San Francisco Fleet Week took place last week and featured events throughout city parks that honored the contributions of the men and women of the United States Armed Forces. Bark in the Park took place again in Duboce Park last Saturday from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. and featured demonstrations of dogs trained in urban search and rescue, detection, and more. Men and women in uniform and their service dogs mixed with residents of the Duboce Triangle and local canines. 

The 32st Street Brass Band performed at Noe Valley Town Square and the 1st Marine Division Band performed at Argonne Playground. Marina Green hosted the Fleet Week Celebration and Air Show and was home to the Humanitarian Assistance Village and STEM Education Center, an interactive demonstration of U.S. Military and Civil capabilities in a disaster. 


Volunteer DayOur next volunteer days are Saturday, October 13th and Saturday November 10th, 10 a.m.-noon. We will continue planting behind the Harvey Milk Recreation Center and have about 25-30 plants and mulch to install.  A special thanks to the September volunteers who cleaned and planted in the beds behind the Recreation Center and the August volunteers who weeded and planted in the pollinator bed (triangle) between the basketball court and the playground and weeded the Pierce Street circle.

Contact rose@friendsofdubocepark.org or 415-255-8370 for more information or with any questions or comments. Our volunteer day is always the second Saturday of every month. 30 minutes or an hour of your time makes a big difference in the appearance of our park. Volunteers gave more than 203,000 hours of their time and energy to improving our 225 parks and recreation facilities in 2017. Those hours are equal to $6 million in park services.


coyoteAccording to Camilla Fox of Project Coyote, coyotes are all over San Francisco and most of San Francisco’s green space probably has coyotes. San Francisco Animal Care and Control estimates that there are approximately twenty living in the city. There have been reports of coyote sightings in Golden Gate Park, Alamo Square, the Panhandle, Glen Park, and other parks.

Coyotes are critical components to our city’s local ecosystem. They have essentially replaced the role of other predators like wolves, and can have a positive impact on the ecosystem by benefitting ecological integrity and species diversity, says Fox. For example, coyotes help keep rodent populations in check by eating gophers, squirrels, and rats. “More rodent-eating predators on the landscape like coyotes and birds of prey means less rodenticides and other deadly poisons that kill non-target animals,” she says.

Most of the time coyotes want to have nothing to do with us. But like dogs, coyotes are naturally curious animals so they may check us out. To avoid conflicts, it’s important to keep cats indoors and dogs on leashes where there are leash laws. While coyotes are largely carnivorous, they can eat just about anything, from fruit to insects to vegetation. To prevent coyotes from coming into your yard, try to minimize or reduce attractants by cleaning up fallen fruit in your yard.

But be aware that coyotes live in our open spaces and parks. Be especially vigilant during pupping season (between April and August) when coyote families may try to protect their young from off-leash dogs. Do not feed coyotes. f you see a coyote, appreciate it from a distance. If you are approached by a coyote, act big and make loud noises.


VERASPHEREThe Verasphere photo show opened at the Harvey Milk Photo Center in Duboce Park on September 21 and continues through October 14.

David Faulk (“Mrs. Vera”) and Michael Johnstone started creating art together in 1994 by photographing Mrs. Vera in Snapshots and Mrs. Vera’s Daybook Series of photographs, an on-going photo series examining everyday life, alienation, magic and survival.

This provided them with relief from the anguish of the AIDS epidemic. Both men had been members of creative, vibrant groups of artists, drag queens, club performers, and theater people that were decimated by the epidemic.  Mrs. Vera enabled David and Michael “not to dwell on all the loss” going on around them.

For their audiences, Mrs. Vera magically gave everyone permission to be silly and outrageous, with Michael there to make the photographs, to bear witness and make art of it.  They continue to make art to this day and often engage friends to participate in group performances. As a group, they are called Verasphere.

Mrs. Vera’s and Michael’s greatest contribution to the world may be simply the exuberant joy they foment wherever they go – LGBTQ events, street fairs, festivals, and the annual San Francisco LGBTQ Pride Parade, before which the two conduct Michael and Mrs. Vera consider themselves to be direct descendants of the outrageous 1970s theatrical troupe the Cockettes, “turning up impromptu in many places, both appropriate and inappropriate… without the acid!”

David and Michael are still out there, giving people permission to be silly and outrageous, still encouraging us not to dwell on loss and gloom, still inviting us to participate in Mrs. Vera’s brand of larger-than-life joy — the perfect antidote to the stormy future we face in 2018.


Shooting photographs on location is very different than taking photographs in the studio. The Photo Center is offering three courses on location outside this month that will help you deal with the variables that come up outside.

Intro – Night Photography on Mare Island on October 20 Saturday is a workshop for photographers who would like to learn how to make proper exposures (film or digital) after dark, with moonlight or existing artificial light. After completing this workshop students will be able to make a wide variety of low-light situations, from relatively short, to longer exposures. This location is rich in subject matter, from 100-150-year-old buildings, massive ship building equipment and historic mansions, and numerous military artifacts. 
The Poetics of Space, on October 22-24, deals with space, whether physical, psychological, or poetic. Space can be a beautiful idyllic place or that troubling personal or collective memory we sometimes inhabit It is up to artist to interpret and best define space. This class will look at space as a reaction to personal and emotional experiences sometimes giving us more questions than answers. Students will look at work that deals with space, create work and have a photographic field trip.  

Model Photography on Location, on Sundays October 21 and 28 offers students the opportunity to collaborate with a professional model in an outdoor setting. Students will learn to communicate with their subject, work with the light, and use the model and location to create dramatic, narrative moments, yielding strong photos. This workshop is centered around conceptual development. Minimal technical instruction will be given.

