Posts Tagged ‘save stow lake’

We’re Already Well Into May 2012, So Whatever Happened to that Long-Promised Lawsuit over the Stow Lake Boathouse?

Wednesday, May 9th, 2012

I haven’t heard word one about the long-promised lawsuit what was going to overturn SFGov and re-install the old tenant as the operator.

The civil lawsuit begins March 2012 and will expose the truth about all the many laws that Rec & Park broke in order to bring in an out-of-state chain, with no boating experience to take over this historic boating recreation site.”

Oh well.

Just saying.

Ah, Stow Lake:

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Oh, and the early reviews are in. And they’re pretty good, those reviews.

Leave us close this chapter of wealthy, white, real-estate-obsessed, dingbat, millionaire homeowner Preservationists vs. the Boathouse at Stow.

Public No-Shows Public Meeting Regarding the Future of the Stow Lake Boathouse – Plus, Spurious Lead Paint Issue

Monday, January 30th, 2012

I don’t know, when you have like just one member of the public show up at a meeting hosted by Rec and Park, would you call that a successful joint?

This was the scene for last Thursday night’s big PowerPoint presentation. You had people there from the new tenant and the new tenant’s Marin operation and RPD and etc.

Is this low turnout due to the fact that grand battle has already been won by the new tenant, or is it due to the fact that there was zero publicity for this particular meeting,* or maybe a combination of both reasons?

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Anyway, the latest developments at Stow are detailed here by Rachel Gordon.

And oh, the lawsuit against the City from the old tenant should have some activity soon, maybe something is scheduled for Superior Court in March 2012.

And the latest from the absurdly-named Save Stow Lake Coalition has to do with paint with lead in it, which, Gentle Reader, I’m sitting two yards from right now. And, this is true for you too, G.R. You know, ’cause paint with some amount of lead in it is everywhere. Simply everywhere. (If it turns out that this coalition is some long-running anti-NIMBY performance art project, I won’t be surprised…)

Not with a bang, but with a whimper.

Enjoy your upcoming rain-free, vernal paddle-boating season, everybody…

*I don’t know, was this meeting posted on the internet anywhere at all? NTMK.

The Next Big Public Meeting for the Stow Lake Boathouse is on January 26th, But, Shhhhhh, It’s a Secret

Tuesday, January 24th, 2012

Here’s the word on the street:

“The Recreation and Park Department and Ortega Family Enterprises are hosting a community meeting to discuss the upcoming renovations of the Stow Lake Boathouse. The work will include creating an indoor seating area so that the building is open to the public for the first time, adding an accessible bathroom, upgrading the building systems as well as upgrading the general condition of the building.

Date: January 26, 2012
Time: 7PM
Location: Hall of Flowers (County Fair Building)”

But, am I getting punk’d here? ‘Cause I can’t find any evidence of this meeting online.

Now, I can find the Save Stow Lake insanity* webpage, right here.

And, I can find the Official Twitter for Stow Lake Boathouse LLC, right here.

But, to review, I can’t find any evidence of this meeting online.

Oh hey, look, it’s Ortega Family Enterprises’ Armand Ortega hisself, at the last big Boathouse meeting (the last one that I know of, anyway) at the Hall of Flowers.**

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Oh well.

*Uh, Ortega Family Enterprises has “boating experience” now, doesn’t it? You might want to change that. And do you want the City and County poking about buildings in your real estate empire looking for paint with lead in it? I’d bet they’d find some. Oh no! And shrillness-wise, you’re giving us a 9. How about giving us a 3 instead? All right, take two, roll film, action.

**Yes, that’s the actual color of the interior of the Hall of Flowers. I call it indescribable green.

Yelp Fraud: New Stow Lake Boathouse a Huge Success in Golden Gate Park, But Old Regime Just Can’t Let Go

Wednesday, November 30th, 2011

[UPDATE: Bagdad by the Bay just looked into things.]

Well, everything’s going great at your new and improved yet-pretty-much-the-same-except-for-the-food Stow Lake Boathouse in Golden Gate Park.

Here’s what it looks like these days:

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Just check the Yelp for early reviews. They’re almost all highly positive.*

But what’s this? Some “brother” from Oakland, “Les. L,” is not happy, not one bit! He’s the only Yelper giving a less than positive review.

I’ll allege that Les is not some youngish dude from Oakland, but rather a wealthy, white, preservationist-minded, NIMBY-mentalitied, real-estate-obsessed, highly-opinionated woman of a certain age who lives in the West Bay.

Let’s check it out her one-star report:

“What happened to the cool local people that worked there?”

Um, this is an improbable start to a Yelp review. Gee, maybe they busy themselves with sock puppetry on Yelp these days, just like you, “Les L?”

