San Francisco is known around the world as a hub for arts and culture. The East Bay is ... not. But this side of the bridge rocks its own soulful, underground art scene, as evidenced by our three favorite reasons to cross the Bay Bridge this weekend:
Halloween isn’t just for kids. Certainly not in the Bay Area. But the 21 and ups can’t have all the fun right? Mark your calendars because The Coachwhips (one of John Dwyer of Thee Oh Sees’ edgier previous bands before his latest project began evolving in the same direction. Guess it all comes full circle?) and Total Trash Booking have heeded our prayers and added a second “all ages” show to their trans-Bay Halloween Bash. Clearly the popular demand is deafening and the show’s promoters are listening.
The East Bay is huge and spans several worthy cities and towns, but this weekend it's all about Oakland. Head eastward for a great sampling of everything that makes Oakland cool: Fantastic food, cool music, and the great outdoors.
Now that Oakland's biggest festival of all things food, drink and DIY is in its fourth year, most food-conscious types know that Eat Real Fest is a big deal. Proof positive: 150,000 enthusiasts are expected to attend this weekend, starting at 1 pm on Friday and going until the last keg is drained on Sunday at 5 pm. Admission is free, but bring cash for all the vendors, and invest in a pair of elastic waistband pants for maximum benefits. Here now, our guide to the madness.
One of the best things about the East Bay isn't the plentiful parking or the warm temperatures, it's the community. Even the bigger towns of the East Bay–Oakland, Berkeley, Walnut Creek–aren't tourist attractions, they're just places where people live, and those people tend to get out and hang together. Here are three of the best ways to get a dose of East Bay community spirit this weekend:
Every city’s subway has a distinct smell. It’s the first sense that announces to my traveling soul – yes, I’ve arrived.
But you, BART, arguably, do not have a scent as strong as that of New York City, or Boston, or Chicago. Those who debate might trace your aroma to a funky mix of mold, sweat, and the last food illegally consumed on board.
What you do have is a very distinct sound - an alto whistle that crescendos into a muted shrill as you reach maximum speed. This sound is as recognizable as the dank smell of our fellow metro’s transit. To me, BART, it means home.
Afro-Danish threads, organic soft serve and geological mysteries are just a few of the gems waiting for you in the East Bay this weekend. Not to mention the sunshine. Have we mentioned lately that the East Bay has good weather?
The East Bay artisan bagel-off continues to heat up with another entrant to the race this week, but perfect bagels aren’t the only reason to cross the bridge. This weekend an indie rock concert in the vineyards and a fabulous Barry McGee exhibit are also big draws.
The problem is, there are loads of amazing spots to nosh and drink in the 510. So many, in fact, that we split our top picks into four parts categorized by neighborhood. In our final installment, we continue with Rockridge, Piedmont, and Montclair.