Easter Egg Hunt for Little Kids – April 5th, 2015

Our favorite Inner Sunset event organizer, Barbara Oleksiw, is doing an Easter Egg Hunt for the littlest ones. She asked me to publicize this to Forest Knolls (our kids are invited, too!), and I’m happy to announce the details:

easter eggsALL children five years and younger (with parents) are invited to our (first-ever) Inner Sunset Easter-Egg Hunt in our backyard. We’ll attempt to transform our space into a suitable landscape, with hundreds of hidden (and not-so-hidden) Easter treats.

If your favorite children happen to be a bit older, and would enjoy the spirited mêlée, please invite them.

We’ll have *plenty* of supplies to refresh what’s discovered, so we plan for all to leave with a bag of success. (Easter baskets are discouraged, because we’ll give out individual bags.)

FREE Easter-Egg Hunt at Sixth & Irving
Sunday, April 5th

Staggered Entry schedule
11a.m:  Babies with Parents
11:30a.m:  2- and 3-year olds with Parents
Noon:  4- and 5-year olds, with *no* parents
1p.m: Naps for all!

Pls call Barbara (415- if you have even an hour to volunteer

Hope everyone has a splendid time!


Inner Sunset ALS Ice-Bucket Challenge Sunday 14 Sept 2014

bucket[Sorry, sent out a draft with the wrong date. Here’s the correct version.]

We’ve all been reading about the ice-bucket challenge – where you agree to have ice-water poured over you in exchange for a donation to the ALS Association. Inner Sunset neighbor Barbara Oleksiw asked me to let everyone know about the Inner Sunset one, tomorrow.

 Take the Inner Sunset ALS Ice-Bucket Challenge *THIS* Sunday, 1-2:30p at the Big Lunch, 9th & Irving

If you’d like to participate but don’t have funds to contribute, please come.

If you’d like to participate and make a donation, please come.

If you’d like to simply watch these ice-crazed stalwarts, please come.

We have a sponsor who’ll donate $50 to *each* person willing to get dunked, but who can’t contribute.
Plus, we have a sponsor who’ll match the funds of *each* person who gets dunked and also contributes.
We’re planning to make this as fun, water-conserving and creative as possible. And, if you’re not interested in getting wet or donating, we invite you to simply cheer us on!

If you haven’t heard of the ice bucket challenge, here’s what Wikipedia says about it:
people small rt“The Ice Bucket Challenge, sometimes called the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge, is an activity involving dumping a bucket of ice water on someone’s head to promote awareness of the disease amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and encourage donations to research. It went viral on social media during July–August 2014. In the US, many people participate for the ALS Association, and in the UK, many people participate for the Motor Neurone Disease Association, although some individuals have opted to donate their money from the Ice Bucket Challenge to other organizations.

“The challenge dares nominated participants to be filmed having a bucket of ice water poured on their heads and then nominating others to do the same. A common stipulation is that nominated participants have 24 hours to comply or forfeit by way of a charitable financial donation.”

Beautiful Hidden Garden Steps Mosaic

Three years ago, reporting on a meeting I attended, I mentioned the Hidden Garden Steps project. The other day, a friend told me it was done, and of course I wanted to see it. So off we went.

It starts at Lawton and 16th, next to a painted bench, and connects to Kirkham.  Here’s the first flight up, with a snail…

hidden garden steps 1Goes up to a golden California poppy …

hidden garden steps 2…(and notice that many of the flowers have names of donors on them?)

hidden garden steps 3More flowers, a dragon fly, and ferns…

hidden garden steps 4

hidden garden steps 5And lots more names!

If you want to see each flight of steps in more detail – and even read the names on them – there’s a website with photographs HERE.

And there are views – including one of my favorites, the beautiful Sutro Forest.

sutro forest and UCSF

Inner Sunset Halloween – We’re Invited

Barbara Oleksiw, the marvelous organizer who puts on all kinds of interesting events at the Northwest corner of Irving and 6th, is of course doing Halloween – not once but twice over. She asked me to run this.

We’re all invited.  It looks like you could do the Forest Knolls Halloween loop as well as this, if you want.

There’s a pumpkin promenade the evening before:

pumpkins on on parade public domainPumpkin Promenade with Punch!    The Night *BEFORE* Halloween, Wednesday, Oct. 30th, 7 ~ 9pm

Hoping to make this an annual event, we are *this year* offering a creative display along Irving St., near Sixth Avenue, of carved pumpkins, starting at 7p.  We invite YOU to lend us your carved pumpkins (just for the evening).  Or, drop them off earlier, and pick them up later. We’ll have plenty of tea-lights, too.

All adults & kids will be offered warm drinks…and perhaps some cookies will appear.

Questions answered by Barbara: 415/

halloween-scary-house public domainAnd then there’s a Halloween party on Halloween itself:

An Old-Fashioned Halloween for pre-teens  -Thursday, Oct. 31st  5 ~ 9pm

Spooks, Ghosts, Games & Treats (of course)
SPECIAL: Tricks for Kids to Play on Adults
All Adults Welcome when Accompanied by a Kid!

