Oakland Tribune Outtakes

Notes from Oakland, Berkeley and in between


Benefit-tribute for OPD officers

By awoodall

On Sunday, April 26th at 5PM, the Uptown Nightclub will be hosting a benefit/tribute event featuring live music and entertainment acts with all door proceeds benefitting the four families of the recently slain OPD officers. This event is being done with the blessing and support of the Oakland Police Officers Association.More information will be forthcoming.

This is what I love about Oakland.

Posted on Friday, March 27th, 2009
Under: Night Owl, Uptown | 1 Comment »
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Downtown parking: have your say

By awoodall

Hey you early birds. Today’s Night Owl was about the unseemly schedule – midnight to 3 a.m. — for street sweeping in the entertainment district downtown along Broadway and Telegraph. “The city has talked about changing the street-sweeping schedule to keep up with the changes downtown, and officials are amenable to shifting the hours, perhaps to 3 to 6 a.m. The next step is to discuss the matter with merchants associations to make sure everyone is on the same page…” Well, here’s the next step: The Oakland Merchants’ Leadership Forum is sponsoring a forum 8 – 10 a.m. Wednesday (March 25) at City Hall Read the rest of this entry »

Posted on Friday, March 20th, 2009
Under: Night Owl, Oakland nightlife, Uptown | No Comments »
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Farley’s East

By awoodall

Farley's Cafe in Potrero Hill


Speaking of openings: Coming to your friendly Oakland Uptown District — a coffeehouse that will feature local artists and events. 

Farley’s, the long-time coffee house on Potrero Hill in San Francisco, will be celebrating 20 years of business this Spring and has plans to open “Farley’s East” in the Uptown district of Oakland. Farley’s East will carry on the tradition of making its neighborhood a better place to live by providing a comfortable space with exceptional coffee and food where people can connect, create, contemplate and build community. The new Farley’s will resemble the original Farley’s and carry a light food menu as well. Farley’s East will open at 33 Grand Ave this Spring. Hours will be 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. (I grabbed this untitled, unauthored photo from Farley’s Yelp! page so let me know if you’re the photog and I’ll add credits.)

Posted on Thursday, December 11th, 2008
Under: Fun Stuff to do in Oakland, Night Owl, Uptown | 3 Comments »
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The phoenix to rise in February

By awoodall

Cecily Burt has an update in today’s Trib about the Fox Theatre’s planned  grand opening — not Oct. 26 as originally hoped but in February. You can’t rush perfection.

Posted on Thursday, October 23rd, 2008
Under: Fox Theatre, Night Owl, Uptown | No Comments »
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Brass band, pink feathers

By awoodall

What: Burlesque ‘n’ Brass, featuring Hot Pink Feathers (dance) & Blue Bone Express (music)
When: Saturday Oct. 4, 2008, 9pm + Dec.6, 2008 (AND Nov. 1 ? — see below)
Where: Café Van Kleef, 1621 Telegraph Ave Oakland 94612
Cost: $10, 21+ Read the rest of this entry »

Posted on Wednesday, October 22nd, 2008
Under: Uptown | No Comments »
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Have I got a story for you

By awoodall

That’s what they all say. But the article about the “party police” cracking down on DJs and dancing in cabarets w/out a license got a lot of attention. KTVU pulled the entire story straight from the paper, including an error in the headline introduced by an editor that the clubs were being fined (not true). The East Bay Express wrote that the Labor Day sweep sent “club maven Angela Woodall in a tizzy.” Anyone who read the article would say tizzy is a wild exaggeration. But now I know how it feels to be on the other side of the reporter’s notebook. Anyway, the Express also picked up on my story for today’s paper about a similar crackdown on big bashes involving biker clubs. Members of the East Bay Dragons, the Syndicate MG, Shadows, etc are going to ask City Councilmembers tonight to work with them on easing a requirement to obtain special permits for parties that draw big crowds. I’m talking 700+. Although the wording is not specific to biker groups, it targets them. Part of it is because they were holding these big parties downtown near newly built condos that didn’t fit with the entertainment district the city is envisioning. Loud pipes being revved and music blaring doesn’t quite work. But part of the problem is probably that a thousand or more black bikers riding through downtown makes those condo keepers a bit nervous, even though there were few incidents among all the parties this summer. Anyway, stay tuned for more of the story of Oakland shooting itself in the entertainment foot. The message is: Keep your good times outta sight and outta mind from the city officials and OPD. And make sure your permits are polished.

