in rent. (Jamestown Properties of Atlanta recently bought the shopping center for $181 million from Harsch Investment Properties.)

While some Alamedans have commented online that they will miss the Island’s Borders, many Bay Area residents say that they buy much of their reading material online today — and that they hope “mom and pop” shops will benefit from this development.

The closest store to Alameda that will be open after April 30 is in Emeryville.

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Alameda shopping: On- or off- Island?

This week’s Life on the Island, the column I write for the Alameda Journal, is about last week’s Alameda City Council decision to let the plans for an Orchard Supply Hardware at Towne Centre continue. I know there’s not universal support for the store because many who opposed it went before City Council to make their case, but many Alamedans I’ve talked to over the years are eager for more local shopping options, even if they’re not locally owned. What’s most interesting to me in the instance of the OSH, is that we’re not talking about new development. We’re talking about a filling an existing building in an existing shopping center.