Fitness + Outdoors
Feeling indoorsy? Table tennis is just as competitive as the full-court version and inspires hundreds of tournaments held all over the globe. In North Beach, players 5- to 75-years-old practice at AMDT Table Tennis Training Center (1968 Powell St. at Lombard), which offers coaching Monday–Friday. The SF Table Tennis Club plays open-challenge games on five tables Monday and Friday 7:30–11 p.m. and on Saturday 1:30–5 p.m at the Potrero Hill Neighborhood House (953 DeHaro St. at Southern Heights). Don’t be surprised if you get crushed by someone your grandfather’s age.
We're praying San Francisco's "summer" will arrive soon. (Please!?) In that spirit, we've decided to forget the current temperature and instead start planning for sun, starting with this guide to the area's dog-friendly beaches. If you're with pup, give these a walk (check their websites for leash rules).
Kehoe Beach: The 0.6 mile trail to the beach is short enough that you can take your dog and kids without them complaining. The beautiful grassy hills, wildflowers, and mustard plants along the trail make the trip worth it. Bring your own food since there aren't many restaurants nearby. (Point Reyes National Seashore, Tomales Bay)
Put your game face on and try out these courts.
Golden Gate Park Tennis Complex
The park’s 21 hard-surface tennis courts are nestled between the Conservatory of Flowers and the Children’s Playground. The trees deter the wind from ruining your serve, and courts are typically first come, first served. Players of all levels go for pickup games and private and group lessons ($50 and $20). It’s also the site of the annual City Open. The tournament takes place over the last weekend of August and first weekend of September.
For years, the Embarcadero Rowing Club, a 31 year-old club that specializes in the niche activity of whaleboat rowing, has been hosting recreational rows on Tuesdays and Sundays, free and open to the public.
The boats are more Captain Ahab than Winklevoss — they're 26-foot whaleboats optimally made for 10 people: 8 rowers, a coxswain and a bowhook. They hearken to an era when hunting whales was acceptable sport, but now are used as part of an invigorating and novel team sport in the Bay Area.
There are only two Thursdays left in July, which means there are only two SFBC Happy Hours left! SFBC happy hour is like those magical hours at your favorite bar but instead of deals on booze in one palce, the SFBC pick a location along popular commutes each week and offers tasty treats, a free tire pumping, and deals at local businesses. This week's happy hour is at Fell and Masonic, so for those of you who regularly wiggle your way home to the Haight and beyond, this is your chance to catch some free stuff during your commute. Next week catch happy hour at Duboce Park. SFBC Happy hour runs from 5-7.
Bay Area urbanites are escaping to the forest to dangle from cable-thin ropes as they take death-defying, high-speed leaps into nothingness. And the scenery is pretty rockin’ too. From Wine Country to Gold Country, Tahoe to Santa Cruz, we’ve got a birds-eye view on the best ziplining adventures in Northern California.
Where: Occidental, CA
Thought last year's urban zip-line in Justin Herman Plaza was cool? Try rappelling 36 floors off of the Grand Hyatt rooftop, right down into Union Square. Seriously. This Friday and Saturday (July 22-23) you'll have the opportunity to do just that at Over the Edge, an adrenaline pumping fundraising adventure, benefiting the Special Olympics of Northern California. Last year, Over the Edge raised $100,000 and, this year, they're looking to seriously up that number.
Like the good Giants fans we are, we caught the premiere of “The Franchise” last night, the Showtime series chronicling the ball club’s post-World Series season and its quest to hold on to the championship. For those of you who missed it, here are the highlights:
1. Barry Zito is not bitter about the difficulties that have plagued his pitching the last few years. To the contrary, Zito appeared philosophical, humble, and team-oriented. This may be due to his yoga practice, which looked surprisingly elegant. Zito held a stoic Tree Pose while his trainer watched, balanced impressively in Natarajasana, and his Warrior II was expertly aligned.
On June 8, 2011, the San Francisco Giants beat the Washington Nationals at AT&T Park, 3-1. Matt Cain pitched a complete game, and struck out 11. But otherwise, it was just another game for the reigning World Series champs.
Except for Joel Zimei. It was a pretty big day for him. You’ve probably never heard of Joel. Which is funny, because he is one of the most popular members of the Giants organization.
Since 1999, Joel has been the man behind Lou Seal, the loveable team mascot. Since he took the job 12 years ago, he has never missed a home game. Which meant that on June 8, Joel celebrated his 1000th consecutive home game as the Giants mascot, which is the longest-running streak amongst mascots in all of Major League Baseball.