Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Join us today July 31st from 3-5pm for Wine & Cheese Event!
Enjoy wine and cheese, tour our business center, and network with other professionals.

RSVP to:
Chundra Gill
at 415-889-9244 (text or call)
or or GM, Valisa Valdois at

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Tuesday, July 30, 2013

PROHIBIT Tools of Violence and Vandalism during a Demonstration

Dear Mayor Quan:

On behalf of the thousands of members of the Oakland Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce and our Affiliated Merchants, I write to you in SUPPORT of the Ordinance Prohibiting the Possession of the Tools of Violence and Vandalism during a Demonstration.

After just one recent demonstration that included thousands of dollars in property destruction and thousands more in lost wages and business opportunity I wrote an open letter calling for action.  Among the questions I posed was the following:

 If someone brings a crowbar, hammer or object uncommon to a peaceful demonstration, then why are they not held, identified and questioned?

This ordinance clarifies what steps the Oakland Police Department can take to prevent personal harm and property damage. 

It is not necessary to bring a club, impact resistant shield, sling shot, hammer, large wrench, fireworks, paint projectiles, nor fire accelerants to a demonstration.  In fact the presence of these items not only threatens human life and property they threaten to undermine the expression of any idea.

I urge you to SUPPORT this ordinance prohibiting the possession of the Tools of Violence and Vandalism during a Demonstration.


Joseph J. Haraburda
President & CEO

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Vandals Strike Again!

James Syhabout is an Oakland native who has continuously invested in his hometown. He brought the city its first Michelin-starred restaurant in Commis, and two years ago, he opened Hawker Fare in his mother’s former Thai restaurant in Uptown Oakland. Later this summer, he plans to open Box & Bells, a casual gastropub in Rockridge.

A trash can fire set by vandals has forced Hawker Fare to stay dark since Saturday morning, and the restaurant will be closed indefinitely.

According to Syhabout, cameras caught masked vandals setting fire to the trash cans next to the restaurant and then running away. The trash cans were located next to the electrical meters and the electrical meters were basically melted, meaning the restaurant will closed for some time. It is not a small repair job.

Syhabout says he has no idea if the fires were related to the ongoing protests that have, for some reason, damaged local businesses. (Last week, nearby Oakland businesses Flora and Dogwood were damaged in the protests following the Trayvon Martin/George Zimmerman verdict.)

“Who knows. Three people had their faces covered up and ran away,” Syhabout says, musing that the recent protests are the only thing that really comes to mind, but it’s impossible to know why the arsonists did what they did. “We don’t have any beef with anyone, so who knows what the motive is. But it certainly wasn’t an accident.”

Now, Syhabout has to go through the red tape procedure to get his popular Oakland restaurant back up and running. It’s a process that will require new city inspections, building permits, electrical permits and all kinds of approvals and the like. They have to replace the meters, and the work will have to be done on others’ timetables; in other words, they’re subject to the schedules of PG&E and the city of Oakland.

For a restaurant to miss a night of business — let alone many days of business — is a big deal. Restaurants already operate on slim profit margins, and an indefinite leave of absence is not good. Plus, Hawker Fare has 25 employees.

Syhabout is hopeful that the city of Oakland can expedite the process.

“Who knows when we’ll reopen,” says Syhabout. “The whole neighborhood has been super supportive, and hopefully the city will understand and cooperate.”

Originally Posted on by Paolo Lucchesi in Controversy , Inside Scoop SF

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Monday, July 29, 2013

Oakland Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce President Joe Haraburda to Retire in December 2013

Leader’s quarter-century of service marked by numerous accomplishments, a powerful downtown monument and regional economic leadership

Oakland, CA – Joseph Haraburda has announced that he will retire as President and CEO of the Oakland Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce in December of 2013. 
He has served in the role for 17 years. Previously, he volunteered for 8 years as a board member, head of the Economic Development department and served as Vice Chair while employed as a leader in local newspaper publishing. 

