Love our Neighborhood Day returns this Saturday May 30th after a successful 2014 event that saw as many as 3,000 people attend the inaugural Open Streets event in North Oakland/Emeryville. A one-mile stretch of California State Highway 123 San Pablo Avenue will be closed to vehicle traffic allowing the public to experience our neighborhoods from a car-free perspective, facilitate activities and give neighborhood businesses vital exposure.
Despite this year’s route not technically running through Emeryville, The E’ville Eye is proud to announce that we will be a sponsor of this event. Taking the generous donations from readers and sponsorships from local businesses and pouring this back into the community. The Emeryville Community Services Department will be participating by having a booth along the event route.
Love Our Neighborhood Day (or “LOND” for short) is one of three yearly “Oaklavia” events coordinated by the Walk Oakland/Bike Oakland non-profit organization. WOBO’s overall mission is to improve neighborhood vitality by making walking & biking safer and more accessible. The main focus of the free community-driven open streets events is to bring residents and visitors out for exercise, movement and cultural enrichment on car-free, carefree city streets.
More than 60 activities are being hosted by neighborhood groups, nonprofits, community organizations and area businesses including music, dance, arts & crafts. A new addition to this years events will be a free walking tour highlighting various points of interest along North Oakland. Oakland Urban Paths Local historian Gene Anderson will lead the free walking tour which history files reveal has been a thoroughfare in use since the Native American/Pre-European contact era. The tour begins at noon at the corner of 59th and San Pablo.
The City of Berkeley and some of their neighborhood associations have stepped in to add their support behind the event. The revised route will include the three-block section of South West Berkeley that butts up to Ashby. Last year’s circular route required heavy traffic controls, created challenges within some of the interior neighborhoods, and spread the attendees around the larger route. This years route has been adjusted to just include San Pablo Avenue with the focus on growing attendance and with the hope of reincorporating Emeryville in the future. “It is important to note that the San Pablo corridor connects and serves Oakland, Emeryville, Berkeley and other cities to the north, and its central location will continue to draw residents from all over the East Bay to the event … including from Emeryville.” noted WOBO President Chris Hwang. The event’s date has been moved up to late spring to avoid conflict with the family vacation-heavy summer months.
Love our Neighborhood is still looking for community volunteers if you can donate your time:
Love Our Neighborhood Day Volunteer Sign Up →
Date: Saturday May 30th