Posted on Tuesday, September 16th, 2008
Under: Night Owl, Oakland nightlife, Uptown | No Comments »
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Rock the Vote Bus Wednesday at the Uptown

By awoodall

Wednesday at the Uptown nightclub, The Rock the Vote Bus will be joining the Circo Rocktastico Tour to help reinforce the need for Young Latino Music Fans to vote in November. The Bus will be a fun interactive experience open to the public before & after shows with Voter Registration Bays, Guitar Hero Games, Photo Booth , PSA Recording Booth and Free Mobile Music Downloads. What the  hell is the Circo Rocktastico Tour?
Monte Negro
has joined forces with two other California-based alternative rock bands (Astra Heights, The May Fire) and MTV Tr3s to bring their diverse takes on the burgeoning Latin alternative scene to the West and Midwest for six weeks in August and September. Circo Rocktastico is the tour designed to show the natural unity of the American and Latino Indie cultures and how both influence and flow together so well, especially in a globalized world.
The Uptown nightclub is located 1928 Telegraph. The telephone # is (510) 451-8100.

Posted on Sunday, September 7th, 2008
Under: Uptown | 2 Comments »
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Great Wall of Oakland and the Culture Corridor

By awoodall

The Cultural Arts Commission meeting tonight, Aug. 25, has been cancelled.
The next regular meeting will be held on Sept. 22, from 5:30 to 7:30pm in City Council Chambers.
So, let me guess: You never heard of the Cultural Arts Commission. Or is it just me? I will get back to what the commission does, including planning the East Bay Cultural Corridor project and Web site. It is sort of the artistic version of the East Bay regional trail system or the Bay Area water trail or the Green Corridor, the Safety Corridor…It seems corridors are the catchphrase du jour.
I don’t know many details yet except the Web site would be a dynamic online map of all the galleries and other venues throughout the East Bay and I think the Luminous Oakland Project — the creation of a media arts corridor in the Uptown District — is part of it. I know the “Great Wall of Oakland” outdoor light show Sept. 5 is part of the Luminous Oakland Project. They’ll be projecting 100-foot X 100-foot images of short films and videos across Grand Avenue from the roof of condos onto the eight-story wall of the building behind Luka’s Taproom & Lounge at Broadway and Grand. The theme is “Urban Landscapes” and the show starts 8 p.m. Now, if you want to know more about the arts commission… Read the rest of this entry »

Posted on Monday, August 25th, 2008
Under: Night Owl, Oakland nightlife, Uptown | 1 Comment »
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Farewells and reunions

By awoodall

Uptown district impresario Peter Van Kleef left me a message the other day about a reunion involving his sister and his sister’s closest childhood chum. So I went by Cafe Van Kleef’s last night thinking it would be a good blog and, anyway, I was nearby doing research for a story.
I found there Van Kleef and several of his regulars mystified and saddened by the sudden suicide of the cafe’s first bartender, Vincent, who they described as a tall, lanky 31-year old.
Van Kleef speculated it might be money troubles that drove him to take his own life. Another guy thought it might be money and women worries.  I never met him but thought I would mention him here, since he, a bartender, was nearly by definition a night owl.
On the flip side, Van Kleef told me about the chance reunion after 47 years of his sister Gerda with her childhood friend, named Shirley Tankini or something.  I said it sounds like a alcohol-based Shirley Temple. The friends were separated when the Van Kleef clan moved from the area to the suburbs and met up for the first recently time in nearly five decades at the cafe, which to quote a quote, is like a mix of Friends and Cheers on acid.

Posted on Wednesday, August 20th, 2008
Under: Night Owl, Uptown | No Comments »
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VanKleevage, absinthe & corn dogs like heaven and hell

By awoodall

I stopped in at Cafe Van Kleef the other night on my search for Oakland’s signature cocktail (that’s a story for Friday’s Night Owl) and learned that the bar is now serving food and absinthe. Peter Van Kleef jumped on the “green fairy” bandwagon with La Tourment, a French Absinthe that he said can be drunk straight.
He’s also serving bar food and showed off his convection oven that looks like a safe but that can turn out a pizza with a Sicilian-style crust in minutes. So he claimed. I never know if the rascal is messing with me or not because he’s always got a mischievous look on his face and a tall tale on the tip of his tongue. He looked especially roguish Monday night with his baseball cap worn backwards and a chunky gold chain dangling from his wrist. Anyway, he said the bar is dishing up shrimp and bread, meatballs “like your mother makes” (I hope not MY mother), baked tilapia fish and corn dogs served with mustard and horseradish mustard “so it’s like heaven and hell.”
He removes the stick and cuts the corn dogs up in thirds served with a little paper fan or umbrella. Peter said he also installed a walk-in cooler so he can have enough beer ro supply giant keg taps. His beer prices are still the same although the Chinese, he continued, have cornered the world market on hops, jacking up the price of beer by 50 percent. “I believe students deserve a break,” he added as explanation for his steady prices — $4.
Van Kleef’s just wrapped up a breast cancer awareness event for which a drink called the VanKleevage was concocted. (Three rums with a splash of half-and-half and grenadine syrup. Shake in a cocktail shaker until your hand freezes and the drink looks like breast milk.) What do you expect from the home of the Catholic-Protestant cocktail?

Posted on Wednesday, August 6th, 2008
Under: Oakland nightlife, Uptown | No Comments »
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