“Everyone we saw was white, which is weird for SF. We drove over from the East Bay to rent boats with my 2 kids and my mom.”

Oh what’s that, Les? There’s not enough flava for you over here in the West Bay? That’s funny? Did you know that all the people behind the old boat house and the Save the Boat House Coalition are white, or pretty much? What were you expecting?

“The kids couldn’t reach the pedals in the boat we rented. How’s that? It’s for kids, right?”

The old boats, the ones sold off for $500, maybe they were inappropriate for adults? Maybe the kids can just come along for the ride? A paddleboat is a paddleboat, pretty much.

“After a unhappy boatride, my mom tripped on the crappy stairs in front of the boathouse. She was bleeding, the kids were crying, and no one bothered to help us.”

What were you unhappy about, Les? That Bruce lost his lease? It happens. Or you were unhappy because there were too many Whities about?

“An old man sitting on a bench helped us and said the boathouse was just taken over by a New Mexico chain. We won’t be back.”

More improbability. Oh well.

Oddly, Les L., straight outta Oak-Town, also has a big beef with Chicago Title Co. in lily-white Campbell, CA, the wealthiest(?) part of the South Bay.

And, oddly, “his” dentist, with whom “he” also has a big beef, is clear all the way in the burbs of the West Bay.

On It Goes…

*Perhaps too positive. “Ashley c.” is a another one of those Yelp fraudsters, it would appear.

Stow Lake Boathouse Update: Open for Business – New Paint, Slow Pace, Room for Old People – Photos

Friday, October 14th, 2011

Well, lots of things are pretty much the same these days at the Stow Lake Boathouse, which was reopened by the new tenant on Wednesday, October 12th, 2011.

See? 

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Check the new photo gallery – it’s quite complete.

But, here’s something new. It’s a sign in honor of boathouse founder Mr. Cal Tilden & the McLellan* Family, 1946-2011:

(Quite civil to post this sign, if you ask me.)

Get more deets via Aaron Sankin - here’s Huffington Post San Francisco going long-form on this issue: Stow Lake Boathouse Fight: A Battle For the Soul Of Golden Gate Park. Or there’s this here, if you want to click through the lengthy history over the prior months and years…

Le mise-en-scene:

If anything, the pace of life is even slower than that of the era of the prior tenant. Nobody’s hurried at all. And there’s more room, more benches for “old people” to lollygag about.

And here’s your new Boathouse Dog, which is from a better supplier and which is being sold at a cheaper price:

Yes, pink popcorn from Wright’s:

All the players:

And what’s this, new paint, finally, after all these years? These guys started working on Wednesday:

So there you have it.

*Yes, that’s a rapping raven, a confabulating corvid at the end of the first video, calling for a boycott of the boathouse.

Presenting Your Stow Lake Boathouse & Cafe “Restoration Time” Menu: $3.25 Hot Dogs, $6.95 Sustainable Tuna Salads

Wednesday, October 12th, 2011

At long last, it’s here. It’s the interim menu for our Stow Lake Boathouse & Cafe.

Is this menu too foo-foo yuppie for you? Is $3.25* too much for a Let’s Be Frank grass-fed beef** hot dog?

As always, You Make The Call: 

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*Well, I’ll tell you, that’s cheaper than what the former tenant was charging. Here’s some more from the clinically-absurd SaveStowLake.org crowd:

“Seniors will no longer be able to gather freely at the boathouse. Prices will be more than doubled on all food items. Middle class and low-income families will be driven out of this spot that is designed to be for all…not just the wealthy.”

I’ll tell you, everything that the Save Stow Lake people have predicted has turned out to be shrill, alarmist bullcrap. JMO.

** These snappy dogs are loaded with flavor, not junk! Using premium cuts from cattle raised on pasture in California (naturally high in healthy Omega 3 fatty acids!) and organic spices, we’ve crafted a delicious dog that’s lower in fat, calories and sodium than conventional franks. No nitrites, nitrates, hormones, or antibiotics, ever.”

It’s Official: The Stow Lake Boathouse & Cafe Will Open Wednesday – And Here are the New Boats

Monday, October 10th, 2011

[UPDATE: Rachel Gordon has the deets of Opening Day right here.]

I don’t know, if I had an expired lease with the City and County of San Francisco and they asked me to leave by a certain date, I think I’d leave by that date. But the former tenant at the Stow Lake Boathouse doesn’t roll that way, so he kept on running the place, overstaying his lease, defending an eviction action through the drier $pring and $ummery tourism months. The result is that the new tenant is taking over in Autumn, in the rain. O.K., did that help San Francisco? No.

Also, the old tenant charged $25 per hour for paddleboats and $20 for rowboats until he got caught, even though the contracted rate was for $20 and $15 per hour. O.K., did that help San Francisco? No.

