The last thing Oakland kingpin Henry J. Kaiser wanted to see while reigning from the 28th story of his downtown skyscraper was the flat top of a parking garage. So he covered the rooftop with a manicured garden. Inside the Kaiser Center he built a 400-person theater perfect for sit-down music performances and other live shows and a restaurant with a view of Lake Merritt and probably half of the Bay Area on a good day. Steve Snider of Oakland Venue Management said the rooftop garden is perfect for weddings, including his own in October. The timing is perfect. He and Andrew Jones just took over management of all three venues in the Kaiser Center on Lakeside Drive.
The Henry J. Kaiser Auditorium is another story. The duo was set to run the center but Oakland turned to Live Nation, who bailed on running the grand building because the city wanted them to foot the bill for necessary repairs in addition to the other costs. Now the city wants to sell the building.
Anyway, congratulations to Steve and his bride to be, as well as the partners who have been booking acts and producing shows since they opened the Oakland Box Theater on Telegraph and 18th (later San Pablo Avenue). For inquiries: (510) 384-7874 or visit the website.