The 2018 Fall Activities catalogue has the complete class schedule and description of all courses offered at the Photo Center. Check out the Summer class offerings online at sfreconline.org or pick up the catalogue of courses at the Center. Don’t hesitate to call the Photo Center at (415) 554-9522 with any questions.


paintThe word encaustic originates from the Greek word enkausticos, which means to burn in. Heat and pigment infused beeswax are necessary for a painting to be called encaustic. This class will cover a brief history of the medium, the diversity of encaustic painting, explanations of tools and materials, techniques used, visual references and a hands-on approach. Each student will complete two unique pieces of art. Students are encouraged to bring collage materials including photographs and 2 dimensional personal keepsakes (can be photocopied). All other materials will be provided.
Three workshops take place on October 20, November 3, and December 1, all 10 a.m.-4 p.m. and is open to all painting and art making skill levels. The same class is also offered twice to youth ages 8-13 on October 27 and November 10. These classes are not as long, being offered from 12 p.m.-3 p.m.There are almost 1,500 activities to choose from this fall, including 42 classes at the Harvey Milk Recreation Center for the Arts and 52 photography courses in the Photo Center. The complete catalogue of classes is available online  or pickup the 120-page catalogue in the lobbies of the Rec Center and Photo Center.Recreation and Parks offers Recreation Scholarships to eligible individuals and families. More than $1 million in scholarships in Rec and Parks programs has been provided. Ongoing eligibility is dependent on attendance record. Please call Lillian Bautista, Scholarship Coordinator, at (415) 831-2717 for information on how to qualify.


basketballDuboce Park’s heavily-used basketball court will be resurfaced sometime this fall, according to Dennis Kern, Director of Operations for Rec and Park. The court is at the top of the queue of court repairs and will be the next city park basketball court to be resurfaced.

Besides being used by the After School Enrichment Program (ASEP), Summer Camp, and skateboarding classes, the court receives plenty of regular use from local hoopsters. Two of the six baskets are only eight feet high, which is two feet lower than a standard hoop, and is very popular with our younger, smaller users.

As has been the case for years, the most heavily used sections of the Dog Play Area (DPA) are turn brown and are bare during the dry months of the year, specifically, the edges of the lawn near the Potomac Street benches and a few worn sections in the middle of the DPA. The area around the benches in the upper lawn are also bare and Rec and Park gardeners have been setting up extra irrigation as interim fix, according to Michelle Pallavicini, Park Services Manager.

Rec & Park has tried a number of times recently to fix the problem by fencing off those areas and putting in new sod and/or adding new dirt and seed but heavy use adversely affects those areas, especially during the dry months of the year.



The San Francisco Model Yacht Club celebrated 120 years of model boating at Spreckels Lake in Golden Gate Park on September 16. The club is the oldest model yacht club in the Americas and is devoted to the building and sailing of model yachts, both power and sail. Dozens of boats were on display and sailing on the lake. Members often show and sail their boats on Sundays.

big truckBig Truck Day is back! Bring the little ones out to McLaren Park (John Shelly Drive and Mansell) on October 10, from 10 a.m. to noon, to explore, play and learn all about the city trucks that keep our city working. Explore trucks from different city agencies, see them in action and listen to the sounds they make! Free.
Scaregrove returns to Stern Grove (19th Avenue and Sloat Boulevard), on Friday, October 26 from 3 to 9 p.m. This year’s event will feature a costume contest and parade, haunted houses, hay rides, carnival rides, giant inflatables, food for sale and live entertainment. Cost is $10 per person; children under 2 years old are free!  For advanced tickets, call (415) 831-6800.  In addition, volunteers are needed for a wide range of jobs, from haunted house characters to face painting! If you are interested in volunteering or would like more information, click here

hardlystrictlyThe 18th Annual Hardly Strictly Bluegrass 2018 took place on October 5-7 in Hellman Hollow, Lindley, and Marx Meadows in Golden Gate Park with 80 musical artists playing on six stages. Performers included Alison Kraus, Graham Nash, Mavis Staples, Emmylou Harris, Ani DiFranco and more. The three-day musical extravaganza was free and attracted about 750,000 people.


Annual Membership dues for a Supporting Member are $25 per person and entitle you to voting privileges and participation in the governance of the organization. Your dues help cover the few costs we have, such as our website, newsletter, movie nights, and insurance.

Your tax-deductible membership is gratefully accepted and should be sent to Friends of Duboce Park, 79 Scott Street, San Francisco, CA 94117. Friends of Duboce Park are a 501(c)(3) organization. General Membership is still available at no cost but does not carry any voting privileges. Another way to show your support is by getting involved. If you are interested, please contact President Doug Woo at doug@friendsofdubocepark.org.

Our Mission Statement includes the following: “to organize and represent the collective interests regarding Duboce Park; to beautify and promote safety within Duboce Park; and, to initiate and/or support beneficial neighborhood projects on behalf of Duboce Park.”

Saturday, October 13, 10 a.m.-noon. Friends of Duboce Park Volunteer Day. Contact Rose at rose@friendsofdubocepark.org or 415-255-8370.

Saturday, November 10 a.m.-noon. Friends of Duboce Park Volunteer Day. Contact Rose at rose@friendsofdubocepark.org or 415-255-8370.

Saturday, December 8, 10 a.m.-noon. Friends of Duboce Park Volunteer Day. Contact Rose at rose@friendsofdubocepark.org or 415-255-8370.

Monday, December 10, Duboce Triangle Neighborhood Association General Meeting,7-9 p.m. Gazebo Room on CPMC Davies Campus. Visit dtna.org.

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