Meetings – 2014

  • Winter Solstice Luncheon

    Sunday, December 21, 2014

    Hosts Jack Barry and May Pon were in their customary fine form.   Their banquet was, too: scrumptiously tender turkey, all the trimmings, and a killer apple pie.  Special shout-outs to Sylvia for her homemade pumpkin cake, Nora for the spinach salad, Pramila for the cardamon cake, Carol and Eric for the chocolate macaroons (eaten mostly by one person who shall remain nameless), and Andrew and 10-year-old daughter Fiona for the pear compote. It’s not easy chatting with people five or six times your age, but Fiona is a fine conversationalist.

    Brother and sister Jonathan (15) and Hannah (11), violin virtuosos, serenaded us with Christmas carols. Thanks to parents Julian and Helen Chu for producing these insanely talented kids.


  • Nelda Williams, record-setting triathlete

    Monday, November 24, 2014

    Maybe your idea of fun isn’t getting up at 3 a.m. so you can take a one-way boat trip to Alcatraz,  jump into San Francisco Bay before dawn, swim a mile and a half, bike 18 miles (with your fingers and toes still numb from the swim), and run eight more miles.  That’s the Escape from Alcatraz triathlon, and for Nelda Williams it’s become a life-style.  A triathlete since 1983, Nelda has done eight “Escapes,” including her record-breaking effort in 2014, when she eclipsed the previous best time for her age group (65-69) by 29 minutes.

    Nelda brought her competitive zest, quick wit, and Texas drawl to SHARP to narrate a slideshow and equipment show-and-tell about her 2014 Escape and her passion for triathloning.


  • Transportation Forum

    Monday, October 27, 2014

    Supervisor Scott Wiener was among the advocates who spoke for or against three measures on the fall ballot: a $500 million transportation bond issue (Proposition A), a measure to increase SFMTA funding by a percentage equal to the city’s annual population increase (Proposition B), and a nonbinding policy statement about transportation priorities to (among other things) restrict parking meters, increase funding for parking garages, and provide more representation for motorists (Proposition L).  Propositions A and B passed; L lost.


  • Ready or Not: Is the Bay Area Prepared for Climate Change?

    Monday, September 29, 2014

    First the bad news, which isn’t really news anymore.  Climate change is here, and its effects — flooding, extreme weather, wild fires — will become only more prevalent.  The good news is that the Bay Area has begun to adapt to climate change while doing its share to mitigate it.  Laura Tam is one of the leaders in that effort.  Sustainable Development Policy Director for SPUR, a nonprofit public policy think tank, Laura has a fancy title but an accessible manner.  Her one-hour primer on climate change adaptation earned her an extended ovation from the audience when she finished.


  • Election Forum

    Monday, September 15, 2014

    It was standing room only for the election forum, which featured the first joint appearance of the two candidates for BART Board of Directors, District 8: James Fang (incumbent) and Nick Josefowitz.  Josefowitz won the election.

    The forum included presentations by three candidates for the School Board (Emily Murase, Trevor McNeil, and Jamie Wolfe) and debates by proponents and opponents of Proposition G (transfer tax on real estate sales), Propositions H and I (competing proposals regarding the playing fields in the west end of Golden Gate Park), and Proposition J (minimum wage increase).  Murase was elected; McNeil and Wolfe were not.  Propositions I and J passed; G and H failed.

    Special thanks to the Golden Gate Heights Neighborhood Association (GGHNA) for co-sponsoring the meeting and to Sally Stephens and Nancy Stafford of GGHNA for providing the refreshments.


  • Ananda Joy Hart from City Youth Now; Daniel Flores, candidate for superior court judge; Lee Hsu, candidate for school board

    Monday, August 25, 2014

    Ananda Joy Hart, managing director of City Youth Now, described the organization’s work.  CYN has been helping youth in the foster care and juvenile justice programs since 1950.  If Ananda herself is any indication (and she is), they are doing excellent work. We also heard from two very well-spoken candidates for election in November: Daniel Flores, a candidate for superior court judge, and Lee Hsu, a candidate for school board.  Flores was elected; Hsu was not.


