For the first time in their 40-year history, the San Francisco Gay Men’s Chorus (SFGMC) will have a physical space to call home, one that will also double as a first-of-its-kind hub for queer art. SFGMC recently announced that a new National LGBTQ Center for the Arts will open in San Francisco in the near future. Aside from acting as a rehearsal and practice site for SFGMC, the center will also be a destination for publicly-accessible arts, including community performances, events, and programs. Purchased for $9.6 million, the new center—located on 170 Valencia St—will house a cutting-edge media center that will allow the chorus group to start on new programs and offer a meeting space and venue for fellow LGBTQ-identifying creatives. “In its forty-year history, the Chorus has performed at the world’s most prestigious venues, but we have never had our own home,” said Board Chair Keith Pepper. “We are so grateful to Terrence Chan [a founding Chorus member who made a gift of $5 million] and his life partner Edward Sell” added Executive Director Chris Verdugo. “We look forward to working with and alongside other LGBTQ arts organizations while supporting them in their artistic and advocacy endeavors.” Once the ribbon is cut, the SFGMC will start to host ongoing master classes and interview series—featuring such household names like Academy Award-winning composer Stephen Schwartz and The Late Show with Stephen Colbert’s Laura Benanti—community sing-ins, student residency pr
The skies might be gloomy, but we don't have to be. 1. Warm up with a trip to Japantown's Kabuki Springs and Spa. This classic San Francisco oasis is a traditional bathhouse that features a 104-degree communal pool. Shy locals can attend on gender-specific days or keep a swimsuit on in this clothing-optional day spa. A day pass costs $25 and includes use of the sauna and steam room. 2. The chicken with explosive chili peppers at Chinatown's Z&Y Restaurant might just be the spiciest dish in town. If cold weather gives you a case of the blues, this hot (HOT) dinner should have the opposite effect. 3. As temperatures continue to drop, there’s no better evening destination than a bar with a fireplace. Warm your tootsies by the fire as the cocktails and craft beer help you thaw from the inside out. 4. Laughter is the best medicine for almost everything. Luckily for us, San Francisco is home to some truly legendary comedy clubs. Whether you're into big name comics or the underground scene, there are laughs to be had every night of the week. Don't forget: SF Sketchfest is serving up some of the country's best comedy right here in the Bay Area through January 17th. 5. Our go-to for any case of the blues has got to be Musee Mecanique. This Fisherman's Wharf gem is the world's best tourist trap. Filled with vintage arcade games from a variety of centuries, all that's needed for a great time at the Musee is a silliness to brave the tourists and handful of quarters. The
A smorgasbord of funny, Sketchfest brings A-list comedians to the city every January. Now in its 18th year, the annual San Francisco comedy festival will host over 200 shows in eight days in venues across the Bay Area. This year’s festival, which runs from January 10-17, 2019, features major comedy luminaries such as Carol Burnett, Margaret Cho and W. Kamau Bell as well as up-and-coming jokesters from around the Bay Area. The mélange of offerings includes sketch, stand-up, storytelling, improv, film, music, live podcasts, workshops and panel discussions. With so much to choose from, we've narrowed it down to our favorite can't-miss events for the week. Margaret Cho in conversation with Ben Fong-Torres Trailblazing modern comedy icon and former Bay Area resident Margaret Cho returns to the 415 with an onstage conversation and audience Q&A, moderated by Ben Fong-Torres. January 10 at 7:30pm; Marines’ Memorial Theatre; $25-$35. W. Kamau Bell in conversation with Hari Kondabolu Homegrown comedy hero, the Bay Area's own W. Kamau Bell, will sit down for an in-depth conversation with his longtime friend and fellow comedian Hari Kondabolu. January 13 at 4pm; Marines’ Memorial Theatre; $25-$35. Carol Burnett in conversation with Wendie Malick SF Sketchfest pays tribute to Carol Burnett—best known for her comedy show The Carol Burnett Show, that from 1967-1978 introduced a new generation to sketch comedy—during this in-person conversation and Q&A at the hist
A woman's work is never done. For the third year straight, Women’s March San Francisco will take to the streets to host a rally and march centered on human rights, civil liberties and social justice for all. This year's march takes place on January 19th at 11:30am, and will kick off with a rally hosted by comedian and actor Mona Shaikh at Civic Center Plaza. Speakers include advocates and community leaders covering a wide array of issues including anti-semitism, immigration, indigenous peoples rights, LGBTQIA rights and representation, reproductive rights, and socioeconomic and social justice. The lineup includes SF Mayor London Breed; Gilda Gonzales, CEO of Planned Parenthood NorCal and the first Latina to serve as CEO of a California Planned Parenthood affiliate; Annita Lucchesi, who maintains one of the largest databases of cases of missing and murdered indigenous women and girls in Canada and the United States; and award-winning poet, arts educator, community organizer, and mental health advocate Terisa Siagatonu among many others. After the rally, the march will commence at 1:30pm and conclude at the Embarcadero. “We aim to bring together women and allies to reaffirm our commitment to building a positive and just future for all," says Sophia Andary, chair of Women’s March San Francisco. “They heard our Voice in 2017, our Votes in 2018, and in 2019 they will know #TruthToPower.”