Oh, and the workers for the former tenants left little surprises for the new tenants haha. O.K., did that help San Francisco? No.

Oh, and the trial pitting the former tenant against all of us is skedded for March 2012.

Moving on…

Your new Stow Lake Boathouse & Cafe will open on Wednesday, October 12th, 2011, rain or shine, boats and food. It’s official ‘n stuff.

Meet your new fleet:

1. Electric boat – lead-acid type batteries, like from Your Father’s Oldsmobile;

2. Paddleboat – Captain and First Officer/Stoker facing forward with two passengers facing rearward;

3. Rowboat

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And actually, the forecast is for Cloudless Skies on Wednesday, so you’ll be richly rewarded if you skip out of work to see the soft opening.

See you there!

Rain Delay: Our New Stow Lake Boathouse and Cafe Won’t Be Opening This Week – How About Next Week?

Tuesday, October 4th, 2011

Well, it seems that rain has delayed the planned quick fixes to our historic Stow Lake Boathouse, so don’t expect it to open by the promised October 6th deadline. The place is a ghost town right now.

Oh, and there were a few unanticipated electrical issues in the kitchen too.

Oh, and a little while back there was a hole in the Stow Lake levy that cropped up right near the boathouse during the long-planned repaving job for, among other places, the Stow Lake area and a good section of JFK.

Oh, and the swan boats, well, you’re going to have start a petition to get those any time soon. But they’ll have plenty of regular, non-avian-themed paddle boats.

In any event, work proceeds. Get all the deets on the new and official website.

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And if you want to rent a bike in Golden Gate Park, you’ll need to go to the new vendor:

ParkWide Activities LLC

You’ll find them operating behind the bandshell in the Music Concourse betwixt our de Young Museum and California Academy of Sciences.

Their Grand Opening will be next week but they’re open for business now, even during these rainy days.

Bon courage, SLBH and ParkWide.

Stow Lake Boathouse and Café to Reopen by October 6 – New Website, Blog, Twitter Account, Manifesto

Saturday, October 1st, 2011

Well, per the people at the Stow Lake Boathouse, the joint will reopen soon:

“We will reopen operations with food service and boat rentals no later than October 6th.”

Here’s how it looks today, with a fresh layer of asphalt:

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Here’s the Twitter and the Facebook and the blog.

And here’s the manifesto:

“A trip to Golden Gate Park isn’t complete without a sojourn to Stow Lake Boathouse. Join us for a relaxing boat ride that will transport you to an idyllic retreat in the heart of San Francisco. Share time with friends and family at our nostalgic boathouse café. Invite the peace of nature to your day with an excursion to one of America’s most visited city parks.

We are very excited about our proposed vision for the Stow Lake Boathouse and Café. Our highly sustainable new caféimprovements to the boathouse itself, and our new and improved fleet of boats offer a number of benefits to the City and visitors to Golden Gate Park.

Stow Lake is a valuable part of San Francisco’s heritage and it needs to stay that way. It should remain a venue for grassroots and other volunteer organizations, while becoming a place where future generations can learn firsthand about the variety and complexity of nature. Stow Lake is also home to many plant and animal species. It hosts so many natural wonders, that it’s hard to believe such a marvelous ecosystem exists so close to downtown San Francisco.

We pledge to be outstanding stewards of Stow Lake, and to work with our community partners in order to further the awareness and appreciation of this beautiful microenvironment. By establishing meaningful partnerships with local groups, we plan to continue and curate the legacy of Stow Lake for the San Franciscans of today as well as tomorrow. We are dedicated to meeting and exceeding existing stewardship standards in order to preserve and protect the richness of these plant and animal species, as this community has done in the past.”

OK then.

But at least 36 people on Gaia’a Green Earth don’t approve of the new tenant:

It’s not over yet! The civil lawsuit begins March 2012 and will expose the truth about all the many laws that Rec & Park broke in order to bring in an out-of-state chain, with no boating experience to take over this historic boating recreation site.”

March 2012, huh? Sounds like a long ways off at this point.

Anyway, bon courage, new Stow Lake Boathouse and Café.

Stow Lake is Closed From September 19-23, Per This Sign – A Quiet Time for the Boathouse

Monday, September 19th, 2011

Here’s a tour of the Stow Lake Boathouse area these days.

Looks like you won’t be able to park your car around the lake this week:

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They’ll probably let you walk around most of the place most of the time, but the whole area will be getting worked on through the end of September 2011, looks like.

The boats are gone:

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And the protest signs as well:

Frank Klein has the keys now:

“Got the keys to Stow Lake Boathouse today! Great feeling beginning to restore this landmark property for the next generations of SF residents”