Photographs for Families with Babies, too!
•  absolutely no admission charge  •  free, free, free  •
NW Corner of Irving & 6th, Inner Sunset

Questions/Volunteer: Barbara 415 /


Donate Books for Inner Sunset Book Blast!

A message from Barbara Oleksiw, who stages wonderful free volunteer-driven events in her house on the corner of Irving and 6th… she’s collecting books for her annual Book Blast. If you have old books that need a new home… drop them off!


BooksWe’re now collecting for the Inner Sunset Third Usually-Annual Book Blast.
This year, the event will be a full weekend, Saturday/Sunday, April 27 & 28
at the NW corner of Irving & Sixth; Noon until exhaustion.

Feel free to drop books NOW at 1297 Sixth Ave. in our sheltered doorway, in bags/boxes, not too heavy to make my eyes pop out. If necessary, we can pick up your donations, just call. We’d love kids’ books, fiction, dictionaries, books, psychology, science, cookbooks, travel, maps, books, videos, biographies, books, CDs, DVDs, books, paperbacks, history, and books!

**please note: we canNOT accept text books, encyclopedias or magazines, unfortunately.**
This is not a charity event, or a swap and no money will be exchanged…
It is our neighborhood’s effort to recycle books.
Leftover books will be donated to the SF Public Library for their annual fundraiser.

Volunteers *very* welcome (err…needed!) Pls call Barbara:

UCSF and Forest Knolls

I went to UCSF’s long range development plan (LRDP) meeting a couple of days ago. My main interest is in Mount Sutro’s Cloud Forest, but I also wanted to know what the other issues and plans were.

(For more on the Mount Sutro Cloud Forest, go HERE. The meeting report relevant to the forest is HERE.)

UCSF’s plan will be adopted in 2014, and runs to 2035. So they’re looking at issues around UCSF’s growth plans, its impact on neighborhoods, and how to reconcile one with the other. Their full presentation is HERE (as a PDF) on their website.


First, some background. Back in 1976, UCSF had a strategy of stealth acquisition. It quietly acquired a bunch of houses (mainly in the 4th Avenue and 5th Avenue area in the Inner Sunset), used some eminent domain, and planned to knock them down and expand. It was trashing the neighborhood, and the neighbors revolted.  The battle was bitterly fought, and went all the way up to Sacramento.

When the smoke had cleared away, UCSF agreed to limits to growth in the neighborhood.  The UC Regents passed a resolution. This had several important impacts on Forest Knolls.

  1. It agreed to maintain the 61 acres of Sutro Forest as an Open Space. They weren’t going to build on it.
  2. They imposed a limit – 3.55 million — on the total square footage in the Parnassus area. If they built something new, they would knock down something else.
  3. They defined an expansion restriction area in which they would not acquire properties (they cannot accept gifts of properties in this area either. This restriction area – the map in the photo above –  includes Forest Knolls (the line ends at Clarendon).
  4. Recognizing that the influx of people (with the transport requirements and other pressures they bring) was also impacting neighborhoods, they included a goal of limiting the population to 13,400.


UCSF seems to have satisfied conditions 1 and 3. The Sutro Forest is still a forest (for now, anyway). And as far as I know, they haven’t bought anything within the expansion restriction area.

The space ceiling is another story. By 1996, they’d blown through it and were at 3.66 mn sq ft. They planned to reduce the excess by half in the next period, by 2012. That didn’t work. Instead of reducing it, they went even further over the limit. They now have 3.84 mn sq ft, 8.2% over the limit.

The People limit’s also been exceeded. Set at 13,400 in 1976, it had gone to 15,400 in 1996. UCSF adopted a different goal: 16,000 people. They’re well over that now, at nearly 18,000.

So if you’re wondering why Parnassus Avenue seems increasingly crowded every time you go by there – now you know.


The Inner Sunset neighbors were most concerned about traffic and space ceilings. UCSF offered ways to reduce the square footage, the most important being to demolish University Hall. (The UCSF slides discussing those options are HERE as a PDF.)

They are also talking of how to plan for traffic, and for their shuttles. Though we in Forest Knolls aren’t directly affected, it certainly does impact us each time we go down 6th Avenue and through the Parnassus bottleneck.

If anyone wants to get involved, more meetings are planned. The UCSF LRDP website has the details.

The Inner Sunset Gazillion-Family Flea Market 29 Sept 2012

Here it is again: The indefatigable Barbara with another Inner Sunset event!

The Inner Sunset Gazillion-Family Flea Market
Saturday, Sept. 29th, 10a to 4p
NW corner of Sixth & Irving
28 Families already participating!

To reserve a free table, with a $40 deposit, please call Barbara: 415/246-4748
Just two spaces left!

Come buy handicrafts, used clothing, furniture, junk, tools,
games, treasures, artwork, photography, CDs, plants, cookies,
more junk, kids’ clothing, some bric & some brac!