Just in time for Valentine's Day festivities, the Hearts in San Francisco art series has brought amazing public art to San Francisco every February for the past 15 years, and this year includes some of the best works yet. Thirty-one Bay Area artists were selected for the 2019 series including Michele Bell, Claudia Blanco, Margerite Bradley, and Taiko Fujimura. "These Heart sculptures have become symbolic to locals and tourists alike," said John Bell, President of the Board of Directors for San Francisco General Hospital Foundation. The hearts will be displayed and auctioned at the San Francisco General Hospital Foundation's Hearts in SF evening event on February 13 at Pier 48 with all proceeds benefiting essential life-enhancing programs and initiatives Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital. Keep scrolling to see some of this year's best heart-shaped artworks. “California Poppy” by Margerite Bradley Heart by Samanta Tello Heart by Lori Chinn "Meet in the Presidio" by Michele Bell
Need a ray of sunshine on this rainy week? Look no further than the just-announced BottleRock Napa Valley lineup. BottleRock returns to Wine Country this May 24–26 with a dreamy line-up of acts you will definitely want to see live. The three-day festival's headliners include Neil Young, Imagine Dragons and Mumford & Sons. But the star power doesn't stop there: Pharrell Williams, Logic, OneRepublic and Lord Huron—as well as Bay Area legends like Santana and Too $hort—will all take over the Napa Valley Expo this spring along with dozens of other acts (see the full lineup announcement below). You can drink in the entire line-up here. Three-day GA tickets start at $359 and go on sale Tuesday, January 8th. One-day tickets will be on sale Thursday, January 10th. Single day GA passes are $159 and single-day VIP tickets are $349. Three-day VIP passes are already sold out, so snap up those wristbands sooner rather than later. If this is your first time in Napa, note that BottleRock features almost as much food and wine as it does rock and roll, including celebrity packed cooking demonstrations on the Culinary Stage. Who can forget the BottleRock 2016 Culinary Stage, where Snoop Dog charmingly rolled sushi with Iron Chef Masaharu Morimoto? (Not us.) Art, wine, and beer round out this annual festival of indulgence. We will absolutely see you there.