In looking ahead, Haraburda said, “I am immensely grateful for the dedication of the Chamber staff both past and present who worked with me to launch many new projects and initiatives each focusing on stimulating the Oakland economy.  We have accomplished some great things for Oakland’s economy and community. There is no doubt in my mind that the new executive will benefit greatly by their expertise.”

Haraburda provided quiet, steady and consistent leadership to the City of Oakland and helped shepherd many important local initiatives.  He has a long record of accomplishment and a legacy of projects big and small that benefitted the entire community.  Sample successes:

·         Remember ThemMonument – a monument in Oakland’s uptown dedicated to Humanitarians

·         Small BusinessDevelopment Center – Oakland Chamber now serves as home to this essential tool for local growth and small business support.

·         Facilitated the formation of the East Bay Women In Business Roundtable, Non-Profit Roundtable and Oakland Restaurant Association

·         Regional leadership on Economic Development – hosting regional “Mega-summits” and speaking loudly for regional collaboration at the local and state level

·         Founder of America’s Children’s HolidayParade, one of the largest children’s Parades now televised nationally and worldwide

·         Engaging local organizations and neighborhood business improvement districts as partners on issues important to Public Safety and the economic growth of Oakland

·         Confidant to the region’s elected officials, appointed commissioners and leaders of businesses of all sizes.

Joe and his wife Cathy plan to approach retirement with enthusiasm and will continue to look for ways to engage where they can make a difference in Oakland and the Bay Area.

Chamber Board Chair Shannon Pedder added, “Joe has positioned the Chamber as a regional leader on economic development and personally advised elected officials and business leaders across the community. In each his many wins for the community, Joe has provided consistent, steady and thoughtful leadership. We are so grateful for his efforts.” 

In the weeks and months ahead, the Chamber will take some time to reflect on Joe’s accomplishments and begin a regional and possibly national search for his replacement. Joe will remain as Chamber president through the end of the year. 

The Chamber plans to find many opportunities to honor Joe in the months ahead and will engage its members and the public in those efforts. 

# # #


About Joseph Haraburda:
Joe has held the position of President and CEO of the Oakland Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce, the largest and most diverse business organization in the East Bay since 1996. Prior to becoming president Joe served on the Chamber board and had a 35 year career in newspaper publishing serving as general manger of the Oakland Tribune, associate publisher and publisher for the Alameda Newspaper Group; senior vice president for The Washington Post Company; director for The Wilmington Journal & Morning News, and senior management positions at The Philadelphia Inquirer and Suburban newspapers in Pennsylvania and New Jersey.

About the Oakland Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce:
Oakland Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce is serving member companies and affiliate members with upwards of 200,000 employees throughout the East Bay. The focus of the Chamber staff is building a strong economy, representing business to government and enhancing the quality of life in the Oakland region.  More information can be found at

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Thursday, July 25, 2013

Inside Oakland Breakfast Forum with Oakland City Attorney Barbara Parker

Join us tomorrow at the Chamber,
Breakfast on us!

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Tuesday, July 23, 2013


 Port Settles Litigation To Achieve Long-Term Revenue Stability And Jobs

The Oakland Board of Port Commissioners unanimously approved a litigation settlement agreement with SSA Terminals, LLC and SSA Terminals (Oakland), LLC (collectively, “SSAT”), one of the Port’s major long-term seaport tenants. The settlement involves four of the Port’s seven marine terminals, and will create operationally the 3rd largest terminal on the U.S. West Coast. In terms of size and operational efficiencies, this new “mega-terminal” will be more in line with competing terminals, allowing the Port to sustain and attract more maritime cargo, which currently supports approximately 40% of the 73,000 jobs the Port generates annually in the region.

“We reached this litigation settlement to protect the Port’s long-term viability as a job-creating economic engine for this region,” stated Port Board President Cestra “Ces” Butner.

