Once Upon A Time, Happily Ever After… #1

Through a mixture of field recording, interviews, music and narration, the Once Upon A Time, Happily Ever After… audio tour explores the natural, social, and economic forces that have shaped, and continue to shape, Lake Merritt and its surroundings. It’s part of a larger, 3-part public art project by Scott Oliver. Visit the official Once Upon A […]

Jefferson Square playground

Oakland was shaped by seven green squaresDowntown’s living rooms, now, only five‘Parks bring out the goodness of good people’

Housewives Market

Housewives Market was OaklandAn ethnic food lifelineEast Bay’s thriving shopping destination

Lafayette Square

Lafayette Square is one of Oakland’s seven original squares, laid out on an 1853 map. Today, only five of the seven still exist. Oakland was shaped by seven green squaresDowntown’s living rooms, now, only five‘Parks bring out the goodness of good people’ Beginning in 1883, the square was home to the first Chabot Observatory. The […]

Pardee Home

The Pardee Home was built in 1868-1869 for Dr. Enoch Pardee and his family. Pardee would later serve as mayor of Oakland. His son, Dr. George Pardee later lived here with his family, and served as mayor of Oakland, and as governor of California. Notable during Pardee’s time as governor was the 1906 earthquake, which […]

10,000 Steps Tour #1

The 10,000 Steps project explored Oakland’s city squares, past and present. It culminated in a permanent meandering neighborhood narrative, ‘Walking the Invisible City’. This looped walk, marked with permanent conversational sidewalk stepping stones, reveals the city within the city: hidden local lore, architectural and cultural history, and points of urban transformation all centered around these historic […]

La Borinqueña Mexicatessen

La Borinqueña Mexicatessen was a small, family-run Mexican delicatessen, spanning 71 years and three generations. Forced to relocate twice because of freeways, it was a mainstay in the neighborhood until 2015. Famous for their tamales, people would return to buy them even after they had moved from the area. Oakland’s first Latino BarrioTina Tamale: Guardian […]


Interview: Retired Parks and Rec Employee and Fairyland Set Builder, Bob SchultzMusic: “The Happy Dragon’s Tongue,” “Jolly Boy Horse,” “Willy the Whale,” “Fairyland Music (Space Pop),” “The Merry Miller’s Cat,” and “Fairyland Music (Cowpoke),” recorded and compiled by Melinda Simon & Mark Fay; “Zip-a-dee-doo-dah,” written by Allie Wrubel & Ray Gilbert, performed by Sun Ra […]

Swan’s Market

Swan’s Market is newer than many of the other buildings in Old Oakland, but has been no less important to the fabric of the neighborhood. The building was constructed in phases from 1917 to 1940, and encompasses most of the entire block. Originally a “supermarket” of shops in an age of separate stores, it now […]