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‘Rocky Horror’ fun for a good cause

HAYWARD — It’s just a jump to the left, and then a step to the right as folks do the “Time Warp” again Saturday, Oct. 5, at a “Rocky Horror Picture Show” celebration.

The party is a fundraiser for Community Resources for Independent Living, which assists people with disabilities.

The band Razor Train will play a medley of the cult classic’s songs. Movie clips will be screened, with audience participation bags for singalongs. Costumes are encouraged but not required. A makeup artist will be available to complete the “Rocky Horror” look.

The party will be at the Bistro, 1001 B St., Hayward.

Tickets are $20 with a movie fun bag and $15 admission only in advance and at the door for $25. They can be purchased at www.crilhayward.org/events, the Bistro or at 439 A St., Hayward, CA 94541. For more information, call 510-881-5743.

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ID theft, free legal advice, author reading at Hayward library

HAYWARD — Identity theft is becoming more common and sophisticated. The latest information and tips on how to protect yourself — and your bank account and credit — will be shared at a two-hour session Saturday, Sept. 21, at the main library.

Speakers will talk about common scams and forms of fraud, give practical advice on how to recognize scams and protect yourself, share referral information and where to get help.

The workshop begins at 2 p.m. at the library, 835 C St.

For more information, email or call Trudy Toll at 510-881-7974 or trudy.toll@hayward-ca.gov.

The library also will be having its monthly Lawyer in the Library on Wednesday, Sept. 18, at Weekes Branch Library from 6 to 7:45 p.m. and Monday, Sept. 23, from 6 to 7:45 p.m. at the Main Library.

Each person gets 15 minutes of free legal advice with a licensed attorney. Onsite registration begins 30 minutes before the first session, and space is limited, with consultation being assigned by lottery.

For more information, call 510-881-7980.

Hayward’s library is a busy place, with lots of free events, including book discussions and signings by authors. The next one will be with artist Salma Arastu, who has illustrated some of 13th-century mystic poet Rumi’s works in “Turning Rumi.” It takes place from 6 to 7:45 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 18, at the Main Library. Arastu will bring some of her artwork and have copies of her books for sale.

For details, please call or email Trudy Toll at 510-881-7974 or trudy.toll@hayward-ca.gov.

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A book with a powerful message

HAYWARD — In April, 30 volunteers handed out free copies of the book “The Language of Flowers” in Hayward to people who don’t normally read as part of World Book Night. On Saturday, Aug. 17, the book’s author will give a free talk at Hayward City Hall.

“Language of Flowers” by Vanessa Diffenbaugh is about Victoria, 18, who has aged out of the foster care system. She sleeps in a San Francisco park, where she plants a garden. The discovery of her garden leads to discoveries of herself.

In addition to sharing the book, Hayward Library’s Book-to-Action program focused on raising awareness about foster youth. The program connects reading a book with a civic engagement project.

Volunteers let the community know about Bay Area and national organizations that help foster youth, including The Camellia Network (co-founded by Diffenbaugh), Hayward-based Bay Area Youth Centers, Beyond Emancipation, First Place for Youth, Alameda County Court Appointed Special Advocates for Children (CASA), and Adopt a Special Kid, according to a release.
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Representatives of those groups will be at Diffenbaugh’s talk, which begins at 2 p.m. in Hayward Council Chambers, 777 B St.

Those interested in becoming a World Book Night book giver next year can sign up for the WBN mailing list at http://www.worldbooknight.org/ .

The Aug. 17 event is sponsored by the Hayward Public Library, the Friends of the Hayward Library, and the Book Shop on B Street. For more information, call 510-881-7700, email sally.thomas@hayward-ca.gov or visit http://library.hayward-ca.gov

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Business comings, goings

HAYWARD — Famous Dave’s is close to opening at Southland Mall. A sign in front says it’s opening July 22. There’s also a sign indicating the barbecue chain is hiring.

Famous Dave’s is moving into the old Marie Callendar’s building facing Winton Avenue that has been vacant for some time. The barbecue restaurant was serving up food at the recent downtown street fair.

And in downtown Hayward on Foothill Boulevard between A and B streets, a Filipino restaurant is opening at the former crepes restaurant. I haven’t seen a sign showing when it will open.

The consignment shop at A and Foothill is closing. It’s started a going out of business sale. Meanwhile, a few doors down, Dollar Tree has been open for awhile.

The Zumba place that was on Foothill in the same block as the consignment shop and Dollar Tree has moved to B Street next to Eden Jewelry, near Mission Boulevard.