The four terminals involved in the agreement are located along the Inner and Middle Harbors: Howard Terminal (Berths 67-68); Global Gateway Central terminal (GGC; Berths 60-63); Oakland International Container Terminal (OICT; Berths 57-59); and Total Terminals International terminal (TTI; Berths 55-56). Under the settlement, SSAT will lease Berths 57-59 through 2022 at current rates and conditions; terminate its lease for Howard Terminal effective September 30, 2013; and dismiss its lawsuits against the Port. Additionally and independent of the settlement agreement, the TTI lease will be assigned to SSAT through 2016, with one option to extend to 2022.

The settlement involves short-term revenue loss in exchange for longer term revenue growth and stability. Prior to this agreement, the Port was facing the expiration of all four terminal leases along its middle and inner harbors in 2016-2017. Further, those leases all had very short renewal notification periods, leaving the Port vulnerable in the event one of the operators decided not to renew its lease. The settlement and the independent assignment of the TTI terminal lease to SSAT create a 350-acre mega-terminal, which is far more optimal than several smaller terminals in today’s competitive maritime market.

The Board carefully considered over many months how to move forward relative to a potential settlement with SSAT and a reconfiguration of the marine terminals over many months. The Port formed an Ad-hoc Committee of Commissioners Alan Yee, Ces Butner, and Bryan Parker to study and evaluate the alternatives available to the Port for settlement. These Commissioners and staff dedicated countless hours to this important endeavor. Given the realities of the Port’s current market position and growing competition in the maritime industry, this agreement provides the Port with important competitive benefits and future opportunities that will facilitate the efficient flow of cargo through these terminals.

Commission President Butner added: “This is a fair deal and creates a lease in line with current market realities. This agreement, along with other transformative projects like the City/Port Oakland Army Base redevelopment, is key to long-term economic growth in and around the Port because it will make us a more competitive gateway.”

About the Port of Oakland:

The Port of Oakland oversees the Oakland seaport and Oakland International Airport. The Port's jurisdiction includes 20 miles of waterfront from the Bay Bridge through Oakland International Airport. The Oakland seaport is the fifth busiest container port in the U.S.; Oakland International Airport is the second largest San Francisco Bay Area airport offering over 300 daily passenger and cargo flights; and the Port’s real estate includes commercial developments such as Jack London Square and hundreds of acres of public parks and conservation areas. Together, through Port operations and those of its tenants and users, the Port supports more than 73,000 jobs in the region and nearly 827,000 jobs across the United States. The Port of Oakland was established in 1927 and is an independent department of the City of Oakland.

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Monday, July 22, 2013

The Dine & Unwind Restaurant Series begins TOMORROW

Oakland Restaurant Association Announces
The Dine & Unwind Restaurant Series
Beer Maker Dinner on July 23 at Jack London Square’s Forge


Oakland, CA – Oakland Restaurant Association in partnership with The Oakland Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce and Visit Oakland is proud to announce the first ever series of monthly featured events hosted by some of Oakland’s top restaurants focusing on wine tastings, cutting edge cuisine, artisan breweries and other vibrant Oakland-based venues.  Oakland’s Dine & Unwind Restaurant Series celebrates the exciting and dynamic restaurants that Oakland has to offer, making it a thriving culinary destination. Each month, a different venue will host guests looking to experience some of Oakland’s best.  The inaugural event will take place at Forge tomorrow July 23.  15% of all proceeds from the event will benefit 51Oakland, a non-profit organization that promotes educational, artistic and musical opportunities for youth in the Oakland public school system.

"This monthly, moveable feast is a great opportunity for visitors and locals alike to enjoy Oakland's unique offerings," said Alison Best, president and CEO of Visit Oakland. "We wanted to provide an opportunity for the community to experience a selection of Oakland's restaurants and tasting rooms that are key contributors to the flourishing transformation of Oakland."