  • Townhall meeting with Assemblyman Phil Ting

    Wednesday, July 30, 2014

    Assemblyman Ting, a candidate for reelection this fall, conducted a townhall meeting at the Hall of Flowers in Golden Gate Park.  SHARP sponsored the meeting with Inner Sunset Park Neighbors (ISPN), Golden Gate Heights Neighborhood Association (GGHNA), and two local Democratic clubs.

  • Hidden Garden Steps

    Monday, July 28, 2014

    The organizers and artists who did the Hidden Garden Steps presented a photo tour and panel discussion explaining how the project came to fruition and how it continues to bring people together from the neighborhood and beyond.


  • Sutro Stewards; Golden Gate Heights Park update

    Monday, June 30, 2014

    Craig Dawson from Sutro Stewards gave a great presentation on the history and current status of Sutro Forest.  Our first speaker was Frank Noto, who gave us an update on the restoration of Golden Gate Heights Park.


  • Town hall meeting with Supervisor Norman Yee

    Monday, May 19, 2014

    Supervisor Norman Yee (District 7) stopped by SHARP to review the state of the city and the neighborhood.   He asked for neighborhood input on two issues: affordable housing and the Kezar Drive bottleneck.


  • San Francisco City Guides walking tours; MUNI update

    Monday, April 28, 2014

    After a brief presentation by MUNI about its Sunset Tunnel Trackway Improvement Program, we learned about San Francisco City Guides, a mostly volunteer group that offers dozens of free walking tours all over the city every week.   Rob Spoor, a veteran guide and master storyteller, presented a composite tour in the form of a quiz about interesting facts one learns from various tours.  Everyone knew the gold-painted fire hydrant at Church and 20th.  Not everyone knew why Enrico Caruso was particularly terrified by the 1906 earthquake, even though he was unharmed.  School should have been like this.


  • Golden Gate Park volunteer projects: the Coast Live Oaks and the Butterflies of Strawberry Hill

    Monday, March 31, 2014

    We devoted the evening to two inspiring volunteer-based efforts in Golden Gate Park.  Rob Bakewell told the story of how volunteers have rescued and restored the northeast quadrant of the park, home to the park’s wondrous native tree, the Coast Live Oak (more information).   Julia Brashares described how volunteers are transforming Strawberry Hill (above Stow Lake) into an oasis for “hilltopping” swallowtail butterflies.  Moral of the story: engaged volunteers are making our neighborhood beautiful and having fun doing it.


  • The Housing Crisis in San Francisco

    Monday, February 24, 2014

    Tim Colen from the Housing Action Coalition (HAC) and Peter Cohen from the Council of Community Housing Organizations (CCHO) had a spirited discussion about how to address the affordable housing crisis in San Francisco.   At the start of the evening, representatives from the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission (SFPUC) spoke about the likely rate increases in water and sewer rates.  More than 50 people attended the meeting, the largest turnout since we opened our new building in 2010.


  • Jake Sigg’s Tour of Mt. Davidson

    Sunday, February 16, 2014

    Jake Sigg, a longtime advocate for the environment and SHARP member, led a tour of Mt. Davidson.  He said the area is a dying plantation of trees.  Without proper management, there will inevitably be fewer, not more, trees.


  • SHARP’s first concert: the International Low Brass Trio

    Sunday, February 9, 2014

    The International Low Brass Trio performed at SHARP on a Sunday afternoon before a full house.


  • Journalist Joel Engardio

    Monday, January 27, 2014

    Joel Engardio spoke about his career as a journalist and film maker, how he writes his Sunday column for the Examiner, and his views on issues facing the city. If you want to read Joel’s column online or send him any ideas, sign up at his website.