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Transported: Biking for Newbies

Welcome to "Transported," our new weekly series about getting places in San Francisco, whether you take the bus or the BART, bike or drive. Come here to find the skinny on secret parking spots, the new bike lanes and how to get across town on Muni without losing your mind.

So, you've finally caved, ditched Muni for good and gotten yourself a bicycle. You want to learn to bike the city without getting killed, right? First tip: Wear a helmet. Here are some more to get you started.

Easy bike routes to practice your skills:

The world-famous Wiggle is a gradually-climbing route that zig zags through the city and has long been used (on foot and on horseback) as an easy way to navigate San Francisco. It starts at the Ferry Building and takes you through major neighborhoods like downtown, the Castro, Panhandle, the Haight and Golden Gate Park. Use Market Street's new green bike lanes until you hit the Castro and Lower Haight. You'll be on Fell Street, a high speed, one-way road, for only one block before you hit the Panhandle, which will take you to Golden Gate Park. Once you're in the park, relax and enjoy the scenery.

Hardly Strictly Bluegrass: The Best of Friday, Saturday and Sunday

It's as if the Hardly Strictly Bluegrass gods knew they were scheduling their free concert chock full of world-class acts the same weekend many of us have to begrudgingly hand over our rent checks. But obviously that's not the real reason we're excited for the festival. Here's a day-by-day look at the best of the festival.

Friday, October 1

If you're an early bird, head to Golden Gate Park to catch MC Hammer on the Star Stage at 11:30 am. Question is: will he be sporting his magical hammer pants?

The Mission Bicycle Festival & Tour De Fat Take Over the Mission & Golden Gate Park This Weekend

If you've got a bike and a free day this weekend, get pedaling to the Mission Bicycle Festival. It's a two-day celebration of all things two-wheeled that kicks off on Saturday with a three-mile ride from Mission Bicycles at 776 Valencia to Golden Gate Park's Tour De Fat.

Transported: Muni's Most Scenic Bus Routes

Welcome to "Transported," our new weekly series about getting places in San Francisco, whether you take the bus or the BART, bike or drive. Come here to find the skinny on secret parking spots, the new bike lanes and how to get across town on MUNI without losing your mind.

A lot of us see Muni only as a means to an end, and that's mostly what it is. But that isn't to say you can't enjoy yourself for $2: let Muni take you on some scenic SF tours (sans parking hassles). Below are some of our favorite bus routes. Tell us some of your favorites in the comments.

Opera in the Park to Serenade Hippie Hill This Sunday

This Sunday, opera takes Hippie Hill back from the drum circles. Spread out a blanket in Golden Gate Park for a leisurely afternoon of opera floating through the trees to soothe your soul before another work week.

The Bloomingdale's Catalog Gets the Golden Gate Park Treatment

Stow Lake is, hands down, one of my favorite sections of Golden Gate Park. Ever been? It's tucked a little off the main road and far enough into the park to not get a slew of visitors, and it's gorgeous–truly a little oasis of calm in the city. It's a great for a casual walk on a nice day, which is just what I was in the middle of doing a few months back when I stumbled upon a photo shoot. Normally I pass those by–there are a surprising number going on throughout the park on weekdays–but this one featured home decor, so naturally I had to investigate.

This Week's Hottest Events: Outside Lands, Literary Death Match and Dolores Park Documentary

Food+Wine: TasteTV Taste-Off
You be the judge. Be amongst the 100-plus people at Press Club this Wednesday for TasteTV's first annual Wine and Food Pairing Taste-Off. You'll sample six combinations of seasonal plates with four reds and two whites. Let your opinion be known so that Press Club can determine the best pairing to add to their lounge menu and smile pretty. You might just be on camera. $45; Wednesday, 8/11; Press Club, 20 Yerba Buena Lane, 415-744-5000, tastetv.com

Golden Gate Park: A Map of Park Activities

From baseball to boating, dancing to disc golf. GG Park is a players paradise. Click around the map below to find out where to play tennis, roller skate, lawn bowl, boat, swing dance, golf and play baseball.

Tour de Fat: A Ballyhoo of Bikes and Beer!

We posted a few weeks ago about Tour de Fat and the Car-for-Bike Trade. Find out who won this Saturday at Tour de Fat in Golden Gate Park! The day begins at 11am with a bike parade (registration at 10a, see bottom of page for pre-registration) and performances at Speedway start at noon. This year's lineup includes March Fourth Marching Band and Sean Hayes, along with cabaret and circus performances. Celebrate the Car-for-Bike Trade winner's switch to two wheels beginning with a funeral procession at 2:30 and the official ceremony at 4:30. And of course, since the event is sponsored by New Belgium Brewing, spend your afternoon drinking tasty beers (and far more than just Fat Tire). The event is family friendly but be sure to bring ID to drink and cash for beer tokens. Curtain closes at 5pm. If the weather people are right, it should be a beautiful afternoon.

Michael Franti, Alanis Morissette Brings Peaceful To The Park

It may not be 1967, but you can think of the 11th annual Power to the Peaceful Festival as a modern-day summer of love. Best known as Michael Franti’s pet project, the two-day music, yoga, art and action event is a weekend dedicated to service towards peace. The Bay Area-born musician has always carried a message of unity with his work and PTTP is an extension of that philosophy. It’s all about plugging the community into ways they can, as individuals, help people and the planet.

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