Forge at Jack London Square will host the inaugural beer maker dinner event tomorrow, July 23, which will feature three of Oakland’s most celebrated breweries: Linden Street Brewery, Drake’s and Ale Industries.  Forge is one of Oakland’s newest restaurants and is known for its wood-fired cooking, Neopolitan-style pizza and American classics in a prime waterfront location.  Forge will highlight some of their classic menu items alongside the three outstanding local brews. Ticket price is $50 per person.  Guests can make reservations through the website at or by calling 510.268.3200. 

Future events will take place at participating venues including Picán, Bocanova, Lungomare, A16 and many more.  For more information about Oakland’s Dine & Unwind Restaurant Series, please visit or contact Ivette Torres at 510-874-4800.


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Friday, July 19, 2013


If there is talk and no action, no enforcement, no consequences what is a business to do?

What are the rights of businesses in Oakland?

If demonstrations are invited to Oakland, as elected officials have openly stated, then who is responsible for the damage?

Who is to be held accountable for the destruction caused by anarchists? 

Business bears the cost of cleanup in the event of a welcomed demonstration turning violent?

If a business closes or loses customers and revenue because the City is deemed unsafe by residents and visitors, then who is responsible?

If someone is masked, then why are they not held, identified and questioned?

If someone brings a crowbar, hammer or object uncommon to a peaceful demonstration, then why are they not held, identified and questioned?

What rules are we as business people held to?  Are they the same for demonstrators’ gone rogue?

What does the compliance officer believe needs to be done? Do our police officers hesitate because of the Consent Decree? Are the rules clear?

Citizens have been threatened on Federal, State, County, BART and City property…  We believe this is a regional problem that requires a regional approach to a solution.

What is the answer???  We are ready to do our part and stand with the Community at large to work towards a permanent solution! A peaceful Oakland…

In the meantime, the Alameda County District Attorney is ready to prosecute.  Let’s arrest the vandals! If you would like to contact the District Attorney, please call (510) 272-6309.

If you see destruction happening, then email a photo of the incident to or call the District Attorney’s Office to provide photo or video evidence.

Joseph J. Haraburda
President & CEO
Oakland Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce

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Invitation to Bid for Network Security ForeScout Hardware


Bid Due Date:  Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Proposal Due Time:  2:00 p.m.

Bid Type:  Goods and Services

Bidders may obtain the Bidding Documents on line at the Port of Oakland website at on or after Wednesday, July 17, 2013.  Or navigate to the Port of Oakland’s website at:, then click on “Doing Business” and then on “Bids/RFPs/RFQs to download the Bid.





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Thursday, July 18, 2013

City of Oakland to Host The 2nd National Convening of the Urban Manufacturing Alliance


Oakland, Here We Come!

City of Oakland to Host the UMA's 2nd National Convening

Oakland will be the host of the Second National Convening of the Urban Manufacturing Alliance (UMA) this fall.

Each year, the UMA convenes member organizations from across the country for a two-day conference and collaboration session. This meeting enables manufacturers and economic development professionals from all over the U.S. to come together to share best practices, learn from each other’s efforts, innovate and amplify their voice in the national policy discussion. Exchanging ideas on how urban manufacturing can reduce chronic unemployment and regain its foothold in dense urban areas are key goals of the UMA. Through this annual collaboration, the participants seek to strengthen their local economies, create jobs and revitalize their cities.

“Oakland is home to a growing array of urban manufacturers, ranging from individual artisan workshops all the way up to state-of-the-art aircraft engine production,” Oakland Mayor Jean Quan said. “These businesses spark new ideas and create high-quality jobs. Our city’s renaissance makes it a perfect host for the UMA, and we welcome the innovation and excitement they will bring.”

Kate Sofis, executive director of SFMade and co-founder of the UMA says "SFMade is pleased to co-host, with the City of Oakland, the Second National Convening of the Urban Manufacturing Alliance, which will bring together organizations from around the country, all working on growing their own local manufacturing communities.”

