Boba Guys storefront
Boba Guys on 19th Street.

 Boba Guys looks to expand next door on 19th

Since the demise of Valencia Eyewear, a small retail store on 19th Street just off Valencia, the windows have been painted and what goes on inside is unclear. Now a sign has been posted making the intentions clear: Boba Guys is seeking a change of use to expand into the former eyewear space. –LW

A Balompie return is on the horizon!

Neighborhood pupusa joint and all-around favorite Balompie closed temporarily last year to perform a seismic retrofit. Since then, there’s been lots of construction work but little news, until recently: A note has appeared on the door announcing that the restaurant will reopen Nov. 24. –LW

Foreign Cinema wanted a wine bar; city said, “not so fast”

It’s back to the drawing board for Foreign Cinema.

The Mission Street restaurant’s owners wanted to tack a wine bar to its existing restaurant, but has, for now, been reined in by the city and neighborhood activists.

On Wednesday, Gayle Pirie and John Clark, the owners of the restaurant, virtually threw up their hands in submission and canceled their hearing with the Planning Commission after the city’s planning staff ruled that a Foreign Cinema wine bar wouldn’t be quite so “neighborhood-serving.”

Add to that vocal opposition from United to Save the Mission, an activist group that in so many words called the project, and Foreign Cinema’s existence, a form of gentrification.   

It would just be torture, Clark figured, because the Planning Commission would likely go with the staff’s recommendations and vote it down. “Why go and be abused?” he said.

But the owners, who have steered their restaurant through 18 years and two recessions, are not totally giving up. They’re now in “discussions” with the Mission Economic Development Agency, whose policy team said in a statement that it was working with the restaurant’s owners to find “a win-win for them and the community.” 

To be continued. –JM

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Department of Aging and Adult Services wants your input

The department is seeking the community’s input to help plan future services for older adults and adults with disabilities. What’s working? What isn’t? What kinds of supportive services are needed? From the Department:

Participating will help shape how local dollars are spent, including the voter-approved San Francisco Dignity Fund. The survey is available online at: Printed copies are also available at several community centers and by mail. For more information, or to request a copy, contact: (415) 355-6782 or The survey closes Dec. 8, 2017. Participants could win a Visa gift card! The survey is also available in: Español • 中⽂ • русский • Filipino • Tiếng Việt

Howard Zinn Book Fair this weekend

On Sunday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., the Howard Zinn Book Fair returns to City College of San Francisco’s Mission Campus for its fourth year. Per the organizers:

Over 140 Authors, Zinesters, Bloggers and publishers will gather for a jam-packed for a day of close to 60 readings, panel discussions and workshops exploring the value of dissident histories. In the spirit of the late historian Howard Zinn we recognize the stories of the ways that everyday people have risen to propose a world beyond empires big and small. There will also be a big room full of over 75 radical book sellers, publishers and community organizations.

More information including speakers and schedules available here.

New Precita Eyes mural addresses gang violence

Artists with Precita Eyes Mural Arts Center have completed “Once Upon a Time in the Mission,” a mural at 24th and Shotwell streets. The piece is “a response to the pain of gang violence that has saddened this corner of the Mission,” Precita writes. The work is a collaboration between artists who grew up on Shotwell Street and participants in Precita’s Urban Youth Arts program and funded by a grant from the California Arts Council. –LW

“Once upon a time in the Mission” mural at 24th and Shotwell Streets by Precita Eyes Muralists.

RareField wants to throw a party and you’re invited

You probably know what RareField is even if you don’t know what the company does. It’s a design-build company founded by the folks behind Paxton Gate. You can read all about their launch, and nominal separation from Paxton Gate, here.

But the distinction isn’t stopping them from celebrating Paxton Gate’s 25th anniversary — the party happens Friday, December 1 at 7 p.m. at Paxton Gate. -LW


 Families of crash victims hold vigil and neighborhood walk 

On Sunday, families who have been affected by traffic collisions will mark the World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims. Starting at 3 p.m, they’ll walk a 1.5-mile route from 16th Street BART plaza to City Hall and then hold a vigil to remember those lost to crashes. You can see coverage from last year’s walk here.

El Rio confirmed as legacy business

“Your Dive,” El Rio, is an LGBTQ-friendly bar and events hub as well as a profit sharing business. They’ve been running Salsa Sunday with live music and Mango, a monthly dance party for queer women of color, for decades.  

With a unanimous vote from the Small Business Commission, El Rio (3158 Mission St.) became one of 113 small businesses operating for longer than 30 years that are recognized by the city as a Legacy Business. –LW

Benefit for the finishing touches at the Louise Lawrence Transgender Archive

On Thursday, Nov. 30, the GLBT History Museum (4127 18th St.) will host a benefit and fundraising campaign for the Louise Lawrence Transgender Archive in Vallejo. The archive is completing construction on its space. Shawna Virago, Birdie Bob Watt and J. Raoul Brody will perform, and archive founder Ms. Bobbie Davis will share some archive highlights. Tickets and more information here. –LW

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Julian grew up in the East Bay and moved to San Francisco in 2014. Before joining Mission Local, he wrote for the East Bay Express, the SF Bay Guardian, and the San Francisco Business Times.

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  1. How is it that Planning continues to be in the pockets of these obstructionists who just keep saying no and have no realistic vision of the Mission.

  2. Foreign Cinema has been in the Mission 18 YEARS!! Give them the wine bar – what are the Mission Econ Dev goons suggesting? Big booty jeans store or a luggage emporium? Sad!