Avocado Freddy’s is scheduled to reopen July 26. It’s on Main Street near the Jackson-Mission-Foothill intersection (the building was formerly a Kentucky Fried Chicken outlet) and close to Bret Harte Middle School and St. Regis Retirement Center Avocado Freddy’s is offering some specials with its reopening; check its website for details.

If you hear of other places opening (and yes, closing, sadly), please share. Thanks!

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Local author, musician at Hayward library Saturday

author photo Amy Franklin-Willis high res

HAYWARD — A local author and a musician will combine their talents Saturday, June 15, at the Hayward Main Library.

Amy Franklin-Willis of Castro Valley will talk about her debut novel, “The Lost Saints of Tennessee,” and Andrew Castro will perform original songs inspired by Franklin-Willis’ book. The event starts at 1 p.m. at the library, 835 C St.

“The Lost Saints of Tennessee” tells the story of three generations of a working-class Southern family from the 1940s to the 1980s. Library Journal wrote in its review, “Franklin-Willis plumbs the depths of family dynamics, compassionately depicting her characters as they struggle with situations over which they have no control.” After losing his twin to a drowning accident and his wife to divorce, Zeke Cooper leaves his mother and two daughters in Tennessee and travels to Virginia, where he considers his responsibility to repair his fractured family.

Librarian Sally Thomas selected the novel for the Mostly Literary Fiction Book Group, which discussed it last month. “The novel provoked passionate discussion about love between parents, siblings and married couples, and the ways that our intentions to protect our loved ones go awry if secrets are involved,” she said.

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Southgate Swim Club pool to reopen

HAYWARD — The Southgate Swim Club will dedicate its refurbished pool at 11 a.m. Saturday, May 4.

Rebuilding of the pool, which started leaking last year, was dealt two setbacks. The original contractor left with the project only half completed. Club members decided to rebuild the pool themselves, under the guidance of John Sydow, owner of Sydow Pool Service and Repair. Sydow only asked that club members pay the favor forward.

Then in October, thieves broke into the club, stealing members’ tools that were being used to rebuild the pool, plus the sound system for swim meets and pop-up tents.

But pool is now finished, along with new plumbing and a new electrical system.

The community is invited to join Saturday’s celebration at the club, 24900 Magnolia St., which is a little south of Southland Mall. Hayward Mayor Michael Sweeney is expected to present a commendation to Sydow.

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Cinco de Mayo celebration in Hayward

HAYWARD – The city will be celebrating Cinco de Mayo on Saturday, May 4, at City Hall Plaza, 777 B St.

The day will be filled with entertainment, starting with karate with Morning Glory at 10 a.m. The activities are free, but there is a charge for food and beverages.

The rest of the entertainment lineup:
• 11 – Coro del Kínder de Burbank School
• 11:15 Coro de Bridges Academy at Melrose
• 11:20 – Dancing horses and Banda
• 11:30 – Balé Folclórico Jalisco
• 12 – Ballet Folclórico Mexicano de Carlos Moreno
• 1 – Ballet Costa de Oro
• 2 – Ballet Herencia Mexicana
• 2:30 Ballet Xochipilli
• 3 – Mariachi Juvenil de Hayward
• 4 – Ballet Tlapalli
• 5 – Danza Azteca
The celebration is hosted by La Alianza de Hayward, with the collaboration of the city of Hayward, Shasta, Kaiser, PG&E, Manada Roofing and others.

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Sherlock Holmes headed to Hayward

HAYWARD – Sherlock Holmes is on the case starting Feb. 14 at the Douglas Morrisson Theatre.

“Sherlock Holmes: The Final Adventure” by Steven Dietz combines two of Arthur Conan Doyle’s stories, “The Scandal in Bohemia” and “The Final Problem.” The production, based on the original 1899 script by William Gillette and Doyle, won the 2007 Edgar Award for Best Mystery Play.

The whodunit previews Feb. 14 and opens at 8 p.m. Feb. 15, running through March 10. Tickets are $10 preview, $29 other performances, with discounts for seniors and students. A special Saturday matinee is scheduled for 2 p.m. March 2, followed by a “talk-back” session with the director and cast. Call 510-881-6777 or go to www.dmtonline.org.

If you haven’t been to the Douglas Morrisson Theatre at 22311 N. Third St. in Hayward, it’s a lovely theater, but it can be a little tricky to find. The website, www.dmtonline.org/Getting%20Here.htm, has fairly detailed directions, but a GPS or an old-fashioned map might not hurt. The theater used to be called Hayward Little Theatre, next to the Hayward Senior Center and Japanese Gardens. It’s run by Hayward Area Recreation and Park District.