This year’s convening is sponsored by Citi Community Development and The Kauffman Foundation and will take place on October 3-4. Oakland was selected out of a number of cities because according to Bethany Betzler, UMA Advisory Board Member and Project Manager at the Detroit Creative Corridor Center, “Oakland demonstrates the variety of assets and challenges existent across the varying U.S. cities that our members represent. Convening in Oakland means that we can marvel in the city’s urban manufacturing successes while simultaneously putting our heads together to develop solutions to challenges many cities share.”

For the full press release, click here.

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Wednesday, July 17, 2013

OPD talks to business owners on plans for future protests


About 50 business owners and concerned citizens attended a briefing at the Chamber today with Oakland Police Chief Sean Whent.  The Chief acknowledged OPD was not prepared for Saturday nights protest but told business owners steps have been taken to beef up patrols in the days ahead.

When police do attempt to arrest someone suspected of violence, destruction of property or some other offense, the Chief said others in the crowd interfere with the officers and attempt to free the suspect.  This means in crowd situations OPD needs more officers to make even just one arrest.
Alameda County District Attorney Nancy O’Malley who also attended told the group that in this type of situation it is legal to arrest someone who is wearing a mask and carrying a hammer or spray paint.  Many in the group applauded the idea of taking steps against someone with clear criminal intent before someone gets hurt or property is destroyed.

As those in attendance knew OPD is seriously understaffed.  And during a normal shift fewer officers than you might imagine patrol the entire city.  Chief Whent said strategies like extended shifts, double shifts and cancelled time off were being used to add officers over the next few days and when problems are anticipated.

OPD did call on mutual aid assistance Monday night and that brought extra officers from neighboring jurisdictions.  Mutual aid is only available when there is an emergency – not in preparation for one.  Chief Whent did indicate he is talking with other law enforcement agencies to support in ways they can short of mutual aid.

For people who are able to take video of any criminal activity they were encouraged to send it to the following e-mail address - for follow up by OPD.

Next Steps

What more can we do as a business community?

There is no doubt that over the long term and immediately political leadership is important.  Contact your council member and the Mayor and let them know that more needs to be done to address this crime problem.  The more includes finding ways to increase the number of uniformed police officers on the street, through more hiring, contracts with outside agencies and civilianizing as much work as possible to free uniformed officers for patrol. It will likely require support for a new parcel tax when Measure Y expires at the end of 2014.  
Click here to find out who your councilmember is and how to contact them:

We need to find ways to make the statement that violence and the destruction of property are NOT ACCEPTABLE here in Oakland. 

Contact Paul Junge at the Chamber (510) 874-4817 or with your ideas on what we can do together to keep our city safe.

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35 Reasons You Need to Move to Oakland by Randy Nelson (Movoto) Part 2

11. Baseball Games You Can Actually Afford

Source: Flickr user Kai Schreiber

While we’re on the topic of sports, how cool is it that you can go to an MLB game—conveniently accessible by BART train, no less—for less than $20? In fact, tickets to some games can be had for as little as $2.

12. Oaklandish

Source: Flickr user Mary

“Oaklandish” is defined as “how we do it in Oakland.” It’s also a local brand and, well, movement that celebrates Oakland culture and “local love,” selling shirts and other goods emblazoned with an iconic oak tree logo. Additionally, Oaklandish hosts events, promotes civic pride, and supports local causes through grants and donations.

13. The Oakland Zoo Is Pretty Amazing

Source: Flickr user Anna Fox

Packing a lot into a relatively small (100 acre) space, the Oakland Zoo is regarded by many residents and visitors to the city as one of the best they’ve ever visited. It’s great for a day out with the family, or just visiting by yourself when you want to take in the wonders of the animal world.

14. MC Hammer Is An Official Tourism Spokesman

Not only does Mr. 2 Legit 2 Quit himself hail from Oaktown, but the rapper is actually an official spokesperson for the city, having written songs and created videos extolling the virtues of his hometown. Now that’s legit.

