Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Films, Footprints, Friends & Fruit

We're using all the "F" words fit to print...and should add one more - "Fatigued."

If your neighbors on Quesada Avenue in Bayview look a bit tired this week, they may be tuckered out from a long weekend of community service. It was a weekend that began on Wednesday.

CBS 5 news cameras came to the block Wednesday to tape the Quesada Kids harvesting local fruit trees, a summer project of the Quesada Gardens Initiative under Shane King's leadership. USF volunteer Greg Rivers has joined the team to develop the project into a sustainable outlet for all sorts of community entrepreneurship. Bayview residents Carlos and Julie Galan and Winifred Montgomery opened their hearts and yards so that we could harvest two types of plums and yellow apples for the cause.

On Thursday, Bayview Footprints' Just for Us...and YOU TOO! series of social events came to the Quesada Garden to help launch the 2nd annual Quesada Gardens Outdoor Film Festival. A tremendously diverse crowd of about 60 people gathered. Steven Aiello received the first-ever "Karl Paige and Annette Smith Award for Community-Building."

Jim Ansbro, from the Latona Avenue "northland," came early with a basket of basketballs...small ones as treats for the kids that also proved popular with Ms. Devere from Quesada who works with seniors who can use them for exercise.

Fred Guni wowed us all by singing and playing the guitar, delivering several songs including a heartfelt one dedicated to Karl Paige's memory. (A special "thank you" to Jamie, Quesada's newest neighbor, who turned out with his family for the event and donated use of his microphone and amp for Fred's performance.)

Nibblers tried yellow watermelon (from the Farmers' Market), while others enjoyed nectarines donated by Michael Janis and the SF Wholesale Food Market and sausages donated by Bayview's own Evergood Sausage Company. Tom Galante organized the food offerings for the event. Linda Brooks-Burton brought lemonade she made from locally harvested lemons.

The Green Goatee held court, once again, handing out alms of gardening advice to whoever had a need. CBS 5 returned to cover the event set-up in time for broadcast on their evening news.

As dusk approached, jazz diva Sarah Vaughan and silent film star Harold Lloyd came to life on the BIG screen (lent for the occassion by Kristine Enea). The younger crowd held on to the event until nearly midnight, using the projection system for a video gaming competition. Many thanks to Quesadians Sharon, Jon and Chester who supplied electricity from their home.

On Saturday, the Quesada Kids were back at it. They set up shop on the corner of Third and Palou to sell plums from Winifred Montgomery's yard and apples from Carlos and Julie Galan's house.

That evening, the Film Fest kicked into high gear with a showing of Girl's Rock!, a feature-length documentary by QGI co-founder and resident Shane King. Shane took questions from the audience after the film, and then local youth swept in to hook up a Play Station. Another 60 people attended over the course of the evening, and the spirit of community was present. Doris Vincent brought homemade caramel popcorn and Rhonda Winter brought her special chocolate chip cookies...both to the delight of kids young and old.

It's worth noting that all events were free and, aside from the donations of food, neither Footprints nor Quesada Gardens had a drop of funding for any of the community-building work. It's just another example of Bayview residents stepping up to create the neighborhood we know is possible. The benefit of this work is already clear. The costs are minimal. The expense of NOT building community is always higher than we want to pay.

1 comment:

Winifred Montgomery said...

I'm proud to see that my plums went to a good purpose and contributed to the community.