If you missed your chance to see the Unreal Garden, or loved it so much you were sad to see it go, immersive media company Onedome is back with a new exhibit called LMNL. Featuring fourteen interactive rooms and installations, LMNL is a collaboration between ten artists who attempted to capture the merging of technology, art, and human connection in each of their exhibits. “With The Unreal Garden, we were literally changing the art gallery experience for the 21st century and with LMNL, we are looking to change the way people explore museum installations by making them a part of the experience,” said Onedome’s chief marketing officer Leila Amirsadeghi. Photograph: Courtesy LMNL As soon as guests descend the staircase into the underground LMNL, it's clear this is no ordinary museum experience. Attendees can wander between installations such as Gabriel Pulecio’s “Kinetic Infinity Room,” a visually jaw-dropping LED mirrored room that appears infinitely large with a revolving catalog of lights and sounds and “Fluid Structures," which features digital walls made of "water." You'll even see a water-version of yourself inside of the installation and be able to have a digital water fight. In an ode to the Unreal Garden, Design I/O’s “Funky Forest” is a digital forest ecosystem that features a digital waterfall. The waterfall's path can be moved around the room with logs and other forest materials. Depending on where the water flows, the forest will conjure creatures from t
It's impossible to turn your nose up at hotel restaurants in San Francisco. In fact, some of our favorite eateries reside inside downtown's hip high rise lodgings—whether old (Kin Khao inside Parc 55) or new (Charmaine's atop Proper Hotel). Union Square's newest addition, Hotel G, is joining this lofty league with the opening of Ayala with chef Bill Montagne (New York's Le Bernardin and Chicago’s Nico Osteria) and Top Chef alum Melissa Perfit (Bar Crudo) in the kitchen. Perfit brings her seafood expertise to the 94-seat dining room, which features a standing-room-only, communal raw bar and an oysterette, separated from the main dining room by a glass partition. Navy banquettes, wood tables, a black-and-gray marble bar and custom white-tiled flooring hint at a subtle nautical theme. Santa Barbara sea urchin at Ayala Photograph: Molly DeCoudreaux It can be hard to choose between the oysters, crudo, trout rillettes and Santa Barbara sea urchin that are all featured on the menu, but don’t miss the seafood charcuterie plate. This dish consists of four different seafood cuts, all cured and cut thin. The quartet currently includes citrus-doused trout, black cod in kombu (kelp) and Chartreuse, halibut accented with grapefruit and fennel, and paper-thin octopus with preserved lemon. Once you've whet your appetite, move on to entrees like cioppino, Dungeness crab and prawns Louie salad. We loved the salty-and-sweet nori spaghettini, dressed in Dungeness crab, white miso
It's finally here! Shake Shack’s first Bay Area location will open Saturday, December 15 at the Stanford Shopping Center in Palo Alto. We're salivating just thinking about it. The menu will feature all the Shack classics, including the ShackBurger, crinkle-cut fries and hand-spun shakes and frozen custard concretes as well as a unique selection of menu items exclusive to the Palo Alto location like the Golden State Double burger featuring two all-natural Angus beef patties from Richards Grassfed Beef, white cheddar cheese, McVicker Pickles bread and butter pickles, all sandwiched between a Tartine Bakery sweet potato bun. Yum. But Tartine isn't the only local business you'll recognize on the menu. For dessert, Shake Shack will be spinning frozen custard concretes in collaboration with local purveyors like Pie Dreams, Dandelion Chocolate and Manresa Bread, while the beverage menu will feature local favorites like Fort Point Beer Company and Broc Cellars. If you're wondering what to order, we recently ranked the entire Shake Shack menu. You're welcome. The space (a former Wells Fargo bank attached to a PF Chang’s) faces a small park and the East Coast-based burger chain has set up tables, chairs, string lights and games reminiscent of the original Shack in Madison Square Park. Make your plans to head to the South Bay this weekend. Shake Shack will be open Mon–Thu, Sun 11am–10pm and Fri–Sat 11am–11pm.
Michael Mina boasts an expansive restaurant empire across the United States and Dubai, but his newest venture is all about island vibes. Trailblazer Tavern fuses Hawaiian fare (Mina also has multiple eateries in the state) with San Francisco sensibilities under the helm of Honolulu-based husband-and-wife team Michelle Karr-Ueoka and Wade Ueoka. Housed in the SalesForce East building downtown, the massive, 7,000-square-foot space oozes aloha spirit, including the phrase "E komo mai, e noho mai, e ‘ai a e, wala‘au" (Come in, come sit, eat, and talk) hanging over the doorway. Inside, a lofty dining room and festive bar sport colorful murals of blue waves and green mountains and are lined with palms and greenery. A narrow outdoor patio is strewn with lights, chairs and tables for an urban tropical atmosphere. Photograph: Nicola Parisi The menu centers around classic Hawaiian fare, including a raw bar, land and sea menu sections and a noodles and rice section. Regional favorites like the North Shore-style Kaua’i shrimp coexist alongside universal Hawaiian classics like Spam musubi or old-school fish and poi poke, served in shareable pupu platters and dim-sum–style plates. Modern twists on the classic fare include unagi butterfish arancini, Dungeness crab lumpia and the mochi-crusted monchong fish. And dessert here is no afterthought; The coffee and cream is made with vanilla tapioca, Manulele coffee panna cotta and coffee gelée with Lamill Coffee shaved ice, while the cre