15. A City of Diversity

Source: Flickr user Debra Roby

One of the many things Hammer loves so much about Oakland is how diverse it is. You’ll find people and communities of all ethnicities, backgrounds, and origins here, plus everything they bring with them, including unique art and dining, along with other aspects of diverse international cultures.

16. Great Restaurants That Don’t Cost a Fortune

Source: Flickr user Mary

The international heritage of Oakland’s residents can be seen especially well in its restaurant scene, which offers up cuisine from pretty much every corner of the globe en masse. No matter that type of grub you like, you’ll find several options for it here. Not only that, but there are countless fantastic dining experiences to be had without breaking the bank. The city is just chock full of them.

17. Local History at It’s All Good Bakery

Source: Flickr user Kelish

The amazing 7Up Pound Cake and peach cobbler are the It’s All Good bakery’s culinary claims to fame, but this family owned and operated business actually has ties to Oakland’s rich history of social change, seeing as it’s located in the original headquarters of the Black Panther Party. Come for the delicious treats, stay for the history.

18. The Mountain View Cemetery

Source: Flickr user Daniel Ramirez

Now, you might be thinking, “How on Earth can a cemetery be awesome?” When it’s Mountain View. This place is not only absolutely gorgeous, serene, and perfectly maintained, but it’s also quite the history lesson. A veritable who’s who of famous Californians, from former governors and railroad magnates to the infamous Black Dahlia, are buried here, and regular tours are offered.

19. Urban Farming is a Fresh Idea

Source: Flickr user Irene Florez

Was that a… farm you just walked past? Yep. Oakland is a hotspot for urban farming, with entire communities coming together to plant and raise crops. It’s not just great for community building, but it helps kids (and adults) learn the importance of nature, healthy food, and working together.

20. The White Elephant Sale

Source: Flickr user Oakland Museum of California

Every year, the Oakland Museum Women’s Board hosts its White Elephant Sale, essentially a massive (I mean massive) rummage sale inside a huge warehouse. It’s basically the biggest garage sale you’ve ever seen, only with even more unique/weird stuff. Get there early and be prepared to spend money.

21. Print Is Not Dead

Source: Flickr user frankrolf

Put one foot in the door of Issues on Piedmont and you’ll be reminded that the printed page is far from extinct. This fantastic book/magazine store has hundreds of domestic and international periodicals, zines, and… yeah… tons and tons of magazines. The Oakland area has lots of independent bookstores, but this is among the very best.

22. The Mystery Gnomes

Source: Flickr user Eric

Look down there, on the truck of that tree. Is that a… door? About a year ago, the residents of Oakland started noticing hundreds of tiny painted wooden doors, gnomes, and mushrooms popping up all over the city. Where did they come from? Who put them there? No one really cares, because they’re whimsical and awesome. Even PG&E thinks so, deciding not to remove them from countless utility poles where they’ve taken up residence.

23. Even the Trash Cans Are Pretty

Source: Flickr user Connie Ma

If there’s a space in Oakland without a gnome nailed to it, there’s probably a mosaic on it. This includes many of the city’s trash cans. Local artists have gotten the go ahead to adorn the city with all sorts of murals, mosaics, and other urban art in a successful attempt to make it even nicer looking.

24. Montclair’s Storybook Houses

Source: Flickr user Chris Cochems

Going back to gnomes, and in the vein of Fairyland from earlier, Oakland’s Montclair district has some of the most utterly charming homes you’ve even seen. They look like something straight out of a storybook. You can have a great afternoon just strolling and looking at these architectural wonders.

25. Picardy Drive’s Winter Wonderland

A different sort of fantasy land, Picardy Drive has plenty of amazing houses to oggle at, but it’s probably best known around the country for its yearly display of Christmas Lights. If you’re here during the holiday season, you really shouldn’t miss it.

26. The Crucible Art Collective


If you’d rather make art than look at it, check out The Crucible. This artists’ collective has classes on metalworking, glassblowing, and tons of other ways to unleash your pent up creativity.