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Free massages for those 60 and older

Are you 60 or older and do you live in the Hayward-Castro Valley-San Lorenzo area? If so, you can sign up for a free 10-minute massage by a trained massage therapist. The massages, held the second Monday of the month from 1 to 3 p.m., are by appointment only. They will be given at the Kenneth C. Aitken Senior and Community Center, 17800 Redwood Road. Call 510-881-6738.

The massages are only one of the many things going on at the Hayward Recreation and Parks District. The Aitken Senior Center is organizing a day trip to Cache Creek casino Feb. 6. Cost is $33 for HARD residents, $43 for others. Call 510-881-6738.

The center also is hosting a flea market March 2. Tables are on sale now for $25 residents, $35 others.

And there’s a new exhibit at the Adobe Art Gallery. The A.R.T. annual members exhibit runs through March 2. The gallery is at 20395 San Miguel Ave., Castro Valley. For details, contact adobegallery@haywardrec.org.

The Hayward Shoreline Interpretive Center is hosting an exhibit of artistic walking sticks by Rick Boreliz, “Take Art for a Walk,” through March 3. Call 510-670-7270 for more information.

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Downtown Hayward comings and goings

This week’s City Council meeting includes a presentation from the Cal Poly Technical students who have been working with the city to bring some fresh ideas to rejuvenate the downtown plan, some of which dates back to the ’70s. The students have a website soliciting input from the community; you have until March 20 to weigh in. Take a look at some of the ideas that are being floated over there and if you weigh in, cut and paste it over here for the HayWorders.  And the city also has a page dedicated to the downtown plan update with a lot of information.

Buffalo Bill's Brewery, which has been around since 1983, is one of downtown's success stories and owner Geoff Harries recently told city officials that business is better than ever these days. Here, manager Alex Caldeira doles out the good stuff. (Photo by Doug Duran/Staff)

Figured I’d use this as an opportunity for an update blog and clean out my notes of recently collected downtown stuff.

Here’s a story about a new owner taking over the Cinema Place property, which a lot of people are excited about. Here’s one about the ongoing roadwork in the area — the job is about halfway done and that controversial loop of streets is set for completion at the tail end of the project, about a year from now.

Recent downtown closures, openings and odds and ends:

Garry’s Donuts, the little shop kitty corner to the Bistro, closed after more than 20 years. A number of people cited an increase in rent as the reason. There used to be an older fella who enjoyed sitting outside the donut shop on warm afternoons — haven’t seen him since it closed.

Crepes de Art shut its doors on Foothill, and one of the sisters that opened it back 2009 said they’re still making crepes but on a catering basis only, without a storefront. The yogurt shop next door has been gone for a while, more recently Zuckersuss vacated its Cinema Place space, although you can still see a white baby grand piano inside. Foothill also took a hit with the closure of Montero’s Market, the big Mexican supermarket and taqueria.

The BBB Salon on B Street  held a blow-out sale a few weeks ago before also closing, building owner managed the shop and she said she simply doesn’t have time to spend running a clothing boutique that wasn’t making money. She added that the city is “too strict” in what uses they allow for downtown space, and said she could have rented it out to a popular S.F.-based boxing gym if the city had been receptive to such a use. “You have to accept whatever type of business wants to open,” Hong Do said. “After a while, once you have foot traffic, then you can pick the businesses that come in.”

Leather Odyssey also put up a clearance sign, but  is sticking around, although owner Glenn Marciel said it’s “really sluggish” right now and he’s in “survival mode.” He said the owners of the Odd Fellows building he’s in gave him a pretty good break on the rent and that’s the only reason he’s getting by.

Now some good stuff: We had a story on Vintage Alley and its friendly owners, and new burrito joint Avocado Freddy’s recently set up shop the old KFC building at that tricky E/Foothill/Mission intersection. Story on the Hayward Area Historical Society, which is well on the way to opening up their new space in the former Kumbala building, and have rented 6,000 square feet of space to a health services company. Turns out that was the spot that Big 5 Sporting Goods was eyeing a while ago, which fell through.

There’s a restaurant going in at the old Smith building on B Street, called KUPE Studio. It will be African-themed fare, with a bar. As you can see on the website, owner Richmond Apande originally wanted to open a spot with music, entertainment and dancing, but said he got in a “back and forth” with the city over his business and security plan and eliminated that part of KUPE. Now things are going smoother, he said, and he hopes to have it open in the next few months.

Also new on B: California Acupuncture Center and Herbal Shop. Around the corner on Main, the former Main Street Diner is now Bombay Masala Cafe, noticed a opening special of three beers for $10 so they might be aiming for the same college crowd that was attracted by the previous incarnation’s nightly specials.

That’s it for this round. Anyone see something else appear or disappear?