27. NIMBY Space

NIMBY stands for “Not In My Backyard” and is a place where DIY artists, makers, hackers, and other creative folks can rent space to do what they do best—without driving their neighbors crazy, hence the name. It’s also a venue for all sorts of crazy events, and in the past has hosted the Death Guild’s recreation of Thunderdome of “Mad Max” fame. Yours truly will never forget that night.

28. The Chabot Space and Science Center

Looking for a different type of space? You’ll find it at the Chabot Space and Science Center, an observatory and planetarium in the Oakland Hills. There, you can learn about space, look into space, or just take in an awe-inspiring view of Oakland, Berkeley, San Francisco, and beyond, day or night.

29. The Grand Lake Theater and its Mighty Wurlitzer

Source: Flickr user Hitchster

If stars of a different sort are your thing, the majestic Grand Lake Theater is can’t-miss. Not only is its restored Art Deco interior jaw-dropping, but this place has a beautiful sounding Wurlitzer organ that rises out of the orchestra pit before some showings, on which live music is played. It’s truly a unique moviegoing experience.

30. The New Parkway Theater

An even more unique (and unusual) movie watching experience can be had at the recently reopened Parkway Theater, where traditional theater seats make way for couches and armchairs, and adult beverages are on the menu. It mainly shows documentaries, in addition to art house movies, indie flicks, and cult classics.

31. The Paramount and Fox Theaters

Source: Flickr user Alejandro De La Cruz

In addition to many smaller clubs, Oakland has two world-renowned live venues, the Fox Theater and the Paramount Theater. Featuring stunning restored architecture, they both play host to big-name music acts, while the Paramount is also used for ballet, theater, and comedy shows. There’s just something about seeing an awesome band or other live event (I saw Devo at the Paramount) in such an amazing setting that makes it even more memorable.

32. Souley Vegan

Source: Flickr user George Kelly

Oakland has plenty of options for vegetarian and vegan cuisine, but one of its most unique by far is Solely Vegan—a vegan Soul Food restaurant. Enjoy your crispy tofu “catfish” while watching a continuous loop of old Soul Train episodes playing in the background at this Jack London Square fixture.

33. Better Deep Dish Than Chicago

Source: Flickr user LWY

I’ve heard transplanted Chicago natives freely proclaim that the deep dish pies at Zachary’s Chicago Pizza on College Avenue are the best they’ve ever had. I unfortunately don’t have the ability to make that comparison for myself, but their pizza is amazing—and plenty of other folks think so too, meaning this place is pretty much always busy. But so, so worth it.

34. Bakesale Betty Chicken Sandwiches OMG

Source: Flickr user _e.t

Add this to the list of food in Oakland worth waiting for. Bakesale Betty is renowned for their fried chicken sandwiches, which people happily wait in block-long lines for. They’re a fantastically crispy, spicy treat that you get to eat while sitting at an old ironing board turned table. It sounds gimmicky, sure, but the food doesn’t lie.

35. Beer Revolution

Source: Flickr user Luiz Eduardo

Anyone who’s over 21 and looking to wash all this awesome food down should absolutely not miss Beer Revolution. This Jack London Square favorite doesn’t just have beer—it has all the beer and then some. I’m talking 48 beers on tap at all times (regularly rotates) and hundreds of others in bottles. The only problem is deciding what to try. I’m going to end this list here, but I could easily keep going for dozens more—and then some. What I’m hoping is that you’ll help us expand this small snippet of what makes Oakland so awesome by adding your own recommendations, favorites, and hidden gems in the comments section. And if you’re looking to make the move to Oakland, Movoto Real Estate can help. Can’t wait to see what you’ve got!

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Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Port of Oakland Request for Proposal


Request for Proposal 

The Port of Oakland is calling for proposals for the Information Technology Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) Hosting (RFP No. 13-14/01), to be delivered to the Information Technology Department, (attention Ben Wu), at 530 Water Street Oakland, CA 94607, until 11:00 a.m. on August 5, 2013.

The RFP process is designed to select a company qualified to provide Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) virtual servers to house a version of the Port’s Geographic Information System (GIS).
Copies of the RFP may be obtained at Port of Oakland – Purchasing Department, 530 Water Street, Oakland, CA 94607, (510) 627-1104, Office Hours: 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., or by visiting the Port of Oakland’s main website at , then click “Doing Business” and then on “Bids/RFPs/RFQs” and follow the instructions to download the proposal packet.



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Friday, July 12, 2013

35 Reasons You Need to Move to Oakland by Randy Nelson (Movoto)

1. Rent is Cheaper Here (and You Can Actually Find a Place)

Source: Flickr user CharlestonTheDigital

Renting anywhere in the Bay Area is still an expensive proposition compared to other parts of the country, but at least rent prices in Oakland won’t have you considering selling your organs on the black market (or moving in with six other people).

2. Warm, Predictable Weather

Source: Flickr user Jesse Richmond

While our neighbors across the bay have to carry hoodies and coats just in case the weather takes a sudden turn for the frigid, Oaklanders can plan outings and events with confidence, knowing that a sudden fog bank isn’t going to appear and drop the temperature by 10 or more degrees. Plus, it’s already a few degrees warmer on this side of the bay to begin with.

3. (Relatively) Stress-Free Driving

Driving in any city comes with its share of challenges, mostly in the form of crazy drivers, but in Oakland we at least don’t have to deal with the sort of rush hour traffic jams and bottlenecks that our counterparts in other big burgs do. In fact, driving through downtown is downright peaceful no matter the day or time.

4. You Can Find a Parking Space

Speaking of driving, you actually have a chance of there being parking once you reach your destination. What’s more, the meters are free on Sundays.

5. That Beautiful New Bay Bridge Span

Source: Flickr user Steve Jurvetson

We can technically lay claim to the fantastic new span of the SF-Oakland Bay Bridge, expected to open later in 2013, as it lays on our side of the bay from Treasure Island. That’s right, SF, it’s ours!

6. Lake Merritt

Technically a lagoon, this 155 acre body of water is one of the crown jewels of Oakland, providing not just recreation options but a beautiful slice of nature in the middle of an urban landscape. Lake Merritt‘s shoreline recently underwent an extensive revitalization, so it’s an absolutely breathtaking spot for going for a walk, sitting outside with friends, dining, or renting a watercraft.

7. The Oak Ness Monster

How many cities can claim they have an actual lake monster for a resident? Yes, there are those that believe Lake Merritt is home to a sort of sea monster, affectionately referred to as Oakie, the Oak Ness Monster, and Merrittzilla. Sightings of the beast are rare, but it’s yet another reason to come down to the shoreline, which can’t be a bad thing.

8. Children’s Fairyland

Source: Flickr user Connie Ma

Just a quick skip from Lake Merritt is the delightful family attraction Children’s Fairyland. This charming little theme park is designed specifically for kids, so all adults have to be accompanied by one (although special grown-up nights are a thing). Fairyland has played a part in the childhood of many East Bay youth, and it’s just as magical for a new generation.

9. Fentons Creamery

Source: Flickr user Show and Tell

If you’ve seen the Pixar movie “Up”, you’ve seen Fentons. It’s the place at the end where Carl and Russell get ice cream together. Yep, it’s a real place, and it’s just as special as you’d expect from a restaurant Pixar’s wizards chose to include in one of their movies. While its building has been revamped, this icon of Oakland really reflects the city’s rich history, having been around more than 100 years.

10. The Enthusiasm of Our Pro Sports Fans

Even if you don’t like sports, you have to hand it to Oakland’s sports fans. Whether they’re rooting on the A’s, Raiders, or Warriors, these enthusiastic souls bring the Oakland sense of community to every home event—and beyond. Oh yeah, we have three pro sports teams, which is pretty darn impressive in and of itself.

Stay Tuned for Part 2 on Monday!

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